We are a charity based in Ellesmere Port, Cheshire
Focused on helping make the world around us a better, happier place for everyone. We provide a safe, therapeutic and caring environment for those with lifelong learning disabilities and those struggling with their mental health & Isolation.
AND WHAT A YEAR IT’S BEEN!
HOW WE NEED YOUR HELP NOW….
To enable us to continue our important work and be in a strong position to respond effectively to the increasing demand for our services, to extend our reach to all that need us due to ill health and wellbeing issues brought on by the coronavirus long-term restrictions we need your help.
As we now move out of our current lockdown, our essential work with vulnerable young adults, children & families, young adults with lifelong learning disabilities & our over 50’s is a life saver to so many, and we need help in funding our specialist programs to ensure that we can continue to be here for those that need us the most.
Programs that we run and wish to do bigger & better in 2021 and beyond are:
- Wellies to Bellies - Our very popular Wellies to bellies program teaches young children where their food comes from, how to grow food from seed, tend the growing plant, right the way through to harvesting. We then get the youngsters in the kitchen alongside their parents and teach how to prepare a healthy nutritious meal from the produce that they and we have grown. This is all done with heaps of fun and lots of giggles. If our children don’t leave with dirty faces, full bellies, exhausted and wearing huge smiles after spending a day with us, then we haven’t done our job properly.
- Buddy Clubs -The Bridge Buddy Club is a befriending service aimed to help vulnerable adults to feel less lonely and isolated in these difficult times. The club is made up of a dedicated team of volunteers who make regular phone calls to those in need for a friendly chat, and to offer support in the form of a listening ear.
- Craft & creations clubs - People of all abilities are welcome to come along to take part in our crafting events, where they can enjoy meeting new people and learning new skills. We run these clubs so that people who want a bit of company can come along and enjoy socialising, especially during these times where so many people who live alone have been isolated. Many of our clients have learning difficulties and/or mental health problems. They come along accompanied by their carers and it’s especially rewarding to see how much they enjoy our events and to see how happy they are when they leave with their crafts eager to show their family and friends. Our Craft Club events helps build people’s confidence, which is a true blessing to see.
When our clients arrive, we start off with refreshments and get everyone settled before starting on our first craft of the day, when everyone has finished, we stop for a lunch break. We enjoy some freshly made soup and sandwiches followed by cake which has been especially baked by our chef. This is a time where everyone is nice and relaxed and chatting away.
- Learning Disabilities and S.E.N- We work really hard to engage anyone with a learning disability or children with Special educational needs/additional needs. We are very proud that our Families feel welcomed and safe in a non-judgmental environment. They return time and time again.
We encourage L.D work placements. We work in 6–8-week intervals and teach independence and life skills and what it’s like to work within a team. We employ young adults with learning disabilities and are proud that we pay a living wage.
- Green Therapy Days - Depression and anxiety can be completely debilitating conditions. We have had great success in helping people with depression and anxiety by getting them out in the fresh air and doing a meaningful activity. This could be weeding, seeding, digging, pruning etc, working alongside a team member. It gives a sense of purpose and a sense of achievement. Problems and issues can be discussed and worked through in a friendly non-judgemental setting.Clients can be referred from their G.P practice or through social prescribing, or they can self-refer.
- Over 50’s- There is a huge number of over 50’s that are suffering in silence, from isolation and loneliness. We are actively trying to reduce this figure within our community by running specific activities for the over 50’s. We have participated in African drumming sessions, cooking lessons, woodcraft, knit & natter, crochet, card making, gardening, arm-chair yoga, mindfulness, meditation and relaxation.
We make sure that each person receives a nutritious hot meal when they attend. There is always plenty of tea and chat, but most of all friendships have been made and there is always lots of laughter!
- Community Rangers - The local community rangers deliver their mini-rangers scheme at our site during the weekend. They have 2 groups, 4–11-year-olds and then 12 and above. All of the children learn survival skills, bush craft, gardening and horticulture, wood work and wildlife care .
- School Enrichment Days - We positively engage with local schools to bring the children along to our farm and wellness gardens. We can teach garden planning so that they can grow in their school environment. We duplicate some of our wellies to bellies work with them. We endeavour to incorporate the school curriculum within our sessions. We are lead by the teachers as to what they would like delivery to be .
All the funding raised in this campaign is for:
* All weather activity cabin for use by all our projects (including plumbing, lighting, heating & drainage) - £16,000
*All weather overflow cafe cabin for use with all our projects and customers (including plumbing, lighting, heating & drainage) - £16,000
*Toilet cubicles x 2 (Including foundation pads, plumbing, drainage & lighting) - £6,500
*Yurt for quiet reflection, de-stressing & confidential discussion - £25,000
*Forest school area fencing, ensuring the children's area is safe - £5,000
*Fencing off lavendar field to support & encourage bees - £2,000
*Upgrading current office computers & purchase computer pads to support family activities - £9,500
OTHER WAYS YOU CAN HELP
- Join our mailing list
- Follow us on FACEBOOK & INSTAGRAM
- Share our story with others
- Sponsor a work placement for a young adult with lifelong disabilities
Thank you for helping us to "Grow Better Lives"
Everything that we do is to improve and enhance the lives of those in and around Cheshire that are in need of help by creating:
- Outdoor study facilities & work experience for children and young adults
- Horticulture therapy and creative outdoor activities for those with mental health & life-long learning difficulties
- Sustainable jobs for those that have found themselves long term unemployed
- Support groups for those feeling alone & lonely within an environment where they feel welcome and safe
- Create a healthy, therapeutic environment, ideal for those with physical and learning disabilities, post- traumatic stress and mental health conditions
- Offer informal study facilities for children, families and student groups teaching the importance of growing sustainable produce and how maintaining a healthy lifestyle helps improve wellbeing
- Create permanent sustainable jobs for people who are long-term unemployed
- Grow fruit, vegetables, salads and herbs that will be sold within our weekly veg boxes, market stalls and farm shops
- Employ seasonal staff on six month work experience placements, where we help them to gain transferrable skills, training, certification of competence and written references that will aid them in their journey into permanent work
- Have fun!
- Obey the law
- Care for each other
- Engage with, and serve, the local community to the best of our ability
- Treat each other with respect
- Maintain safe, happy and inclusive places to work & visit
- Achieve excellence in our core activities at all times
- Give our clients and our customers great service and value for money always
Thank you again for helping us to "Grow Better Lives"