#PBPReachingOut is our campaign to fund the new Prout Bridge Project Community Outreach Programme. We want to buy, kit out and staff an outreach vehicle - so that we can flexibly provide support & activities within Beaminster and the surrounding villages.
We need your help to raise £20,000. This is an all or nothing campaign - if we don't reach the target, we don't get a penny & your donation will automatically be returned to you.
The Prout Bridge Project is a small charity that makes a big difference by delivering services for people of all ages in rural West Dorset, operating from the small town of Beaminster. In a typical year we work with over 500 young people & adults. You may formerly have known us as Beaminster Youth Club. The Prout Bridge Project provides:
- youth work and activity clubs for children and young people from the ages of 8 - 18
- mental health and wellbeing support for people of all ages including a counselling service that is free to use (age 16+)
- community outreach and affordable activities for people of all ages 0-100+!
We also work closely with other services including the Food Bank and the Police, and host sessions for specialist organisations like the Space Youth Project (a safe space for Dorset's LGBQT+ young people) and Shores (support for victims of sexual abuse).
Why do we need to fundraise?
Due to Covid, we haven't been able to use our building since March 2020 and we won't be able to until September 2021 at the earliest, resulting in much reduced income & access to funding. Throughout the pandemic, the charity has been busy remotely helping people accessing the free counselling service & youth worker support, but we haven't been able to run our programme of youth clubs & community activities for people of all ages.
#PBPReachingOut is our campaign to fund the start-up and first-year running costs of operating outreach services without our building. We've been wanting to develop the capability to run outreach projects for years and we feel now is the perfect time to make these plans a reality. Even when we get the building back, we will continue using the outreach vehicle to offer services out and about in Beaminster (e.g. Memorial Playing Fields, skate park and the Square) and surrounding villages (e.g. Broadwindsor, Mosterton, Drimpton, Marshwood, Salway Ash).
What difference will raising this money make?
Achieving our #PBPReachingOut campaign target will allow us to buy and kit out a multi-purpose outreach vehicle which will enable us to:
- Offer fun, play and social reconnection for our young people, with youth clubs and summer activity days running through the summer and beyond, including dance (tap, hip hop, ballet, toddler), sports (cricket, football, badminton, kung fu), arts (our youth band and drama) crafts and games
- Be there for young people to turn to for support and information, including support with issues like bullying, anxiety and low confidence
- Fight loneliness and isolation by running community coffee mornings, providing basic catering services
- Help people get back to health with sports and fitness activities for people of all ages
- Extend the reach of Beaminster Food Bank, which is run by St Mary's Church, Beaminster, by delivering essential supplies to households in need who can’t get to Beaminster for collection.
- Offer advice services to help people build back after Covid, including a regular job club and Citizen’s Advice drop-ins
How can you help?
We know it's been an extremely difficult time for lots of households and businesses throughout the last year. You can help our project in so many ways – if you are able to share our work within your network and to your friends, we would be extremely grateful. If you run a business and can donate something we can sell as a reward, that would be amazing. If you can make a pledge of money, thank you so much... Every single donation helps!
How will we spend the money?
The total programme costs we must raise for 2021 are £30k to purchase, kit out, run and staff the vehicle but we have already raised £10k.
With your help, we need to raise the other £20k through this crowdfunder campaign.
Dorset Council Youth Fund have already granted £6,100 for staffing costs and Comic Relief have given £4,000 toward vehicle operating costs for the first year.
Rather than just #PBPReachingOut this summer, we intend to make the Community Outreach Programme permanent once Covid-19 restrictions are fully relaxed.
In future years, operating costs will be covered out of normal Prout Bridge Project income activities and fundraising. Any money made by the Prout Bridge Project is reinvested in offering activities and services.
Findings from a March 2021 questionnaire survey of over 200 local residents shows there is strong support and demand for our Community Outreach Programme:
• 9 in 10 local residents support the plan for a Prout Bridge Project mobile outreach provision
• 4 in 10 say they or someone in their household would want to use the activities and services offered at least once a week and a further 3 in 10 said they would use it every few weeks.
Messages of Support
See full versions of our letters of support here
"since the sadness and changes brought on by COVID we have to look at other ways to support people and I hope that by raising the money we need to buy an outreach vehicle, we can get out and about, especially whilst people are unable to come to us. [...] Thank you – all the young people I have met over 35 years for making my years as a youth worker fun, happy, sometimes sad but most of all worthwhile. Long may the Prout Bridge Project continue. Paula"
"Since 2016, The Prout Bridge Project has been independently run by a Board of Trustees and Paula Tuff. They have evolved to offer a comprehensive youth work programme, incorporating open access youth work nights, band practice, mental health and wellbeing sessions and outreach work. [...] The rural geography of Dorset lends itself nicely to mobile provision and is a way for those communities to access high quality, well-resourced youth work in a way that is right for them. [...] This opportunity for offering more disadvantaged young people access to early intervention support is fully endorsed by Dorset Youth Association"
"The Prout Bridge Project is an absolutely vital service for Beaminster [...] having a hub where the community can gather and have access to a large variety of services, activities and clubs (including the arts which we are particularly interested in ) is integral to contributing to a healthy community, both mentally and physically"
"To me, mental health support is something that should be accessible to all people, of all ages and the services we run help achieve this, although of course we would like our reach to be wider [...] we hope by launching our Crowdfunder and the project becoming mobile, this will allow young people the chance to participate in activities and access our support"
"Along with the development of the mobile unit as a social hub, it will also allow the team to provide much needed mental health and guidance support at a local level. As a secondary school that has benefitted from this work I fully endorse the quality of what they do and how effective they are in helping our community to stay healthy"
Alex Bishop: Local Police Community Support Officer
“Over the last few years services such as the youth club have had to work with depleting resources and even lost funding and I have been impressed with the professionalism of how the Youth Workers and volunteers have adapted to continue to deliver the work they do.”
"Young people can be so very isolated within our beautiful rural county. The solution is to make youth services more mobile and therefore extending the reach of those services into rural communities"
George Streatfeild: High Sheriff of Dorset
"Being able to visit those who are unable to get into town will be a real bonus to their mental welfare and help drive away the feeling of isolation which many have [...] I am so impressed by the imagination and innovation required. I wish you every success as you deserve to raise the money required"
"I hear that the PBP will be operating an expanded portfolio of outreach activities soon! As these activities are inevitably going to be outdoors to begin with, all of us at the Broadwindsor Cricket Club have gladly agreed to open our ground up for the PBP outreach team"
Testimonials from people who have used our services
Counselling Service User
“To say I would not be here today without the help from the therapy I had would be an understatement, I was in the darkest place I had ever felt. With the loving care, help and support from the counsellor I have found many ways to cope with the depression I am no longer controlled by, but live alongside. I have grown in confidence and have by far a better stride in my step. And because of it I am living and breathing here today. They saved my life.”
“I hope you realise how much of a part you have played in helping my daughter gain her confidence and smile again. It is so appreciated. I honestly don’t think she and us would have got as far as we have without you. You have been a massive part of her recovery.”
Youth Club Attendee
“Youth club is a good thing to go to if you need confidence”
Former Youth Club Attendee
"I remember Paula when I was 13 years old and I sat down in your office to talk to you. That day changed my life. Having that person like you to turn to, who helps see a way through was what I needed. There was no-one else. You were like superwoman - you listened and the words you said made so much difference. I can't ever thank you enough."
Café Create Adult Attendee
“I’ve made new friends, I look forward to going out now.”
“Thank you for raising awareness to parents and carers and offering support. I feel you do an amazing job keeping our children safe and I thank you for that.”