First and foremost, I hope you and your friends & families remain safe and well during this difficult time. Secondly, I would like to thank you for your time and consideration.
Last year, I graduated in Politics, Philosophy and Economics and developed substantial interest in working for the Civic Sector. Subsequently, I began volunteering and raising funds for Empowr-U, an organisation whose programmes and services are crucial to nullifying extensive funding cuts across Coventry. From 2010 to 2019, investment in youth services decreased by 80% in the city.
The organisation's aims and activities
Empowr-U provide cost-free mental & physical well-being and also educational sessions for 1000 young people across Coventry & Warwickshire. We aim to engage, inspire, educate and empower disadvantaged youth in Coventry and Warwickshire.
What are we asking you to fund?
We are asking you to fund the expansion and continuation of our Activities Hub until the end of the year. We initially received funds from the Heart of England to run an activities hub for disadvantaged young people in Spon End. Whilst adhering to government guidance, we have been running physical activity sessions and lending out sports equipment to local families and children to give them the opportunity to improve their physical well-being. Activities and tasks also encourage the development of life skills such as leadership, team-working and inter-personal skills.
Alongside physical activities, we have also been having educational discussions on community matters and safety with participants to ensure they are aware of topical issues such as online grooming, which has risen in cases during the pandemic crisis. With the help of additional funds, we can continue to run and expand this social distancing programme until the end of the year.
Why fund the Activities Hub?
The Activities Hub is already up and running therefore, all contributions will go towards giving disadvantaged children more opportunities for a longer period of time. It has been running for the past 2 months and has been successful so far, with 20 disadvantaged young people attending our sessions every week.
Our Activities Hub is also being attended by numerous BAME individuals. Therefore, similar to before the pandemic, we want to ensure communities remain closer knit and help reduce racism and discrimination among younger generations.
How are we going to expand the programme using the funds?
We know numerous individuals that suffer from mental health problems such as anxiety, isolation and depression, and through our contact with parents of this community, we understand that these feelings have exacerbated since the beginning of the pandemic. We were running one session per week but with your contributions, we hope to run an additional session per week that will focus more on mental well-being through a variety of arts and crafts and mental well-being exercises and sessions.
Arts activities will include exploring emotions with different colours such as happiness, sadness, anger and worry, to help children identify feelings and individuals finding words and pictures from old newspapers to build self-portraits of themselves in order to develop confidence and self-esteem. Mental well-being exercises including mindfulness will also be delivered within our programme. An example includes the silent game, where we ask children to remain quiet and still for a minute or more and when the silence game ends, we ask participants what they heard or saw during this quiet phase to help them understand their feelings. Additional activities include mindfulness eating, which can combat over-eating and improve physical well-being through helping bring participants to the attention of flavours and tastes of different foods and help them realise the effects that different foods have on how their bodies feel.
How much are we asking for?
We are asking for £3620 to help continue our Activities Hub till December. Please see below for a breakdown of costs.
Mentor Costs- £35 x 1.5 hours (2 sessions per week) 16 weeks = £1120
Coordination- £10.50 x 10 hours per week x 16 weeks= £1680
Equipment= more sports, arts and crafts PPE Equipment- £500
Rental costs= £20 x 16= £320
We know it is an extremely difficult time for everyone and every single penny that is donated can help this programme run for longer.
Here are some pictures of our activities hub at the Rose Community Centre.