Support us during the COVID19 crisis

by Sunshine Wood in Billingham, England, United Kingdom

Support us during the COVID19 crisis

£5,300

raised in 181 days

95

supporters

Following forced closure due to the COVID-19 pandemic we have not qualified for any government funding. We need your help!

by Sunshine Wood in Billingham, England, United Kingdom

New stretch target

Any funds will be used to buy equipment to support outdoor learning.


I renovated Billingham Beck Valley Country Park during the summer of 2019.  The building is owned by Stockton Borough Council had not been in use for over a decade.  I was tasked with injecting a new lease of life to the building and bring footfall to the country park.  

As a single mum of two my heart and soul went into this project.  I applied for grants but received no business start up help and used my own finances to fund the project.  

I opened the business employing 6 staff in October 2019. 

Sunshine Wood is a parent led educational centre set in woodland.  Inside we have woodland themed role play areas, craft and creativity corner and a sensory snug. We have a small refreshment area where we supply foods provided by other small businesses.  

The COVID19 pandemic forced closure and we closed our doors on 16/3/20.  Since I have been told I do not qualify for any grants or funding to help keep this business operating.  I have been lucky enough to furlough my staff but cannot furlough myself as I am not an employee of my own business.  The HMRC after many calls and pleas for help have advised me to seek insolvency. There is no help out there for new businesses.

We recently welcomed families from local charity Leos Neonatal.  Many children have delayed development and our facility has been a safe haven for parents to meet and socialise alongside enriching their child with early educational benefits. 

Most of our customers are local.  When I had the idea for this project it came from working alongside local childrens centres that were closing due to government cuts.  

Sunshine Wood has created a safe learning environment for families to play, learn and grow together.  

Stockton Borough Council tasked me with making the park more accessible to families and I feel I have done exactly that.  But during this difficult time they have also offered no support following the building having no rateable value.

I have exhausted the insurance avenue and spoke for hours with Business Support Forums and the HMRC.  Time is of the essence for me now.  My team are amazing and have been a great support.  I want to keep them employed and I want to keep this facility open and be able to continue with the exciting plans I had made previous to the worlds pandemic

WE NEED YOUR HELP.  HELP US TO REOPEN FOLLOWING THIS PANDEMIC

IF YOU ARE A BUSINESS, SCHOOL, INDIVIDUAL WHO CAN GIVE DURING THESE DIFFICULT TIMES I WOULD BE ETERNALLY GRATEFUL.

Love & Sunshine

Sarah

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