Green City Action
The grant has enabled the promotion and co-ordination of food growing sessions for women showing how to grow a variety of fruit, vegetables and herbs including diverse culture crops. The group is culturally diverse with women originating from China, the Congo, Bangladesh, Slovakia and Pakistan who are experiencing food poverty in their lives.
Women have gained new skills in growing food, increased their confidence and made new friends, improved their English, increased physical activity, shared recipes and increased their cooking skills. The women have also brought family members to the allotment to show their work and take part in activities.
The grant from The Brelms Trust enabled Imagine If to deliver drama based workshops to offenders in prison and ex-offenders in the community.
Prison workshops were delivered in HMP Leeds and Doncaster and improved the self-confidence, communication skills and team working of 20 offenders, equipping them to be more employable on release and to play a fuller role in their communities. We were able to conduct our project to the highest standards, learn from the process to improve our offer to other prisons and agencies that work with offenders and produce evidence for further work in this field.
The grant facilitated the hire of Campsmount Sports Academy for 1 year to provide a weekly sports programme for disadvantaged children in the Askern area of Doncaster. The hire of the Academy has provided a venue for the young people to engage in a safe and structured way, enabling them to focus on developing skills and interests that are relevant to both themselves and their peers.
The ability to promote team activities within this environment, encourages a support infra-structure which will survive, both inside and outside of the project, thus developing an inclusive youth culture within the community.
York Blind & Partially Sighted
The grant enabled 112 group members (blind and partially-sighted people) to make and maintain social connections, whilst participating in an activity they enjoy. The funding made it possible to provide opportunities not available elsewhere.
We have been able to continue with established groups such as our weekly exercise class, monthly audio-book, singing and adapted games groups to name a few. This reliability is greatly valued by group members, who gain great enjoyment and development opportunities they would not have otherwise.
Whirlow Hall Farm
Whirlow Hall Farm’s ethos and activities are centred on inclusion. The grant has helped to support our Learning Mentor, a staff post which plays a critical role in ensuring we are equipped to respond to the needs of a diverse range of children and young people. The post has focused on tutoring/supporting our learners with a) learning/developmental/behavioural/mental health/physical difficulties and disabilities and b) who are ‘vulnerable’ due to challenging family and wider social circumstances. The post of Learning Mentor has been particularly critical in ensuring the effective engagement and achievement of learners who have benefited from our expanding Post-14 years and Alternative Education Programmes.
In 2016-17 Citizens Advice York received over 5,000 benefits enquiries. All volunteers are trained in benefits advice as this is one of the highest areas of demand. However, the benefits system is highly complex and a specialist case worker is needed to support the team, and to offer extra expertise when cases are referred to tribunal. The Brelms Trust grant was hugely helpful as it contributed to the cost of a specialist welfare benefits worker who supported a team of volunteers to provide a high-quality service for clients.