Horticultural Therapy Trust is based in Plymouth, working from a large city-centre allotment. It is run by two experienced gardeners who are trained in social and therapeutic horticulture, mindfulness and counselling.  The Trust supports the well-being of people suffering from depression, anxiety, and those recovering from more severe physical or mental illness.  It offers a safe, calm and nurturing environment for beneficiaries to develop their confidence and self-esteem, learn how to socialise, to gain skills in horticulture, or just to take time away from other pressures to work towards improved health.

The Foundation has made a £3,000 grant towards the running costs of Horticultural Therapy Trust at the February 2020 meeting.  This will help with the charity’s aims of increasing numbers of regular participants in the core allotment project; assist with the accommodation of new groups from other local mental health organisations; and contribute to the undertaking of gardening work in the local community.

www.horticultural-therapy-trust.org

 

 

Storybook Dad’s overall aim is to help families deal with the trauma of separation and stay connected, and thereby improving successful reintegration into the family upon release. The scheme operates in more than 100 prisons across the UK from its base in HMP Channings Wood in Devon. The scheme helps imprisoned parents to maintain contact with their families by enabling them to record personalised bedtime stories which are then sent to children on CDs and DVD. This improves prisoners’ self-esteem and perceived value as parents, as well as bringing comfort to the children, reminding them that they are loved and missed.

At the February 2020 meeting, the Allen Lane Foundation offered funding of £10,000, payable in two instalments over two years. The grant will contribute towards general running costs.

www.storybookdads.org.uk

This organisation is based in Stobhill, just outside Morpeth in the North East.  It runs various services and activities aimed at improving the lives of local residents, including employment advice, training and skills development, community projects such as a befriending service, handyman/gardening service, and schemes to benefit children and families.

At the February 2020 meeting, Allen Lane Trustees agreed a £10,000 grant towards an expansion of services specifically for older people. Funding will contribute towards salary costs of the project officer and volunteer coordinator to enable this to happen.  It will include an expansion of the befriending service, continuing existing weekly clubs and initiating additional clubs – a gardening club for over 60’s, a silver suffers IT club, a drop-in cuppa club and a Memory Lane and a reminiscence project.  An ‘in-school’ awareness project called ‘Remember Me’ will involve older people engaging with schoolchildren to promote understanding between the ages.   Around 400 older people are expected to benefit.  The project will improve the quality of life of isolated older people, improve self-esteem, alleviate loneliness and give them an opportunity to feel integrated and valued in the community.

www.ncenterprise.org.uk

 

SHARe (Support and Help for Asylum seekers and Refugees) Knowsley was set up to offer a hand of welcome and friendship to the growing numbers of asylum seekers and refugees being housed in the local area. The metropolitan borough of Knowsley is part of Merseyside, and comprises the towns and districts of Kirkby, Prescot, Huyton, Whiston, Halewood, Cronton and Stockbridge. A weekly drop-in at Prescot Methodist Church has available a selection of foodstuffs, toiletries, nearly new clothing and household items at nominal costs. Volunteers are on hand to help with advice, information and help, and they also support individuals with outreach and advocacy work, accompanying them to appointments at agencies for example. SHARe Knowsley also runs seven English language classes each week, and there are social activities organised throughout the year.

A contribution of £4,000 was offered to the charity at the February 2020 meeting of Trustees. This will help with the provision of English classes, and over the coming year will benefit around 150 asylum seekers and refugees.

During Lockdown SHARe Knowsley have continued to provide support during this difficult time by delivering food parcels as well as toiletry and house hygiene packs. English lessons have continued online and one to one support has still been available.

www.shareknowsley.org.uk

Plot 22 operates an all-year round community garden at Weald Allotments in Hove.  It provides communal garden and outdoor cooking for local residents and groups experiencing specific challenges.  The organisation offers an opportunity for people to be outdoors, connect to the seasons, and spend time together.  Its work benefits various groups, including pre-school children and their parents, those with mental health issues, women who have suffered abuse or domestic violence, and the elderly, particularly those with dementia.

It is for a project benefiting people with dementia that the Foundation has offered funding. The DIG project offers monthly gardening sessions, where people with dementia and their carers or family members enjoy a relaxing but engaging experience in a friendly and safe outdoor environment. Participants are encouraged to participate in specific garden tasks and can create items they can take home such as making a posy of herbs. Each session is guided by a sessional worker who will support people of any ability, and includes refreshment and a seasonal poem with the support of a local project Story Chaplain. Around 20 people over the year will benefit, alongside 40 family members/carers.  A grant of £2,500 awarded in February 2020 will contribute towards project costs.

www.plot22.org

 

The overall aim of Rebuild East Midlands is “to end the cycle of trafficking and slavery one person at a time”.  The organisation works with individuals who have been victims of trafficking and modern slavery, to provide long-term intensive and targeted casework support.  The work intends to support people to rebuild their lives and is focussed on six key areas: housing and living independently; keeping safe; relationships and community; physical health; emotional and mental health; and education, employment and training.  Rebuild also runs two ‘Connect’ group sessions each week – these provide a stepping stone for individuals to build self-confidence with the aim that they will feel able to access other local community groups or activities.  Groups generally have between four and six attendees, and in the last year 15 individuals received casework support.

Allen Lane has awarded funding which will contribute towards the salaries of two part-time caseworkers.  The grant, made at the February 2020 meeting, was for £5,000.  Outcomes of the work include: increased sense of safety and connection for individuals in their community; individuals being aided to move into supported accommodation; and a significant decrease in the level of support individuals require over the 12 months, or individuals exiting as they no longer require support.

www.rebuildproject.org

 

Triumph Over Phobia is a national charity that was established to provide support to people who experience phobias, Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) and related anxiety disorders.  It uses an evidence-based self-help specialised pathway to aid people’s recovery.  A helpline is available six days a week, which offers advice, information and signposting to including individuals, carers and family members, as well as health professionals.  In addition, the charity facilitates a network of self-help groups across the UK.  Currently there are nine, running weekly in Bath, Bristol, Cardiff, London, Plymouth, Southampton, Jersey, Guernsey and Torquay.  There is also a ‘virtual’ group, three affiliated groups, and volunteers are in place to start further groups in other areas.

At the February 2020 Trustee meeting, a grant of £9,000 was agreed – offered as a three-year grant £3,000 per annum.  This funding is provided as Triumph Over Phobia moves the minimum age it can support people from 18 to 16.  This will allow vital continuity of service as young people make the transition from child to adult mental health services.  The grant will help with costs relating to updating resources, additional training for volunteers and management time.  Outcomes for beneficiaries include improved self-worth, confidence and wellbeing; improved mental and physical wellbeing; and improved family and work life, and ultimately a fulfilling role in the community

www.topuk.org

 

Newton Heath Youth Project is a community organisation working in the Newton Heath area of Manchester.  Initially set up to work with disadvantaged children and young people, it has expanded to offer various community projects, activities and events to benefit adults, families and older people.

The Foundation has offered a grant of £8,000 towards a specific project working with women from the local Traveller community.  This project began in 2018 with a weekly drop-in and safe place to meet – it was requested by the women themselves as there were no specific services or groups in the area that catered for them.  The group has grown quickly and there are now 20-25 women attending each week.  Activities range from educational art, crafts, cooking and visits to places of interest, many of the women use the time to seek advice and guidance on everyday issues, some unique to the Traveller community.  Support is provided including advocacy and advice around help in dealing with problems at school for the women’s children; or help developing CVs, applying for jobs or accommodation for example.  Overall this work’s outcomes include the women having improved confidence and self-esteem; improved knowledge of, and access to, local services; and better community cohesion in the local area.

 

Finding Rhythms aims to change people and society through music.  It has developed a range of music programmes working in prisons and community settings, led by musicians and artists.  Each project involves the participants working together to write and record an album of music which is then professionally produced.  The project has been run at a number of prisons across East Anglia, London and the South East. Outcomes for participants include: experience of working in a high-intensity professional environment; increased ability to communicate and collaborate; improved prospects for employment and further study; increased optimism, positivity and feelings of connectedness to others

Funding of £5,214 over two years has been agreed at the February 2020 Trustee meeting. This grant will contribute directly towards work in HMP Peterborough – within the closed women’s prison.  It will help fund three 36-hour projects benefitting 30-45 women prisoners.

www.finding-rhythms.co.uk

Based in Middlesbrough, Open Door works across areas of the North East, particularly Teesside and the Tees Valley. It’s core work is to provide advice, information and advocacy for refugees and asylum seekers. The charity offers three weekly drop-ins and one-to-one casework throughout the week. Around 900 people benefit over a typical year – and are supported with a whole host of issues including destitution support, benefits advice, finding jobs and training, ESOL, and the provision of a hot meal and weekly food parcels where necessary. A large part of what Open Door does is the provision of asylum and refugee accommodation through a hosting and housing project – this has expanded over recent years, and it now manages 39 houses including three properties that are owned by the charity, acting as a social lettings agent.

In February 2020, Allen Lane Trustees agreed to make a grant of £10,000 to Open Door. The funding will contribute towards general running costs of the charity. Outcomes of the work include that asylum seekers at risk of, or experiencing, destitution will be assessed and registered for support; newly recognised refugees will be supported with welfare, benefits, housing, and employment help; and at least ten additional destitute asylum seekers will be provided with safe, furnished homes.

www.opendoornortheast.com