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Adullam residents support their community

Adullam residents support their community

A grant from the Coronavirus Community Support Fund awarded to Fleet House, Adullam’s centre for single homeless women in Bolton, is helping them to prove that #communitiescan make a difference.

The psychological impact lockdown was and is still having on Fleet House residents – who include women fleeing domestic violence, some with chaotic life styles, some on rehabilitation programmes- was quickly recognised.

Staff got together with them to discuss the effects and what could be done to support them.

Initially they said they were struggling as a result of support organisations temporarily withdrawing visits and appointments. They needed contact and ways to pass the time.

Managers and Learning and Engagement Coordinators discussed what was possible with them and their ideas resulted in more baking, purchase of a games table and of some gardening equipment. Craft sessions were also organised.

The success of the latter, together with residents saying they see other people getting involved and making a difference during the pandemic but feel they can’t, led to planning a craft room and applying for funding to help set it up.

An application was made for Government funding through the Coronavirus Community Support Fund with residents involved in the bid. Their thoughts, ideas and aspirations for the project were all included.

The residents said they don’t have the finances to help others in the pandemic, or the knowledge and skill set to do support work but want to contribute in some way and show they have a value in the community.

Consequently, Adullam is getting them involved within the local community, making a range of items, from face masks to bunting and bags. There is a local food bank that has supported our service users and others during these difficult times, so Fleet House residents are making masks for them, their volunteers and to give them to families who are struggling to buy them.

Sewing machines, tools, and materials to carry out this work have been purchased using the Support Fund money.

Fleet House was delighted to have been awarded the grant, and work is now underway to get the craft room set up. Residents were involved in choosing the machines, the fabric and tools, and staff have worked with them to design what the craft room being built will look like.

This gives them the ownership, satisfaction, and fulfilment of delivering this project and making a difference to their community. Long after the pandemic ends, the craft room will be there as a learning and engagement resource.

Residents have said the project is giving them a sense of purpose and they can’t wait for it to go into full production. One said: “To feel we can help others is amazing. Spending time together planning and doing the work gives us a real lift as well.”

We’re proud to say this #communitycan.