Girl standing in bedroomCare

Room for Justice

We create a safe, warm space for a friend in need – a Room for Justice!

Clare Payne, Resident Liaison Officer at Axis, wrote to the Axis Foundation to ask for help on behalf of her friend Justice.

 “Justice is the sole carer for her nan, grandad and her mother who is blind. She is the kindest person who never complains about anything. She always puts everyone else first and I have never known her to ask for anything.”

“Justice can only work part time as she needs to be on hand for simple tasks, such as placing toothpaste on the toothbrush, cooking dinner, or picking up dropped items from the floor. Justice will never be able to go on holiday without her mother, never has a day off and will likely not be able to afford to move into her own property due to financial restraints of working only part time. As she is currently being furloughed , money is even tighter than it ever has been.”

Clare asked if the Foundation could help improve Justice’s bedroom, to make it a place where her friend could relax, away from the stresses of her everyday life. And the Foundation was glad to help both Clare and Justice. For the threadbare neglected bedroom we purchased a brand-new bed, bedding, curtains, poles and carpet. And Axis’ own people, including our Apprentices, decorated Justice’s room and improved the lighting too.

“The transformation has been incredible. Justice is so grateful for the help and support of everyone. I am truly grateful to the Foundation for reminding Justice that good things happen to good people and that her hard work every single day does not go unnoticed.

“That was the message I was trying to give her, and we have certainly achieved that,” says Clare.

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Young disadvantaged children sailingCare

The Ahoy Centre

Donation to The AHOY Centre supports vulnerable children

The Axis Foundation donated £3,750 to The AHOY Centre’s Time2Talk programme. Time2Talk provides 1-2-1 emotional and psychological support for vulnerable children.

Many children at AHOY come from chaotic home-lives, with little guidance. And these Time2Talk 1-2-1 sessions improve teamwork, self-esteem and leaderships skills.

“On behalf of everyone at AHOY, thank you for believing in our work and helping us to continue to have a real positive impact on people’s lives.

“We have now added our mentoring Time2Talk services to all our main programmes. We will continue to embed this vital piece of support into all additional programmes.

“During the period of your grant, The Time2Talk programme was led by AHOY’s Lead Mentor and qualified Psychologist who worked with a team of qualified mentors. The mentors were also instructors on the activity programme.

“They provided emotional and psychological support to our vulnerable children whilst delivering “on the job” mentoring. And they could recognise any behavioural changes and react appropriately during sessions to support them”  – Danny O’Sullivan, Fundraising Manager

More about Ahoy

The AHOY Centre is based in Deptford, one of London’s most deprived areas. The charity enables disadvantaged and disabled young people to take part in water-based activities and train in life skills.

And there’s more about  AHOY here!

Lockdown update

During Lockdown, AHOY’s virtual hub provided online cooking, nautical theory, drama and fitness sessions for members. And AHOY also cooked and delivered over 1,600 hot meals for vulnerable families. Plus, they provided Covid Capsule activity packs to keep members progressing and engaged.

“As parents of an adult with autism and a learning disability, Lockdown was extremely difficult for us as a family. We were very concerned about T’s mental health. All his activities stopped and his normal routines ended. So we were immensely grateful to AHOY for keeping in touch with the Sailability students and for all the effort that went into reopening the centre” – AHOY parent

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Kennet Furniture, man in high vis jacket in store room of furniture and white goodsCommunity

Kennett Furniture Refurbiz

Our donation helps Families in Crisis

We might take them for granted, but white goods such as cookers, washing machines, and fridges are vital to families in crisis, where abuse and relationship breakdown may be factors, where a single parent is often caring for troubled children. White goods help such families live hygienically and eat healthy, home-cooked food. 

The Axis Foundation’s donation of £2,000 will contribute to Kennett Furniture Refurbiz‘s (KFR) Families in Crisis Project Fund whereby KFR will supply and install – free of charge to qualifying families  – essential large white goods which have been refurbished at their premises in Devizes.

KFR estimates that their Families in Crisis project will help 450+ people per/annum.

“Our charity would like to offer our sincere thanks to the Axis Foundation for the amazing donation towards our Families in Crisis project. Since reopening on the 1st of June, following the easing of  COVID-19 restrictions, our Crisis fund has provided 59 items of white goods to struggling families and individuals free of charge. According to the “Reuse Network’s impact calculator”, the cost of buying these items new, would have totalled nearly £9,000 and in doing so we have generated a 1718kg saving in C02 by refurbishing these items. We not only help families to survive, we also help the planet!”– Daniel Thompson, Operation Manager

More about KFR

Kennett Furniture Refurbiz (KFR) visits over 3,000 homes each year collecting and refurbishing furniture and white goods for re-sale to households with limited income in Wiltshire.

Environment protection 

Each year KFR also prevents over 150 tonnes of items of pre-owned furniture and white goods being sent to landfill by refurbishing them and finding them new homes.

Training and employment 

KFR also offers a wide range of volunteering opportunities and trains volunteers to become accredited white goods repair technicians, meaningful qualifications for employment.

There’s more about them here

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Woman and child reading togetherDonations

Literacy Pirates

We get on board to support young children with their reading!

Lacking vital literacy skills holds a person back at every stage of their life. Literacy Pirates helps disadvantaged children who are falling behind in their literacy. The Axis Foundation’s donation of £5,000 to the volunteer programme will benefit 300 children, supporting them with their reading and literacy skills.

“Thank you for your grant of £5,000. We are very pleased to have Axis Foundation on board as a supporter! The money will go towards the costs of running our volunteer programme which is so integral to the success of our Learning Programme. Thank you once again for your support. It is hugely appreciated by everyone at The Literacy Pirates” – Triona Larkin, Head of Fundraising

More about Literacy Pirates

Local schools refer children to the Literacy Pirates. Here they attend a year-long after-school learning programme at one of the two fantastical centres, the ‘Ships’, in Hackney or Haringey, both in east London.

Trained volunteers give the children extra help with literacy skills and support them with their reading. At the same time they help them complete exciting published projects such as books, films and podcasts.

With the help of the Literacy Pirates, children’s reading age improves over 50% faster than age-related expectations.

In January 2014 the Literacy Pirates opened their dedicated learning centre (the Ship) in Dalston and in January 2019 launched a second Ship in Tottenham, Haringey. When the Covid-19 pandemic hit, they built a virtual ship in two weeks, and offered weekly activities during lockdown. There’s even more here!

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young people in boxing gym with tyre plus 10th anniversary logoDonations

Sandwell Asian Development Association

We help stop young people from engaging in crime and antisocial behaviour

Axis Foundation donates £1,000 to Sandwell Asian Development Association (SADA) to purchase computer and boxing equipment.

West Midlands Police, local youth services and the probation service refer young people to SADA. The Inner City Boxing Scheme, based in West Bromwich, W Midlands, runs an eight-week course for young people who are not in education, employment or training (NEET). Professional experts help ten young people train in amateur boxing.  At the end of the course the youngsters get to see a boxing show and continue with their fitness training with experts.

SADA also runs amateur boxing classes, weight training, cardio sessions and boxercise classes as well as a homework support club. . Ex-world boxing champion Ritchie Woodhall supports the organisation in their great work with young people.

Commenting on the success of SADA, a service user said: “The boxing training has helped me to improve as a person and respect my elders. Thank you.”

 

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Two young boxers holding their trophies after a fightDonations

Runcorn Amateur Boxing Club

New boxing equipment gives disadvantaged youngsters a fighting chance through boxing training

Runcorn Amateur Boxing Club, open for nearly 100 years, is a haven for vulnerable youngsters in Cheshire. The Axis Foundation’s £5,000 donation bought new boxing equipment to improve the gym’s facilities. The new boxing equipment makes the club an even more attractive prospect for disadvantaged individuals.

Runcorn’s Head Coach, Darren, said “I’d like to thank Axis on behalf of everyone at the club, as well as personally. It’s great to find like-minded people with the same goal to improve the mindset of Runcorn’s kids on this issue and to help us help them. Again, thank you.”

More about Runcorn Amateur Boxing Club

Runcorn is in the top 5% of deprived areas nationally, so the boxing club is a place for young adults to engage in meaningful activities, away from negative influences like knife crime. It’s an important part of the community that helps children and young adults thrive, as well as exercise.

Preserving the facilities and maintaining equipment is an important part of keeping Runcorn open. Their fully-licensed community boxing club has over 100 members but is always welcoming newcomers. Their Knife Down Glove Up campaign plays a vital part in educating people about the dangers of knife crime. It will reach their immediate members as well as filter through parents to other families in the wider community.

Volunteer coaches make sure mentoring is aligned to the most vulnerable, helping youngsters develop both physically and mentally. The new gym equipment includes a boxing ring, which adds to the clubs great facilities. Runcorn welcomes children aged seven upwards, providing opportunities that could change lives and a space based on equal opportunities.

 

 

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Boy holding a fish with a teacher from the British Disabled Angling AssociationDonations

British Disabled Angling Association

Funding Junior Schools Fishing Project

The British Disabled Angling Association (BDAA) offers fishing opportunities for disabled children, young people and adults across the Midlands.

The donation of £3,300 from the Axis Foundation will help them develop their BDAA Junior Schools Fishing Project This is the first scheme of its kind in the UK and introduces children to fishing as an alternative outdoor activity. The Project will help hundreds of disabled children and young people.

BDAA founder Terry Moseley said: “The Junior school’s disability project has been a long-time milestone for the BDAA. Having such great support and generosity from the Axis Foundation has made this ambition a reality. Hundreds of children, teachers and families have benefited directly from this pilot project and we hope they will continue enjoying fishing in adult life. The funding has provided essential training for teachers and volunteers, as well as clothing, adaptive fishing equipment, transport costs and independence for the students. They now have an additional skill they never knew they could achieve through fishing.”

More About BDAA

Fishing is a fantastic way to experience the outdoors because it is a quiet, calming sport. Learning how to fish empowers children and provides them with a new hobby to enjoy with friends and family and the group engagement particularly benefits children with physical, learning, and sensory disabilities and terminal illness. By working with SEN Schools, the BDAA hopes fishing clubs can become part of academic structures in the future. To find out more, visit https://bdaa.co.uk/.

 Harry Bowen, from Penn Hall School fishing club, commented: “I love to be outside. I can now hold a rod all by myself and have also learned how to be a good fisherman. I like to go fishing with my friends, and I think I will be a really good fisherman when I’m bigger.”

Our second donation in 2020 to BDAA funded an accessible platform so that disabled people can reach the water and enjoy fishing safely. More here

 

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Band Performing at Music therapy charityDisability

Otakar Kraus Music Trust

Music therapy helps children with additional needs

The Axis Foundation’s donation of £8,000 to The Otakar Kraus Music Trust (OKMT) enables seven pupils to attend OK Music School. Here qualified music therapists teach children and young people with physical, learning, mental or neurological disability or illness.

“We are delighted that the Axis Foundation has approved our application to enable seven pupils with disabilities to attend OK Music School for 36 weeks. This will make a huge difference to our music therapy work and allow more children to enjoy the benefits of learning and performing music. Music therapy helps children with disabilities when nothing else can reach them” – Valerie Roy, Fundraising Manager, OKMT

Whilst at the music therapy school, children interact and make friends, reducing isolation. They gain communication skills and become more confident. Improved listening skills and focus help their learning at school. And performing makes them feel happier, proud of their achievements and part of the community. Some children have passed Royal School of Music exams, and some have performed on national radio.

The children say:

‘It makes me feel good about myself – I can do something well!’

“I love music because it gives me confidence and it takes me away from the pressures of real life. I make more friends here than anywhere else”

Parents say:

“OK Music School has been amazing helping my daughter to gain confidence and improve her memory and listening skills. She is able to verbalise that she is proud of herself.”

“E has blossomed, she had very low self-esteem when we started as she was unable to attend school due to her severe anxieties. It has been a Godsend for her mental health.”

OK Music School Case Study

D is 8 and is diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder. He struggles with interacting with people he doesn’t know and with some motor skills. He lacks concentration and has some language and communication difficulties. Therefore it is hard for him to take part in activities where he could enjoy time and space with his peers. D had received speech and language therapy and some music therapy.

But then his mother heard about OKMT through a London Autism group.

D started attending the OKMT Youth Choir, where he was silent for a few months until he finally joined in and started singing along. Then he joined OK Music school where he began to learn to play the piano. He thrived on the stable routine, and playing piano now provides him respite and happiness. His concentration and motor skills have improved, and he is now confident in a group of children and socially more aware of others. He took part in the Christmas concert in 2019 and played Twinkle Twinkle Little Star on the piano which gave him a great sense of achievement. His family were so proud and joyful to watch him playing in the concert in front of a big audience.

D said: “I feel happy and excited to attend my music lessons!”

LOCKDOWN UPDATE from Valerie Roy, Fundraising Manager, OKMT

“During lockdown our therapists were able to adapt to provide online OK Music School lessons for over half of the Music School pupils. These worked remarkably well and provided a positive activity with a familiar face, which helped reduce anxiety and isolation and improve the pupils’ mental well-being. We also provided pre-recorded videos for younger children with disabilities, our online Youth Choir and also online music therapy groups for adults with neurological conditions, mental health problems and for elderly people.

“We have now returned to face-to-face lessons for nearly all pupils, with social distancing, masks and increased cleaning.  We will not be able to hold a Christmas concert this year (2020) but aim to record pupils at lessons performing pieces they have learned and then stream this online for parents and others as an alternative Christmas concert.”

OKMT Survey Results

OKMT recently asked parents what difference OK Music School was making to their child.  The top survey results were:

  • Increased their confidence and self-esteem 100%
  • Improved their concentration and ability to follow instructions 79%
  • Improved their mental well-being  74%
  • Improved their listening skills 68%

 

Read more about this Twickenham-based charity here

 

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People bee-keeping at bee urban charityCommunity

Bee Urban

Improving facilities at a London bee-keeping social enterprise

Bee Urban is a honeybee-centric social enterprise promoting ecologically-sound practice around urban greening, building, farming and particularly bee-keeping.

It’s not just about bees however! Over 4,000 people a year visit the site in Kennington. At Bee Urban they work with disadvantaged, vulnerable people including those with mental health needs and learning difficulties. Local pupils learn about the environment, regeneration and wildlife in curriculum-relevant workshops and Volunteers are always welcome.

The Axis Foundation’s donation of £5,000 will contribute to making important improvements at the premises of this valuable local resource. These include: creating more planting space – to support the honey bees and to increase local biodiversity; improving the hardstanding to make the site safer and more accessible – particularly for those with mobility issues – and supporting a new aquaponics system.

“The funds from Axis Europe will help us to improve the accessibility of our garden space, enhancing the experience for elderly and disabled people who wish to access the grounds. We have wanted to make these improvements for a while but have lacked the resources to do so. The funds will make this possible and will improve everyone’s experience at Bee Urban. Thank You Axis.”
Barnaby Shaw, Bee Urban

The Axis Foundation reached a decade of donations this year. Read more about our 10th Birthday here and share the good news #10YrsGiving

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Two women standing in street working for charity creating routes out of prostitutionCare

Beyond The Streets

Routes out of prostitution for women

The Axis Foundation’s donation of £5,000 supports Beyond the Streets’ Door of Hope. This project offers hope, support and routes out of prostitution for women involved in the London Borough of Tower Hamlets in East London.

“Thank you for the generous donation… Your support will enable our Door of Hope team to continue to provide specialist support and genuine routes out for women involved in prostitution on the streets of the East End.

“You are ensuring that we can reach more women to offer consistency and a compassionate response to overcome the barriers they face. Thank you for standing with us, we are stronger with your support to tackle sexual exploitation in our community” – Josephine Knowles, Co-Director for Services

COVID-19 Update from Beyond the Streets

“As we come to the end of the year, I wanted to take the opportunity to thank you and all at the Axis Foundation for your support through this difficult period. More than ever this year I have been grateful for your commitment to stand with us as we faced many unexpected challenges.

Despite this we have seen the remarkable strength and resilience of the women we are working with. Your support has ensured we can continue to be there for them at times when many other services have been unable to operate and when their need is greatest.

“As we look to the next year, we know we have some exciting plans for Door of Hope. We are expanding our staff team which will ensure that we can support more women with the intensive support they need. At a time when many have become more isolated, we know the power of working together. Thank you for working with us.”

More About Beyond the Streets

Working directly with women, and offering a safe space to talk with someone who understands, Beyond the Streets charity helps women make a practical plan of achievable steps – a route out of prostitution.  They believe in treating women involved in prostitution fairly, positively and respectfully. They provide a safe space for women to talk – and be heard.

Beyond the Streets also offers Beyond Service, a free and confidential call-back service, and email support as well as groups and online forums, Gathered Voices. They also work with public sector, health and charity practitioners and run awareness-raising workshops and projects. More here

CASE STUDY kindly provided by Beyond the Streets
N’s story

N has had a relationship with Door of Hope team for a number of years through our outreach team, who met her dozens of times while she was selling sex on the streets of Whitechapel.

Initially she was reluctant to have anything to do with our outreach volunteers, but over time she began to smile and then accept some of the items we give out to women, eventually giving her number to one of the team. One of our Women’s Support Worker’s called her and arranged to meet in a café. Contact was sporadic, dependent on whether N had a phone at the time or if she came to our drop-in session. She began attending the drop in fairly regularly, sometimes for advice, other times to take part in  activities and enjoy some respite.

Our team would help her access services she needed, supporting her to apply for accommodation. One time we started a universal credit claim, sadly, like many women we work with – she wasn’t able to keep up with the follow up appointments and the claim was closed.

She went to prison on several occasions and was visited by one of our Women’s Support Workers there. Prison was a time of rest and reflection – she left with hope for her future and the changes she was going to make.

The first time she was released on her own, she went straight back to drugs. The second time she was released our Women’s Support Worker met her at the gate and we restarted her Universal Credit application together on the train back to London. Amazingly, she kept with her drug treatment for several weeks after release – she received a script and was supported by our team as well as a specialist drugs worker. This was a hopeful time for her and our team, she’d never maintained drug treatment in the community before.

Sadly, she has since relapsed. Although we share her disappointment about this – we know that relapse is a normal part of the recovery journey. She has demonstrated that she can do it and we’ll continue to support her to access drug and alcohol treatment again, as well as supporting her with the root causes of her addiction.

 

 

 

 

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