Thank You Christmas Cards in displaydisadvantaged

Local Families Say Thank You

Axis Foundation supports families who were struggling at Christmas

An Axis’ employee applied to the Axis Foundation to support her neighbours at Christmas time. Many were facing loneliness as well as heat and fuel poverty.

And so the Axis Foundation agreed to award  £1,000 which was shared between 27 struggling households.

Our donation paid for 17 Christmas dinners, three supermarket vouchers, two heated blankets, seven heated clothes airers and six toy vouchers.

The residents were visibly touched to receive these special gifts and were all very grateful, sending us cards, notes and messages.

“G says thank you very much for her heated blanket, she is very pleased with it. She was staying with us over Christmas as she has only just come out of hospital. She’s been using it a lot.”

“Thank you, you don’t know how much this means to me.”

“We used the voucher to buy D a pack of Fimo modelling clay. We are going to make each other Christmas ornaments for our tree as keepsakes.”

“Thank you for our Christmas dinner tickets. My neighbours J, C and I met up just after Christmas. We plan to do it on a regular basis, perhaps every three to four weeks. C especially enjoyed it as he doesn’t get out so much.”

a mother and father with babydisadvantaged

Little Stars

Providing essential baby items for disadvantaged, vulnerable families

Little Stars provides quality essentials for babies, children and pregnant women. And so they alleviate stress and financial pressures for disadvantaged, vulnerable families in Shropshire.

The Axis Foundation donated £3,175 to Little Stars’ Community Hubs Project. This donation will purchase 12 months supplies of nappies, wipes and baby toiletries.

“To receive this amazing amount of money from Axis foundation has ensured we can continue our Community Hub work, providing families with the essentials they need for their children.

“Our hub work is extremely important because we are out in the communities that are in need of this support. The money will enable us to expand our hubs as we now have the funds to be able to deliver the basic essentials that babies and young children really need. Thank you to the board for providing us with this grant” – Leanne Simcoe Founder and CEO

More on the Community Hubs Project

Little Stars created their Community Hubs Project in response to the growing demand for their services. There are currently four Little Stars community hubs, working with Early Help teams and local food banks, where families can access essential items

More about Little Stars

Little Stars helps the 26% of children living in poverty across Shropshire (research from End Child Poverty). They help disadvantaged families through their baby bank, community hubs and school uniform services. They provide quality pre-loved bundles, donated by the local community, supplemented by new equipment and basic provisions. Little Stars works across their community in partnership with midwives, social workers, early help teams, schools, food banks, and domestic abuse charities. They have, to date, supported over 1,000 referred beneficiaries.

There’s more here

Man wearing hat and glasses holding a Victoria sponge cakedisadvantaged

Cherry Orchard Garden Services (COGS)

COGS’ Grow-Cook-Eat project helps adults with learning disabilities gain skills and independence

The Axis Foundation donated £1,000 to help COGS purchase ingredients for their Grow-Cook-Eat project. The programme teaches learners how to cook simple, easy meals that they can replicate at home. They can use fruit and vegetables they have grown on-site at COGS. These make a healthy alternative to microwaved ready meals. Learning how to cook and eat healthily brings many long-term benefits to learners – and their carers and families too. We estimate that around 17 people on this programme will benefit directly from our donation.

“We are so grateful to The Axis Foundation for generously donating towards our Grow-Cook-Eat project. Cooking is one of the most valuable skills our service users can learn. By helping us purchase additional ingredients to enhance their home-grown fruit and vegetables, the Axis Foundation is contributing to many life-changing outcomes. It enables our service users to learn a whole spectrum of skills which all contribute to them living an independent lifestyle as they grow themselves. Thank you!” –  Beckie Flynn, Treasurer

Two service tell us how Grow-Cook-Eat project benefits them!

“It helps me because I can now make my own sandwiches, go into a shop and recognise ingredients and have new ideas to try to do myself at home’”- Tom

“It has helped by teaching me new things to cook. It teaches me to cook on my own and grow some vegetables I can make into meals” – George

More about COGS

COGS Prepares 4 Life CIO provides day opportunities for adults with learning disabilities, autism and other complex needs in Burntwood, Staffordshire, and surrounding areas. Through gardening, cooking, woodwork, travel training and basic education, COGS’ members gain new skills, find friendships and embrace the confidence and independence needed for everyday life. There’s more about COGS here


Strength & Learning Through Horses

Helping children in crisis to a positive future

Strength & Learning Through Horses helps young people in mental health crisis turn their lives around.

The Axis Foundation awarded Strength & Learning Through Horses a grant of £12,000 to purchase a modular building to help them continue their services – whatever the weather.

“We are very grateful for your recent incredibly generous donation of £12,000 … Thanks to your donation, we will be able to purchase a modular building in which to teach our therapy sessions. These sessions help young people in mental health crisis to begin to turn their lives around and move towards a positive future. Thanks to your support we will be able to help more of these young people access our life-changing service” – Dr Hockley and Rosie Bensley, Founders and Joint CEOs

More about Strength & Learning Through Horses

Strength & Learning Through Horses is London’s largest equine-assisted therapy and education charity currently supporting 400-450 young people in crisis per year. Many children have experienced significant trauma and neglect and are either excluded from mainstream education or considered at risk of exclusion.

The charity uses the natural ability of horses to read and respond to human emotions to engage young people in the process of learning about their own behaviours and emotions.

More here


The Children’s Book Project

Giving the gift of books to disadvantaged children

The Children’s Book Project collects new and gently-used books and redistributes them free to children and young people growing up in poverty.

The Axis Foundation’s donation of £3,500 to The Children’s Book Project will completely fund ten Pop up Book Huts in London schools – from where the children can choose their free books.

‘We would like to express our enormous gratitude to the Axis Foundation for its generosity. As a small, grassroots charity, we are entirely reliant on fundraising. This donation will have a big impact on the Children’s Book Project, helping us put books straight into the hands of the children that need them most” – Liberty Venn, Founder

And there’s more…

Axis volunteers Alfie Shortall, Phil Cornell and Arjinder Bhogal collected and delivered the book huts to local schools. And their colleagues Jake Thomas, Jasveen Grewal, Thomas Crane, Steve Harpley and Daniel Brownett sorted books at the charity’s warehouse in Westminster. The Axis Midlands team is currently hosting a book drive for The Children’s Book Project to support communities that present a high level of socioeconomic disadvantage and/or emotional need.

More about The Children’s Book Project

The Children’s Book Project charity sees first-hand how giving children access to books makes amazing things happen; vocabularies expand, empathy grows, imaginations are ignited and children learn.

‘’Receiving these books is changing the reading culture of our school in a positive way…The Book Project through their generosity has enabled us to provide books to children who had none at home’’ – Teacher, Southern Road Primary, E13

You can read more about the incredible work of The Children’s Book Project here

young people and yellow vandisadvantaged

GASP Motor Project

Helping train disadvantaged youngsters in motor mechanics

GASP Motor Project provides hands-on practical training in motor mechanics for disadvantaged youngsters – many may be excluded from education or face multiple challenges at home.

The Axis Foundation donated £10,000 to help GASP buy a van/mobile workshop, which enables them take their courses out to schools and youth organisations across Surrey.

“Thank you so much for this fantastic news.  We are so very excited about getting our new van. This will enable to help even more youngsters benefit from our training with GASP. They secure accredited AQA qualifications with us which they can use as evidence of commitment, hard work and an interest in motor mechanics. Many move on to local colleges, inspired by learning with us, knowing they can move forwards with their lives in a new direction and with a positive outlook. Thank you so much to everyone at the Axis Foundation”  –  Moyra Matravers, Fundraising and Business Development Manager

Case Study kindly provided by GASP
OG’s story

Having been excluded from mainstream school, OG was attending a Pupil Referral Unit. He had been involved with the police and felt rejected when he joined GASP, having a negative attitude and sense of failure. He said: “School doesn’t want me, I really like it here. They pushed me off to different places each week, but GASP is really good. I have learnt loads here. I really like making the metal toolbox.” Since joining GASP, OG has achieved a staggering seven AQAs.

More about GASP

GASP Motor Project provides hands-on practical training in motor mechanics for youngsters who are disadvantaged in multiple ways: referrals from the youth criminal justice system and school refusers or those who have been excluded from mainstream education as well as refugees, young carers, children living in the care system and many youngsters with special educational needs or living in challenging home circumstances. GASP is widely recognised in Surrey as a provider of non-judgmental, caring and practical support.

More here


Richmond Furniture Scheme

Helping refugees in Richmond

Richmond Furniture Scheme supplies newly-housed refugees and disadvantaged people with essential items.

The Axis Foundation donated £5,625 towards Richmond Furniture Scheme’s Kitchen Starter Kit Programme which provides vital basic items so that families can cook and eat (often accommodation comes unfurnished). As Richmond has been declared a ‘Sanctuary’ for refugees, with an additional influx of refugees from Afghanistan and Ukraine, the need to help these families start their new lives is even greater.

“This fabulous donation will help disadvantaged people from all sorts of backgrounds including the homeless, people with mental ill health, refugees, people affected by domestic breakdown and violence. This is practical help that goes straight  to people who need it. Thank you ’’ – CEO Simon Westgarth

The 35-piece set our donation provides contains kitchen essentials for a family of two, plus a toaster, kettle, and iron and (sometimes) a microwave which greatly helps them keep energy costs down.

More about Richmond Furniture Scheme

Richmond Furniture Scheme is based in Twickenham and serves both London Boroughs of Richmond Upon Thames and Wandsworth. In the year 2021 to 2022 they helped 329 local households in need; supported 55 volunteers who worked within the scheme; cleaned, refurbished and recycled 94 tonnes of furniture which was then delivered to those in need and the local community.

They work closely with the local authorities, local charities, churches and schools who are also their main sources of referrals and of information concerning what is needed and what services are required in the disadvantaged segment of the community.

There’s more here



Off the Fence

Saving lives of homeless people

Off The Fence supports homeless, vulnerable and socially excluded people in Brighton and Hove in Sussex.

In 2023 the Axis Foundation donated £7,000 to Off the Fence Trust to purchase 200 Vango Atlas Heavyweight sleeping bags for the rough sleepers who use the services of Antifreeze, the charity’s day centre for the homeless, part of an emergency outreach.

“We are so grateful, as are our clients. Until they are housed, each of our clients uses at least two high quality sleeping bags a year, demand fuelled by wear and tear or theft. £7,000 enables us to purchase 200 military quality sleeping bags that will undoubtedly prevent deaths from exposure, illness and the cold through the Winter months. This is helps us meet a significant proportion of our outdoor budget in this area”  – Roy Stannard, Head of Income-Generation and Comms

We followed this up with a further donation of £4,750 to purchase hygiene materials (including toothpaste, shampoo, razors, shaving foam and cleaning products), hot water bottles (for distribution on the street) and waterproof jackets (for warmth and protection in the cold winter).

“The Axis Foundation is bulwark of compassion in an uncertain world” –  Roy Stannard, Head of Income-Generation and Comms

“Thank you for your compassion and generosity. Lives will be saved” –  Jane Leaver, Office Finance and Individual Giving Co-ordinator

More About Off the Fence

Off The Fence Trust works with vulnerable and socially excluded people in the Brighton and Hove area. Over 700 people use Antifreeze, the charity’s day centre for the homeless. Some users (for example if they own a dog,) have elected to remain rough sleepers. In 2021-22 Antifreeze’s services were used 1,775  times. Whilst many rough sleepers can be accommodated in the City’s hotels and B&Bs, this is only a temporary solution, and the numbers are rising steeply.

Off The Fence Trust tackles social and spiritual poverty, and helps members of the community who are facing crisis situations with little or no support. Their priority is to provide a practical, emotional and psychological safety net through three projects:

  • Antifreeze, a day centre for the homeless – part of an emergency outreach to rough sleepers
  • Schools’ programme for 6-18-year-old children
  • Gateway, a women’s centre supporting women in crisis

There’s more about their work here


Centred Horseplay

Helping hard to reach youngsters open all year round

With specially-trained horses, Centred Horseplay helps hard-to-reach young people. The Axis Foundation donated £7,091 towards building an indoor arena in a barn. Once built, the new premises will enable Centred Horseplay to stay open all year round. They will then be able to help even more hard-to-reach youngsters: many are experiencing drug and alcohol misuse, anxiety and eating disorders, neglect, abuse, aggression, and bullying.

“Thank you so much! This is going to make such a difference! This vital new facility will allow the charity to stay open all year round. Many of the young people who come to us are suffering from social exclusion and depression. All of this is exasperated in dark and cold winters. Our new arena will be well ventilated but also partially undercover so these very lonely young people can still participate in our courses throughout the winter. Our new location is incredibly peaceful and with your help we will be open all your round” – Marie Longstaff, Fundraiser

More about Centred Horseplay

Centred Horseplay describes itself as ‘often the last resort’. It helps young people referred to them by professional support workers and partners. Crucially these are children who are not progressing within conventional services, who may be ‘stuck’ or disengaged from talk-based support. Their fun and busy ReStart behaviour-change programme transfers successful behavioural training techniques for equines into the human world.

Centred Horseplay was founded in 2015 and is based in Cirencester, Gloucestershire. It is the approved Gloucestershire Hub for world renowned charity TheHorseCourse. Centred Horseplay’s work has helped reduce re-offending and improved attendance and engagement with school/work/training. Multiple external, independent and academic reports testify to the efficacy of this equine-assisted approach.

There’s more about Centred Horseplay here

This donation was made utilising the Travis Perkins Community Fund.


Children in Wellingtons on waterfall at Youth Adventure Trustdisadvantaged

Youth Adventure Trust

Helping vulnerable young people gain vital lifelong life skills through outdoor adventure

Our three annual donations to Youth Adventure Trust help vulnerable young people gain resilience, confidence and new skills that will last a lifetime – all through outdoor adventure.

“We are so grateful for the support of the Axis Foundation and your help in enabling vulnerable young people from Salisbury to flourish. The young people on our programme need our support more than ever – we simply couldn’t provide our life changing programme without donations from our generous supporters like the Axis Foundation. Thank you!” – Louise Balaam, Director of Fundraising

Year 1

In 2022, our first donation, of £3,791 to Youth Adventure Trust enabled six Year 7 pupils from Salisbury to join Youth Adventure Trust’s programme for a year. During this time the young people attended residential camps and activity days which use outdoor adventure as a platform for development.

Year 2

Our Trustees then donated a further grant of £4,950 to fund the six pupils for their second year: they attended Coastal Camp and Forest Camp, stretching their comfort zone with activities such as paddle boarding, kayaking, climbing and sleeping out on the forest floor. By challenging themselves in a supportive environment, they learn that they are capable of more than they thought!

Year 3

And then we donated £2,030 to fund these same pupils, now in Year 3! The final year of the programme is four Pathway Days:  ‘Look Back Day’, ‘Give Back Day’, ‘Looking Ahead Day’, and ‘Celebration’. At graduation they receive their Pathway Packs including ASDAN certification. We wish them all well in their final year.

Award Winners

We were delighted to hear that Youth Adventure Trust was honoured with The Pride of Wiltshire Award in March 2023: county publication Wiltshire Life presents this award to organisations which have made a significant contribution to the county and will continue to be an asset for many years to come. Well done!

More About Youth Adventure Trust

Youth Adventure Trust helps up to 360 young people gain lifelong life skills a year. The programme is completely free of charge to the young people, their families and referral agencies.

Even more about Youth Adventure Trust here


  • 1
  • 2