Donation refurbishes local centre helping to build community spirit
Dads Lane Community Association founded a vital community centre in Stirchley, Birmingham. And the Axis Foundation donated £5,000 to help refurbish the café/kitchen here. The café/kitchen will provide refreshments and community meals as well as space for knit and natter, parenting and mental health groups.
“We are over the moon to receive this generous grant from the Axis Foundation. It will make a huge difference in the refurbishment of this important local community centre.
”This area has few local facilities, activities, or general spaces for the local community. It lacks the amenities that usually cultivate community spirit and unity. There are pockets of real deprivation, disadvantage and isolation here. And so people lack opportunities to address their issues” – Steve Squires, Chair of Trustees
More about the works
The plans at Dads Lane include creating a community garden with raised beds. There will be training spaces for employability and volunteering programmes as well as the café/kitchen. The centre will be fully accessible inside and out.
Axis in the Midlands
Our parent company Axis Europe works for many of the Midlands’ major social housing landlords from our local offices in Oldbury. In accordance with our Core Value 6 – A community we contribute to will welcome and value us – and in addition to Axis’ regular CI activities throughout the Midlands, the Foundation was very pleased to support Dads Lane Community Association. The Axis Foundation is proud to say we are ‘at the heart of the community’.
You can read more about Dads Lane Community Association here
Combating loneliness in Brentwood at Hutton Community Centre
Hutton Community Centre (HCC) is an important community hub in Brentwood, working to combat loneliness.
And to help Hutton Community Centre’s overall kitchen refurbishment, the Axis Foundation donated £3,020. This bought a new commercial catering oven and extractor hood.
“On behalf of the Hutton Community Centre I would like to thank the Axis Foundation for their donation and support towards the cafe’s refurbishment. The oven and canopy you have kindly bought will make a huge difference to the services that we can now offer the local community and those visiting the area.
“All the feedback we have had during the COVID-19-enforced shutdown of the Centre from the people who would have normally used it has reinforced to us the importance of the HCC in combating loneliness and isolation in the local community” – Stella Miles, Cafe Supervisor
The refurbishment enables the low-cost café to offer a wider range of meals, provide hot meals during the school holidays for children who would normally have free school dinners and host a senior lunch club. The centre has extended the café opening hours too.
More about Axis in Brentford
Social housing landlord Brentwood Borough Council employs our parent company Axis Europe to keep 2,400 local homes safe and comfortable for residents. In accordance with our Core Value 6 – A community we contribute to will welcome and value us – and in addition to Axis’ regular CI activities in Brentwood, the Foundation was very pleased to support HCC and to help them combat loneliness in the local community. The Axis Foundation is proud to say we are ‘at the heart of the community’.
Helping vital community hub support those affected by poverty and homelessness
St Luke’s is a community hub based in Kennington in south London. It is managed by the West London Mission (WLM). The centre helps people affected by poverty and homelessness.
Their carpet in the common areas and stairwell here was very old and no longer fit for purpose. So when WLM approached the Axis Foundation for support to get a new one, we were delighted to help.
During the prep to lay the carpet, the floor underneath was found to be crumbling and in need of repair. And so the Axis Foundation’s donation of £2,243 repaired the floor and supplied and installed a new carpet for the benefit of service users and everyone who works at WLM St Luke’s.
“The folks at St Luke’s are absolutely thrilled beyond words to have a new carpet in the common area and stairwell.
“They are hugely grateful as no budget exists right now for such things. We badly needed it as it is a public space. It is now clean and welcoming, worthy of the staff and the service users – vulnerable folk in the local community.
“Hats off to Axis and the Axis Foundation. You and your team have made a huge difference” – Patrick O’Meara, Advisor to WLM
More about West London Mission and St Luke’s
WLM has been helping people facing poverty and homelessness since 1887. The link between homelessness and financial insecurity is as clear today as it was in the 19th century. People whose rent is in arrears are vulnerable to eviction and subsequent homelessness.
So, WLM St Luke’s aims to prevent homelessness by empowering people faced with financial and digital exclusion, low income and high levels of debt to feel confident, more in control of their finances and less isolated.
As they say: “Our focus is financial resilience and digital inclusion. We want our community to feel confident about managing their money and to gain the skills to get online.”
Enjoying thriving partnerships with local organisations and networks, St Luke’s offers computer and money management training as well as affordable desk space for local start-ups and affordable accommodation for low income workers.
Our continued support for Swale Gloves Amateur Boxing Club keeps youngsters off the streets and teaches them core values. The Axis Foundation has supported this Amateur Boxing Club since 2016. Our yearly donations, which total £33,000 in 2021, help cover the running costs of the club keeping it affordable and accessible.
Swale Gloves, based in Sittingbourne, Kent, works with 150 local children and teenagers teaching them the art of boxing. Boxing encourages respect and self-discipline whilst encouraging children to have fun away from the computer screen.
“The funds from the Axis Foundation give us financial freedom and enable us to keep subscription costs down. We’ve been able to keep it at the same price for the past six years. This means we can stay open which is the most important thing. This £5,000 is huge for an Amateur Boxing Club like us. It’s nice to have some like Axis who really supports us” – John Williams, Founder
Our donations have replaced broken sports equipment, contributed to transport costs and helped pay the rent of the hall. Now that’s what we like to call heavyweight support!
“We were allowed to re-open at the end of July 2020. Luckily most of our members returned. It has been difficult as we have to try and social distance within the gym and we are not allowed any sparring or padwork. All the kids have been really great and kept on supporting us.
“Once again we would like to thank the Axis Foundation for your continued support. It means so much as it gives us financial freedom where we can just concentrate in providing a great environment for the local kids within our community. Your support has been even more essential this year as we lost 3 months worth of income due to COVID” – John Williams, Founder
“Swale Gloves is truly grateful for the help you have given us over the past six years.
“We were closed from November 2020 and able to re-open mid-March 2021. Luckily for us most of our members have returned… Our membership remains high, we have 152 members, 33 of which are female.
“But we have had to purchase a lot more equipment, each member has access to their own gloves and ropes, to enable us to put on training sessions in a safe and social distanced way.
“We are back sparring now. Plus, we have also started a new referral scheme with a local specialist school. This has gone very well: we have 20 members referred to us from the school. All off these members have various issues and cannot be in mainstream school. We are helping to work with them to improve their self-confidence and social interaction skills” – John Williams, Founder
Case study – Fawwaz Akingbogun
Fawwaz Akingbogun is a real success story for Swale Gloves Amateur Boxing Club. He came here as a referral from his school in 2018. He was constantly in trouble and was in danger of being expelled. And he also started to get in trouble with the police.
“Swale Gloves has helped turn Fawwaz’s life around. He totally embraced his training. Within weeks his self-confidence grew and he began to see that he had a lot more to offer the world. Three years on Fawwaz has just completed his A Levels and achieved great results. Fawwaz comes from a very underprivileged background: his family struggles to afford the training sessions. And so we decided we would let Fawwaz in for free.
“He has repaid us in full by turning his life around and giving himself a great future.”
Fawwaz says: “I started getting into to trouble at school a few years ago, my teacher referred me to Swale Gloves Boxing Club, since I have been there my confidence and self-belief has improved so much. I managed to leave school with great A Levels and am now looking forward to going to University to study Business. But I will never forget the help the coaches at Swale Gloves have given me, I hope they continue for many years having a positive impact on young kids’ lives.”
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.
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.
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
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.
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.
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!
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.”
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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