Young Man at the Fluence Foundation being helped with his communication skillsDonations

Fluence Foundation

Literacy skills lead to education and employment

Fluence Foundation helps vulnerable adults and young people, including the homeless and ex-offenders, improve communication skills leading to education and employment.

The Axis Foundation’s donation of £2,400 will purchase the licence for the Communicate software to help 30 more people gain literacy and communication skills so they can receive formal education and gain employment.

“On behalf of the Fluence Foundation, I would like to thank Axis Foundation for their kind donation to our project. With your help we will be able to help the homeless clients of Birmingham Crisis by diagnosing any literacy difficulties they might have and provide practical support to overcome these difficulties. Doing so will ensure they have the skills needed to access the other services Crisis provide and stand a better chance of being able to improve their situation” – Paul Bruton, Project Co-Ordinator

More About Fluence Foundation

Those without basic communication (reading, writing, talking) skills become vulnerable, dependent and isolated, finding it hard to connect with others, to engage with society. They are often unable to access employment, training or education to improve their lot. West Midlands-based Fluence runs support sessions using a catch-up, one-to-one intervention called Communicate. They report a significant beneficial impact on the confidence and literacy/communication skills of the people they help in a very short time.

Communicate diagnoses areas of weakness, then focuses on teaching high-frequency language and key grammar rules. Its learning structure uses repetition and achievable successes to ensure the learner grows in confidence and masters the language. Training in speaking clearly and making eye contact, answering a phone or being interviewed is also given – all are examples of communication that, when mastered, lead ultimately to independence.

The Fluence Foundation has successfully run three projects: two helped ex-offenders towards employment; the third gave unemployed adults the literacy skills to access training and employment.




Smiling members of the Arts For All groupDisability

Arts For All

Vulnerable adults benefit from arts learning holiday

Arts for All helps vulnerable adults with learning disabilities. At the Shoreditch-based charity, friendship and acceptance replace isolation and low self-esteem. Members build up their confidence through working creatively with peers. Here they can learn arts and crafts including drawing, textiles, jewellery and silver-smithing.

Our donation of £5,000 (2018) funded a holiday to Devon. On the holiday, teachers delivered arts and crafts sessions. Members all took every opportunity for activity (swimming, go-karting, golf, badminton, Bollywood dancing, archery, snooker) discarding their sedentary lives with enthusiasm. They all brought home a new skill or hobby once the holiday was over – the best memento!

 “Each person felt they had learned new things that they never thought that they could do. They have come back to London armed with expertise and walking taller. They all know that they did really well and it has made them really feel that they have something positive to offer. All in all this was the most amazing, brilliant adventure. They grew in confidence, learned new creative techniques to bring back to the group in London and they were active all week… Above all the most important thing to me is how HAPPY they all were. They stepped away from their often difficult, isolated and mundane lives into a holiday of friends, fun and a lot of laughter!!

“We are so grateful for this funding from The Axis Foundation who have made this holiday possible. Once again, thank you so much” – Caroline Barlow, Manager and Founder

Minibus donated to BARN charity in Redditch for the elderly and disabledCommunity


Transport for vulnerable and isolated local people

BARN (Bromsgrove and Redditch Network) is a volunteer network in Redditch. Their free-to-ride minibus (BURT) provides mobility for those with dementia, the elderly and disabled – as well as their carers,

This vital service was under threat as BARN’s minibus was old and unreliable. Its constant need for repair was causing cancellations and preventing BARN from expanding the service.

So, the Axis Foundation’s donation of £5,000 will go towards the purchase of a new minibus so that BURT can continue to help vulnerable and isolated people.

“This has made such a huge difference to so many people. BURT is more than just a transportation service for the elderly and disabled.For our users we’re a lifeline, and it is heart-breaking when we have to cancel journeys because our current minibus had broken down again.

“The feedback from the passengers about the new minibus you helped us buy has been really good. The new minibus has been designed to have a lower floor, making it easier for people to get on; the tail lift is smooth and modern, making access that way a safer and more pleasant experience; it is clean and smart, making passenger journeys more comfortable; it has a separate heater in the passenger section just in time for these chilly winter mornings.

“”We really appreciate the contribution you made to purchasing the minibus, and it is already making a difference to our passengers. We can’t thank the Axis Foundation enough for this” – Gary Roskell, CEO

More about BARN

BARN’s transportation service for the elderly and disabled helps people get to dementia clubs, fitness classes for people with disabilities and life-after-stroke sessions. Without the service, many would no longer have the means to visit friends, attend health appointments or even go shopping. (BURT) makes about 6,000 journeys a year providing a lifeline of support.


Community Event at Culpeper Community Garden in IslingtonCommunity

Culpeper Community Garden

Local community gardening project is Eden in Islington

Islington’s award-winning Culpeper Community Garden works closely with local organisations who support vulnerable people. Many schools come here to learn about nature. There is a wealth of activities and workshops for adults and thousands of members of the public also visit this haven every year.

The RHS has warmly praised Culpeper, a registered charity, in their London in Bloom competition. “Culpeper is an outstanding example of community gardening in the city… It’s social and therapeutic horticultural at its best.”

“The money from the Axis Foundation, £2,000, will be used for environmental education and gardening sessions with groups and local schools. I am so happy that the Foundation’s grant can further support our projects at Culpeper.

“Culpeper’s a wonderful green community centre in the heart of London where people from every background, advantage and disadvantage can relax and work together in a beautiful green space. I call it a ‘little garden of Eden’. The garden has been a source of pleasure and inspiration to me for over 30 years” – Margaret Pitt, Trustee

More about Culpeper

Culpeper Community Garden is close to several large housing estates in Islington and is run by locals on organic and sustainable principles. It is one of London’s oldest city parks / community gardening in the city projects and land here comprises 46 plots for local residents and groups, communal areas (including a pond, wildlife area, lawn and rose pergola), a community building and a tea hut for members.

Supporting vulnerable people

Culpeper supports the Elfrida Society, the Stuart Low Trust, Room to Heal and Islington Mind. These local organisations help vulnerable people including those with learning difficulties and mental health issues as well as isolated people and asylum seekers. Each organisation has a weekly session at Culpeper and a plot of their own to cultivate.

“This garden is like paradise for us. When I came here, I was very depressed and without hope. It was winter and now for me it’s spring,” – Garden Volunteer

Members of the Choir With No Name sing togetherCommunity

Choir With No Name

Our notes help Community Choir support homeless and socially marginalised through singing

The Choir with No Name (CWNN) is a community choir for people affected by homelessness and marginalisation. CWNN’s vision is that all people have a place they belong. A place where anyone can come and sing their hearts out. Their mission is to enable as many homeless and marginalised people as possible to beat loneliness and build their confidence and skills through singing. Communal singing is proven to be hugely beneficial for both physical and mental health. So, they were delighted to receive a sum of £5,000 from the Axis Foundation.

“We are thrilled to have the support of Axis Foundation. Our London choir is a positive and non-judgmental space where the most isolated members of the community can build up a network of support, grow in confidence, sing away their worries and get themselves back on their feet.”

“The Axis Foundation’s generosity means that we will be able to continue to run rehearsals in central London all year round, reaching more people affected by homelessness in the city and introducing them to the multiple benefits of singing together.”

“We are extremely grateful, thank you!” – Rachel Clare, Fundraising and Communications Manager

More About our Grant

The Axis Foundation’s £5,000 grant will support the music delivery costs of the London choir, including the Choir Director and rehearsal venue hire fees. Support for these costs in 2018/19 will enable them to offer community choir rehearsals 48 weeks of the year, create 12 gig opportunities for members at inspirational venues across the capital and host 12 outreach singing workshops for people at risk of homelessness and marginalised community members.  The community choir project aims to engage with 230 individuals through their rehearsals and outreach programme throughout the year.

More About The Choir with No Name

The Choir with No Name London is based in the borough of Camden but is open to all boroughs in London. They also run choirs in Birmingham and Liverpool, and launched a brand new choir in Brighton in August 2018. In 2017/18 they worked with 764 marginalised adults across all choirs (278 via rehearsals and 486 via outreach singing workshops). CWNN rehearsals are followed by a hot meal and then the opportunity to socialise. Volunteers do the cooking and provide pastoral care and practical support too.



Attendees to Communicate2U stand together for a picture.Disability


Training provides improved communication for people with learning disabilities

By advising potential employers and care providers on how best to communicate with people with learning difficulties, Communicate2U helps people with learning disabilities who may face reduced educational and employment opportunities – ultimately, a pathway to poor mental health and poverty. A C2U Communications Expert is person with a learning disability or a vulnerable communicator, who is trained to teach others about communication.

The Axis Foundation’s Donation of £2,000 will go towards purchasing vital equipment including laptops, cameras, a projector and a screen as well as a printer, USB sticks and a mobile phone. This will enable Communicate2U to provide more effective training and as a result, better communication for people with learning disabilities.

“We wanted to say a massive thank you for giving us money to buy equipment. It was great going shopping with so much money and we got the chance to choose what we wanted. With all the equipment, it means we are set up to prepare presentations, use the projector, and screen for use as a teaching aid. We can’t wait to get started. Thank you so much”-  all the students and interns at Communicate 2U

More About Communicate2U

At Communicate 2U there are teams of Occupational Therapy (OT) staff and Communication Experts (a person with a learning disability or other vulnerable communicator, trained to teach others about communication). They have three clear aims:

  • To empower staff in health, social care, education and business with the skills and confidence to communicate with vulnerable people
  • To change the attitudes of employers towards employing a person with additional needs
  • To provide pathways for vulnerable people into paid employment

Communicate2U has recently audited written and non-verbal communication at Birmingham Children’s Hospital and advised on designing a sensory-friendly mental health drop-in centre.

Smiling residents of Bentilee VolunteersCommunity

Bentilee Volunteers

Social club for adults with learning disabilities

Bentilee Volunteers is a charity which provides social activities and volunteering to children, the elderly and disadvantaged people within the local community.

£2,500 from the Axis Foundation will go towards their Rainbow Club, a social club for adults with learning disabilities, which provides a safe social haven for members to make new friends and take part in creative and interactive activities like drama, music, crafts and dancing, as well as parties and games. In addition, their theatre trips and excursions take members to exciting and stimulating places.

“Bentilee Volunteers were thrilled to receive a donation from the Axis Foundation. The funding will help our Rainbow Project to continue and grow, supporting the good work of our committed staff and volunteers. Above all, it will ensure that this much needed club remains available to local vulnerable people” – Gill McGovern, Funding Development Worker

More About Bentilee Volunteers

Bentilee Volunteers consult with the residents of Bentilee, encouraging them to identify and address the needs of their local area. As a result, they have set up a range of initiatives, helping to raise the quality of life for vulnerable people within the community.  Projects include:

  • The Furniture Shed and Charity Shop (donations and re-sales
  • Youthlink (a club for young people between the ages of 11 and 19)
  • Senior Clubs (luncheon clubs with transport, activities and outings for older members of the community)
  • The Community IT Suite (offering computer training and assistance into employment, training and volunteering opportunities)



Homeless man being served food in The Passage homeless kitchen.Community

The Passage

Help for the homeless in Westminster

The Passage is a day-care centre that operates for the homeless, providing food and shelter, as well as two hostels for vulnerable rough sleepers at night. The centre is used by up to 200 people a day for both men and women, offering basic care, advice, health care re- homing help, education, training and hostel accommodation.

Westminster has the highest concentration of homeless rough sleepers in the country. There is a pressing need to both provide care for them with basic services and to support them to rebuild their lives. The Passage strives to achieve this by helping them access benefits they may be entitled to and by offering educational support so that they can find accommodation and maybe a way of income.

The Axis Foundation has aided The Passage in continuing their support for people in the Westminster area by donating £5,000. This donation will look to furnish the bedrooms in their main hostel and help fund new bedding, towels, table lamps, clock radios and cleaning kits so residents have a clean atmosphere and a pleasant feel to the place.

Over the years a number of Axis people have used their 1 volunteering day a year to volunteer at the passage to help out the homeless in the areas we work.  We have also donated painting equipment with staff volunteering their time to refurbish rooms and several corridors at the Passage Homeless Shelter.

In one year it took £3.9m to run their 48 bed shelter, the day centre and provide support including; mental health care, alcohol and drug rehabilitation, shelter for older homeless people, education and training for employment.

Axis recognised the importance of the Passage’s work and shares the centre’s ethos of providing a hand up rather than a hand out, something Axis employs within the social housing communities in which they work.


Man teaching life skills to disadvantaged children at Sport 4 LifeDonations

Sport 4 Life

Tackling youth unemployment

Sport 4 Life is a charity that helps people aged 12 to 29 to build better futures through their sports-themed personal development programmes. They aim to tackle youth unemployment at the source by providing mentoring, structured sports sessions and accredited training to marginalised young people.

Their ‘Be Positive’ programme targets 13 to 25-year olds who have struggled at school, endured difficult home lives, or developed behavioural issues. It helps them to build confidence, develop life skills and gain qualifications through structured educational and development activities.

The Axis Foundation has donated £2,000 towards the ‘Be Positive’ programme, directly benefitting the 90 disadvantaged young males who are enrolled on the course. Furthermore, the wider community will benefit from increased youth engagement and subsequent reductions in crime and anti-social behaviour.

Educational workshops at Sports 4 Life focus on key inner-city issues such as alcohol, drugs, sexual health and knife crime. They are designed to improve the behaviour, attitudes, and self-esteem of the youngsters involved. The Axis Foundation’s donation will also purchase much needed educational resources which the charity previously had no funding for.

“Sport 4 Life are incredibly grateful for the generous donation received from the Axis Foundation. This financial support will enable us to provide sports-themed educational programmes to some of the UK’s most disadvantaged young people, and to support them to gain qualifications, transform their behaviour, and ultimately build themselves a better future. We look forward to using the donation to further our charitable work and help disadvantaged young people” – James Forrest, Manager 

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