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Grant funding helps Newcastle children grow new skills

Date published: 10 November 2023

Read time: 2 minutes

A boy and girl stood holding a carved pumpkin on either side of our Head of Mortgage Service Centre, Sue Scott.

The Children’s Foundation has used a £3,000 grant from the Newcastle Building Society Community Fund at the Community Foundation Tyne & Wear and Northumberland to help young people in Newcastle improve their physical and mental health.

The Children’s Foundation works to improve the health and wellbeing of the most vulnerable and marginalised children and young people across the North East.

Its Roots to Health project helps young people who have disengaged from traditional education gain new skills and greater self-confidence. Project participants will also work towards achieving a City & Guilds Level One Award in Practical Horticulture.

The project is based at the Coxlodge Allotments in Fawdon and is popular amongst local schools.  The grant will help cover the project’s essential costs, as well as help the Foundation take on a second allotment to meet growing demand for places.

Sean Soulsby, CEO of The Children’s Foundation, says: “Everyone knows how beneficial it is for your physical and mental well-being to spend time outside, and we’ve used this as the basis for helping young people who might need a different kind of environment to help them progress.

“The certificates they’re earning may well be the first achievement of this type that they’ve ever had, and we’ve already seen several examples of young people then going on to take up further studying and employment opportunities that they’d never have believed they could manage before they came to us.

“Being on the allotment also allows participants to come into contact with people from different generations, which helps their personal development, especially when they’re sharing their mutual enthusiasm for being out working on their plots in the open air.

“Newcastle Building Society shares our commitment to improving our communities and we’re really grateful for their support for this highly effective project.”

Download the press release (PDF, 119kB).

Image caption: Sue Scott, our Head of Mortgage Service Centre, with two project participants, Jack (left) and Darcey (right). 

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