Tag Archives: charity

The YAC Bowling Night

FOR BLOGLast month, the YC team treated some Young Adult Carers aged 17-24 (YACs) to a night of bowling at the Longwell Green complex in Bristol. Luckily, there were just enough of us to squeeze into our minibus, which was donated to us by The Wheels Project a year ago. Steve (the Young Carers Officer) was our driver for the evening and ensured the journey there was almost as fun as the actual event!

At Longwell Green, we enjoyed a drink and a quick sit down before heading off to the lanes. We started bowling and within ten minutes Cherie had established that she was the strike queen getting two strikes in her first two turns. Steve and Joe were in fierce competition; as the only two males there they felt they had something to prove!

Continue reading The YAC Bowling Night

Our Fundraising Concert

The fabulous Jenny Peplow singers
The fabulous Jenny Peplow singers

A few weeks ago, the fabulous Jenny Peplow singers held a fundraising concert in Radstock for the Carers’ Centre. I got to attend as a spectator rather than a staff member, which meant I could relax as the volunteers did all the hard work! I also took my mum along, because all mums like a nice choir. We entered the venue to a sea of volunteers and thankfully, a room packed with eager audience members – some were carers that I recognised from my work at the Carers’ Centre which was lovely to see. Mum and I bought some raffle tickets and headed upstairs for a better view.

Soon, the choir came out, introduced by conductor Jenny Peplow. Dressed in black, the all-female choir looked so impressive, and when they started singing we all knew we were in for a fantastic evening. Covering our favourite pop and musical numbers in stunning three and four part harmonies, every voice of the 44-strong choir added something to the mix. My favourite song was a cover of ‘Jar of Hearts’ by Christina Perry, just because of the anger they managed to express while still sounding beautiful. However my mum started crying at “He Ain’t Heavy, He’s My Brother’ before they’d even started singing! Continue reading Our Fundraising Concert

Spring is in the Air

photo 1With the days are getting longer and coats getting left at home more often, it’s safe to say that spring is definitely in the air. This is great news for the Carers’ Centre – with our summer programme in the pipeline, we can start planning more and more breaks to take place in our beautiful garden, or outside in the rolling countryside of BANES.

Last spring saw our carers explore Bath, Bristol and beyond, as we held trips to Bristol Zoo, Ston Easton Park, Ammerdown and the Royal Crescent. We also held educational breaks, like our photography course at Bath City Farm and ‘Gardens Are Good For You’, which taught carers essential gardening techniques to help their gardens look fresh and bright for the summer. These breaks were well received and Jane (our senior wellbeing officer) is planning more fun activities as we speak.

Tomorrow our wonderful garden volunteers will meet, and hopefully enjoy their work more now that the rain is stopping – at least it was stopping when we wrote this blog post! On April 16th our carers will go foraging for plants to make delicious and nutritious soups and salads, and on Saturday, 7th May some adventurous carers will join Jane Harvey on a ramble through Chew Valley, in a beautiful walk that combines gorgeous scenery with some light exercise and is great for carers of all ages.

Aside from all of this, there’s no better way to celebrate the darling buds of May than joining us for our Spring Craft Fayre, also taking place on Saturday, 7th May. The Fayre is from 10am-2pm and will be held at our Woodlands centre on the Lower Bristol Road. After two successful Craft Fayres in 2015, we’re hoping Spring 2016 will be even bigger and better. There’ll be live entertainment, children’s activities and some homemade refreshments, so please join us to have fun and raise some money for the Carers’ Centre!

Read more about our Spring fayre on our website: https://www.banescarerscentre.org.uk/help-us-fundraise/may-craft-fayre/

BathHalf 2016

Our staff cheering on runners at the BathHalf on Sunday
Our staff cheering on runners at the BathHalf on Sunday

Last Sunday, the BathHalf celebrated its 35th year, with an astounding 13,000 people running to raise money for good causes or beat their personal best. The runners had perfect weather for Bath’s biggest annual event; the 13.1 mile course around the beautiful streets of this gorgeous city.

Last year the Half raised over £2.1million for charity, and this year we were honoured to be one of the organisations people could raise money for. This year, nine locations around the track were chosen to be ‘Battle of the Bands’ bases, and we were lucky enough to be chosen to host the ‘Edsel Furys’, a 60s garage and surf-style rock ‘n’ roll band whose infectious sound had runners smiling as they went past.

Our Deputy CEO and former BathHalf runner David said that when he ran, the Lower Bristol Road was a quiet and almost dispiriting part of the track. Thankfully we were able to change that this year, and with the ‘Edsel Furys’ in tow, we made sure the Carers’ Centre was a hub of noise and positivity for every runner involved! With signs, sweets and Carers’ Centre t-shirts, we made as much noise as we could for all the runners as they went past. We’re so grateful to every runner who took part – you are all so incredible and we thank you so much for your amazing dedication!

We want to say a special thank you to Taryn, Emma, Phil, Chris, Dan, Rich, Pete, and Norman, who ran to raise money for our centre. You’re all brilliant and we can’t wait to find out how much money you raised for carers in BANES!

The date for 2017’s BathHalf has already been set as the 12th of March – if you’ve been inspired by this year’s runners and want to take part next year, why not run and raise money for the Carers’ Centre? We’d love to see you there! Contact us on info@banescarerscentre.org.uk / 01761 431388 or @carerscentre1 to join our 2017 team.

My Young Carer Story

MeeeeeeeeeLast Thursday was National Young Carers Awareness Day, which aimed to raise awareness of our amazing YCs and the unseen work they do every day. Last week we highlighted Joe Lomax, one of our fab YCs. This week, our blog takes a more personal tone, because I want to tell you my story.

My brother is funny and has the biggest smile of anyone I know. He is also severely autistic and has very limited communication skills. When I was younger, this was really hard for me, as I didn’t understand his disability or why he acts the way he does. Additionally, no one at school was in my situation, so I often felt lonely, and like I couldn’t relate to anyone.

Luckily, an amazing Young Carers service really helped me out. I was referred there by a social worker who felt I needed to be with children in a similar situation to myself. She was absolutely right, and that group helped me get out of the house and meet other children in tough circumstances.

I’ve worked at the CC for about seven months and I love my role. I run the YC Twitter account, organise this blog, and I’m currently researching support groups. However, my favourite thing about working here is helping kids with difficult home lives, just like I had at that age. Even simple things like taking them to the cinema or running an art club gives them the chance to relax and have fun. It’s always so great to put a smile on their faces and help a charity like the one that kept me going when I was their age.

Saltford Santa Dash 2015

Our adult Santas at the starting line
Our adult Santas at the starting line

It was a sea of red and white in Saltford this weekend as the annual Saltford Santa Dash took place. This year saw a huge host of Santas and mini-Santas run a 5 mile fun-run through the beautiful lanes of Saltford, all to raise money for charity. This year, the proceeds were halved between Time2Share and the Carers’ Centre.

The mini-Santas set off at 10am after a wonderful welcome from Alex Lovell, presenter of BBC Points West. It was adorable and even heart-warming to see so many young people running to support charities which help other children going through a difficult time. Running a mile in December isn’t easy for anyone but the children were amazing and there were a lot of proud parents cheering them on all the way!

Next was the adult Santa race which saw a host of Santas run a figure-of-eight course through the picturesque lanes of Saltford.  There was such a great atmosphere at the event, with many Santas laughing the whole way. This was helped by the fantastic marshals and helpers, who were on hand with hot drinks, light refreshments and a smile for everyone taking part.

With the money raised from the Dash, the Carers’ Centre can continue providing support, advice and breaks for unpaid carers in the BANES area. We support many carers from Saltford, so the support is even closer to home than many events. We are extremely thankful that organisers of the Dash chose to support our charity and we would like to thank every single Santa that ran – you’re amazing!

Autumn Craft Fayre 2015

Some of the adorable items featured at this weekend's Craft Fayre
Some of the adorable items featured at this weekend’s Craft Fayre

Our Woodlands centre in Bath was the place to be this weekend as we held our Autumn Craft Fayre. Despite the horrendous weather we had a good turnout, with many visitors enjoying our Carers Centre garden, eating lovely homemade cakes and buying artisan arts and crafts. The gifts on offer ranged from homemade chutneys and jams to hand-crafted cards, knitted jumpers to painted glass, and there were even some pet reindeers made out of wood!

We also had our own stall, selling beautiful arts and crafts our carers have completed on breaks and activities with us. These included our Christmas cards, which featured designs created by our Carers For Each Other group. We even held a raffle, giving out some fabulous prizes which put a smile on everyone’s face. Gifts included a festive cookbook, a meal for two at The Porter, and a voucher for Hotel Chocolat – Thanks to all businesses that provided these wonderful prizes.

The Craft Fayre helped to raise over £500, a fantastic result we are all thrilled with!! This means we can continue to support carers and give them the breaks they deserve. The Fayre was particularly special as it was held in our now purchased Woodlands building! We are so proud to have achieved this as it means we can secure a permanent place for carers. All in all it was a great success; thank you to all the staff, businesses and volunteers for taking part.

Out of the Comfort Zone

One of our brave Skydivers is our own Marketing & Communications Coordinator, Emma Tucker. She shares her thoughts on signing up for something she never thought she would do!

I’m really not an adrenaline junkie. I’m a quiet person who likes to read, curl up in bed or by the fire, walk my dog and eat delicious food. That would seriously be my ideal day. But a couple of months ago I decided I was going to do a sponsored skydive for the charity I work for – the Carers’ Centre.

I had considered the skydive the morning we started to look into it as a fundraising initiative, and already discarded the idea by lunch. But a couple of months later as the excitement began to build and we had a few willing participants, I suddenly decided I was just going to DO IT.

There was a couple of weeks where I had said I was going to do it but hadn’t taken any action – I hadn’t signed the forms or purchased my insurance (eek!!) and there was a moment there when I thought I was all talk and no action. But when have I been one to say no to new experiences?! Introverted as I may be, I went to France for four weeks at sixteen with my school, got a black belt in Karate by grade 12 and lived in the States for a year at nineteen. I think I can do a little parachute jump from 10,000 feet.

Continue reading Out of the Comfort Zone