Mayday Trust seeks 2-bedroom rented properties in Bedfordshire
Mayday Trust are urgently seeking 2-bedroom properties in Bedford, Dunstable, Leighton Buzzard, Luton and surrounding areas. The Trust supports people to take control of their own lives, to live independently and to use their talents to their full potential.
Mayday Trust will:
> Lease properties for 3 years
> Take responsibility for all management issues and internal repairs
> Provide full support and supervision to clients
> Guarantee rents even when the property is empty
> Return properties with vacant possession in a lettable condition
The project is backed by Bedford Council and funded from partner agencies with an interest in promoting community safety and social inclusion in Bedford and Central Bedfordshire. For more information please contact our Housing Team on 01788 568176 or firstname.lastname@example.org
UK's First Ever Learning Ability Foyer Opens With Olympic Spirit
The UK's first ever Learning Ability Foyer harnessing the limitless talents of young people with learning disabilities was launched on 1 May in Rugby. Representing the 'Olympic' aspirational spirit of Mayday Trust’s latest initiative, Paralympic table tennis champion Victoria Bromley, and Special Olympics athlete Greg Silvester joined the celebrations, along with Rugby MP Mark Pawsey and Rugby's Mayor Kathryn Lawrence.
CEO Pat McArdle said Mayday’s ‘vision had become a reality' with the launch of the foyer championing the goals and potential of people with learning disabilities.
Mayday joins a worldwide revolution focusing on aspirations not needs, according to Colin Falconer, Director of Innovation at the Foyer Federation, Mayday's partner. “It’s our Olympic movement of heart and mind that celebrates the talents of young people,” he said.
Special Olympics board member, coach and athlete Greg Silvester said: It's wonderful to see so many young people overcoming barriers and achieving so many things in their lives. If I can do it, you can too," he told the audience of more than 100.
Mayday is building on its research to offer effective life coaching and career guidance that enables young people to grow into who they want to be through a host of life-changing opportunities, including employment. Seventy-five percent of Mayday’s learning ability clients are either in volunteer or paid work.
"Mayday is a force for change. It's turning around services by inspiring and enabling," said Chris Lewington, Warwickshire County Council's Head of Strategic Planning.
The UK's first learning ability foyer provides an alternative to residential schooling. Designed for all levels of learning disabilities, including Aspergers Syndrome and those living with an Autistic Spectrum condition, the foyer offers young people maximum choice and control over their lives with activities including a job café, drama sessions, the latest social media skills, and a speak out club.
Along with activity demonstrations, the launch at Mayday's new central office included an exhibition table tennis match by Victoria Bromley.
• Exhibition match by 2012 Paralympic Table Tennis Player Victoria Bromley
• Special Olympics GB Athlete, and Board Member, Greg Silvester talking about his journey
• Interactive workshop demonstrations and an introduction to career guidance and advice service
For more information about this launch, and to request photographs from the event, please contact Lisa Carroll, Marketing & Communications Manager on 01788 534961 or email@example.com
A short film, introducing the Mayday Foyer was also premiered at the launch. It can be viewed here
Mayday Launches UK's First Learning Ability Foyer
Mayday Trust is proud to announce that, on 1 May 2013, we will be launching the UK's first ever Learning Ability Foyer offering a host of life-changing opportunities -- including employment -- for young people with learning. Paralympic table tennis champion Victoria Bromley and Special Olympics athlete and board member Greg Silvester are joining the celebrations along with Rugby MP Mark Pawsey.
"Under the new banner of learning ability, Mayday Trust is leading the way with our focus on talents and strengths, rather than needs and disabilities," says Mayday's CEO Pat McArdle. "We have invited our Olympians here because we are using exactly the same model to achieve aspirations, with no limit on goals and potential."
Mayday is building on its research to offer effective life coaching and career guidance that enables young people to grow into who they want to be. Day activities at the UK's first learning disability foyer encourage young people to exercise maximum choice and control over their lives. Working with The Foyer Federation, the UK's first learning ability foyer provides an alternative choice to residential schooling. Designed for all levels of learning disabilities, including Aspergers Syndrome and those living with an Autistic Spectrum condition, the foyer offers day activities including the a job café, voice and drama sessions, the latest social media skills, and a culture club.
Highlights of the launch event at 11 am at 10 Webb Ellis Park, Woodside Business Park, Rugby, CV21 2NP include:
• Exhibition match by 2012 Paralympic Table Tennis Player Victoria Bromley
• Special Olympics GB Athlete, and Board Member, Greg Silvester talking about his journey
• Interactive workshop demonstrations and an introduction to career guidance and advice service
For more information and to rsvp please contact Lisa Carroll, Marketing & Communications Manager on 01788 534961 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Mayday Trust achieves Level 2 Investor in Diversity status
Mayday Trust is pleased to announce that, following a recent assessment of our services, we have been awarded Level 2 Investor in Diversity status. Assessors from the National Centre for Diversity met with clients, staff and stakeholders as well as reviewing a range of internal and external material.
Following the assessment, Advisor Joan Martin reported: "Mayday Trust has demonstrated, through their policies and procedures, their commitment to equality, diversity and inclusion (EDI). EDI is woven into their Mission Statement and Vision. Their commitment statement on equality states: "Embracing diversity and ensuring no one is treated unfairly in service use or employment". Their Aims and Philosophy states: "We believe in the values and dignity of every human being, and providing opportunities to aid the development of the people we support so they can lead lives that are satisfying, independent and so they reach their full potential".
Pat McArdle, Chief Executive, commented: "Achieving the Level 2 award demonstrates the real commitment and passion that Mayday has to its employees, clients and all those who use its services. This approach ensures the creation and promotion of opportunity, fairness, and access of services. Working together we have started to shape a best practice culture which embraces diversity and individual assets".
2011/12 Annual Report showcases exciting changes to the charity
2011/12 has been a turning point for Mayday Trust. Throughout the course of the year we have started to introduce the radical changes required to ensure that we are ready for the tough times ahead.
We have been reviewing how we change lives and, through a great deal of research, how the Mayday of the future can really make a difference to communities, to young people and to families.
To find out what we've all been up to, please click here to view the report.
Work experience is recipe to success for Kelsey
Finding a route into the workplace can be a daunting prospect for many of us. For Kelsey, a client at Mayday House in Rugby, a mixture of support and mentoring has helped her find paid employment at last.
Kelsey, who has a learning disability, had been volunteering at a local charity shop for some time. She was keen to find paid employment so her key-worker helped her find out more about the Warwickshire Employment Support Team. WEST, a programme run by Warwickshire County Council, supports local adults with learning disabilities into employment through job searching, coaching and on-going support.
WEST approached Rugby High School, who kindly offered Kelsey a work experience placement working with the staff in the school canteen. Over the course of 6 weeks, Kelsey was supported by the school’s kitchen staff, including Head Chef, Alan Pickles.
Alan said: “Kelsey coped really well in a busy and potentially hazardous place of work. She seemed to enjoy the opportunity and made a great contribution. Kelsey learned practical tasks such as cleaning up and washing pots using commercial equipment, developed her customer service skills on the serving counter and more general skills such as time-management and workplace conduct.”
Since completing the work placement, Kelsey has gone on to find paid employment working for County Cleaning Services, which she is really enjoying. Kelsey is sure that the confidence and skills she learned during her time at Rugby High School has contributed to her success in her new job and Head Chef, Alan Pickles, has said he is keen to take on another work placement.
Cllr Izzi Seccombe, Warwickshire County Council’s Portfolio Holder for Adult Social Care, said: “Kelsey has proved that even in times of economic hardship, people with learning disabilities can work and make valuable contributions to society whilst also improving their own lives and increasing their independence."
Pat McArdle, Mayday Trust CEO, added: “At Mayday we focus on people’s ability, what they can achieve not what they cannot. Finding a job that she enjoyed was a big goal for Kelsey. We are delighted to have helped her achieve this.”
Photograph used with kind permission from Warwickshire County Council newsteam.
Work on Holman House, Mayday Trust's new Bedford development, is progressing
The property is being transformed from a Day Nursery into a specially designed support service for local people experiening Mental Health related issues. The service will provide 19 self-contained flats as well as communal areas.
The new site will replace Mayday's existing Bedford service, currently operating from Ashburnham Road, Bedford. Once they arrived on site, builders set to work stripping out the existing fittings and clearing the site. All internal walls have now been installed together with new boilers, pipeworks and electrics.
Builders are now starting to put in all kitchens and bathrooms throughout the site. Once this work is complete, the building will be painted, carpeted, and furnished.
Expansion Underway at Holman House
We are investing £1.3 million in the re-development of their Holman House site in Bedford with other developments in the pipe-line. CEO Pat McArdle: “This is no ordinary development. We view our role as not just simply providing accommodation for those that need it but building futures and changing lives. It’s such an exciting time for Mayday Trust.”
This week we saw site to contractors, V E Parrott, move onto the site to begin work on the 19 flat complex due to complete in May/June 2013
Mayday Trust have been developing Holman House on St Andrews Road, Bedford as a replacement to our Ashburnham Road scheme after planning permission was granted at the start of this year.
A public meeting will take place this evening [Tuesday 4th September] in the Howard Rooms at the Bedford Corn Exchange tomorrow between 6:30pm and 8pm.
Mayday Trust Director, David Cusack, said: "The purpose of the evening is to provide as much information as possible about our plans for Holman House. The local community have always been important to the Trust and we welcome anyone to come along and hear about our plans.
It's very much a two-way process though and we'll be providing local residents with the opportunity to directly ask us any questions they may have about this project, or the Trust as a whole and the support we provide for vulnerable adults in the region.
"We are investing in this site so as to ensure the needs of the people we support and vulnerable adults in the region enjoy superior support. The charity will provide specialised support, accommodation and life-skills training for vulnerable adults at the site.
Mayday CEO, Pat McArdle said: "The fact that we continue to expand and invest in people in this difficult economic climate is indicative of the commitment and progress Mayday Trust are providing in the social care and housing sector. We're all very excited about our latest site in Bedford."
Welcome to Mayday trust Park - the home of football
Bath City F.C renamed their Twerton Park ground to Mayday Trust Park yesterday after Mayday Chairman, Jim Arnold, remarkably won the right to change the name in a raffle earlier this year: "I just couldn't believe it," said Jim, "I've followed Bath City since I was a boy so to get the chance to rename their ground has been a thrill."
Bath manager Adie Britton and the team got the newly named ground off to a winning start in their first home league game of the season with a thrilling hat-trick as Bath romped to a 3-1 win.
Bath Chairwoman Manda Rigby is hoping the change of name will herald a new chapter in the club's history explaining: "We've made some exciting signings over the summer and the team are looking forward to running out in the first competitive game at Mayday Trust Park.
"We're especially pleased to be working with such a worthwhile charity that supports so many people."
Mayday Director Anna Gillespie shares Manda's outlook: "Mayday are expanding all the time and it's great to be working with a club that share our enthusiasm to strive forward. I'm sure that the united work of club and charity can herald huge positivity that can only help promote the work we do and hopefully see Bath City promoted to the next level."
Mayday CEO Pat McArdle enthused: "Sport is so inclusive as the nation has been witnessing with the Olympics and the build up to the Paralympics. Mayday have been growing rapidly this year and our relationship with Manda Rigby and Bath City can only serve to further that. We're already enjoying working with the club and I'm sure the season ahead will bring exciting opportunities for both of us."
Those of you lucky enough to attend the recent 2012 Varah & Higgins Awards will have already see this moving portrayal of how homelessness played a part in the lives of some our clients.
For those of you yet to see Mayday's latest video, or for those wanting to see again the support Mayday give people to change their lives around, click here.
Client recognition awards are a huge success
The awards spotlight was on Mayday recently when many of the people we support were recognised in the 2012 Varah & Higgins Awards. This year's long established client recognition awards, took place in a ceremony at The Morgan rooms in Rugby College.
A total eleven clients received awards - nine of those taking the form of financial awards that will benefit their future work or education prospects with the coveted 'Shining Light Award' being presented by MP Mark Pawsey.
The awards take the form of practical, financial assistance and this year benefited a range of successful submissions, from helping a client to fund his ambitions to be a lifeguard, through to aiding one young lady to starting her own crafts business.
Two Outstanding Achievements Awards of two clients were made to mark the significant progress towards independent living, supported by the Mayday learning disability team.
The ceremony was attended by schemes throughout the Mayday region, other charities, politicians, Mayor of Rugby - Kathryn Laurence, and many key stakeholders and friends of the Trust.
The assembled crowd were also treated to a wonderful and witty live performance from drama group Leading Players that included some of Mayday Trust's clients and was a rip-roaring success that thrilled everyone present, followed by a moving film by Barry Fitzgerald about the help some of our homeless clients have received from Mayday and the progress they have made .
Mayday Director, Anna Gillespie, was left overwhelmed by the ceremony declaring: "Everything went amazingly...100 percent exceeded expectations" and CEO Pat McArdle declaring: "It was fantastic."
The awards were the second big event for Mayday in little over a month, following on from the successful launch of our learning disability day programme, Learning Ability, as Mayday continues to grow from strength to strength.
Mayday on BBC One
Did you see Mayday Trust on the BBC? Our friends at the Beeb were highlighting the great work we do to help the people we support gain entry into work an training.
Click here to see our charmingly wobbly home recording of the feature.
Mayday CEO writes in the Guardian
Regular visitors to our Mayday News page will know that we recently announced how we’ve been bucking the struggling employment statistics by helping the people we support into the work place – some for the first time.
Well its no longer just us shouting about it - our achievements are being recognised throughout the Mayday region. Mayday’s success in helping people into work will be featured on BBC radio and television this Wednesday.
Listeners to BBC Coventry and Warwickshire Wednesday morning will have heard Mayday CEO, Pat McArdle, and a former client speaking on the breakfast show discussing how Mayday help more and more people into jobs, training and education.
BBC Midlands Today have been filming Mayday clients, former clients and staff to feature on the evening news. We'll post here as soon as we know which day it will air.
And it doesn’t stop there - a little bird tells us there will be more Mayday Media news soon so keep checking back.
We're all in a lather after we scored a big win away from home yesterday
The Chairman of our Board of Trustees, Jim Arnold, secured a big win for us when he entered into a ‘Name the Stadium’ competition at Bath City FC.
Bath City normally play at Twerton Park but from next season it will be re-named Mayday Trust Park after Jim bought a raffle ticket with 4 game tickets for the reduced price of £50 and came up trumps.
The last minute stunner of a result came after Jim pulled the late winner and decided to have a shot at the competition and go to the Easter Monday game.
Jim enthused: “It was a real surprise to get the call from Bath City right after the draw, but we are looking forward to working with the club very much. We are both community based organisations and will make great partners.”
The charity provide a host of support including helping young people leaving care, people with moderate learning difficulties and recurring mental health problems, ex-offenders, people made homeless through family breakdown and victims of abuse.
Mayday CEO, Pat McArdle, is equally excited:
“This is a fantastic result for Mayday Trust. We’ve already received a shower of congratulations from Mayday supporters and Bath City fans alike.
“Mayday are expanding all the time but we never thought we’d be pitching for a Football Club. We can’t wait to work in partnership with Bath City.”
“Jobs and training are out there.”
Despite recent employment figures being less than positive, it is not all doom and gloom for those seeking employment and training.
At Mayday Trust we’ve been bucking the struggling employment statistics by helping the people they support into the work place – some for the first time.
In the last year alone, Mayday have supported well over 200 people into either employment, training or voluntary work. 70 of those have entered into employment, with 93 into training and a further 52 clients building towards future careers through voluntary work in a variety of sectors. In addition to these are the many clients that we are supporting to become our next success stories into employment, education and training.
Mayday Director of Business Development, Anna Gillespie explains: “Mayday support a diverse range of people and it is important to us that we assist them in their route to employment and training in the best way for them as individuals.
“The support can take a variety of forms such as delivering community job clubs, helping build CVs, or providing access to online facilities. Many of the people we help into work are young people achieving their first start in the world of work.
“We have found that 9 out of 10 job opportunities involve some form of online application and access is key to helping our clients into work and training.
“There are jobs and training out there and we’re helping the people we support to not only find them but secure the positions.”
St Andrew’s Road development to be named “Holman House."
Mayday Trust have announced that their new development in Bedford, will be named “Holman House” in honour of trustee Chris Holman.
At their recent board meeting, Chairman Jim Arnold congratulated Chris on reaching his 70th birthday and in recognition of Chris’ significant contribution to the Trust the board then agreed that the St Andrew’s Road development be named in his honour.
Chris joined the Board in 2003 and is currently Mayday’s longest serving trustee. He was appointed as Chairman in 2005 – a position he retained for four years.
Speaking at the 2009 AGM he recalled: “When I joined the Board, recruitment of Trustees was less formally structured than it is today. No thought of asking potential trustees to complete an application form, or a skills audit. Heaven forbid.
“Trustees or members of staff recommended possible candidates. The Chairman contacted them and invited them in for a chat and if he liked the cut of their jib they were formally invited to join the Board.
“I learnt a lot in the following couple of years; all of which convinced me that I had made the right choice in becoming a Mayday Trustee”
In 2005 Chris was elected as Chair of Trustees coinciding with a number of key changes within the organisation. In 2006 the Trust lost several senior and long serving staff, not all in amicable circumstances. Chris stepped into the brink, acting as Executive Chairman for several months. Chris stepped down as Chairman in 2009 but has continued to serve the Trust as a board member.
Speaking after the St Andrew’s Road announcement he added: "I am deeply moved that Mayday will be naming this new and exciting development in my honour. Current and former staff & Trustees can feel justifiably proud of Mayday's achievements over the past 33 years and the opening of these new premises in Bedford will mark the start of a new chapter for the Trust."
New Director of Operations appointed to Mayday Trust
Mayday Trust is pleased to announce the appointment of Dave Cusack, our new Director of Operations. Dave’s arrival on 27 February marks the completion of our extended Senior Management Team.
Dave recently left Moseley and District Housing Association in Birmingham where he was CEO.
During this time he was responsible for developing and delivering a robust action plan to move operations forward. This took the association out of special measures and to a position of a ‘healthy’ Audit Commission rating. Under his guidance the association increased turnover from £6m to £7.4m during a 5 year period. This was achieved by: securing contracts to manage services for other providers; evaluating inherited poor business practices and streamlining services to become more cost effective.
Prior to this Dave held a senior position with Birmingham City Housing Authority.
Speaking about his appointment, Dave said: “I’m thrilled to have been appointed by Mayday and look forward to working with colleagues, individuals and stakeholders to improve the quality and range of services we provide.”
A fond farewell to Colin
Colin West, a Floating Project Worker for Mayday Trust is retiring today (Friday 10 Feb) after almost 17 years with the charity. Before joining the Floating Support Team Colin was Scheme Manager at Mayday’s specialist housing scheme in Bedford, supporting people with mental health needs.
Colin, joined the Trust in July 1995 and recalled how the week before he started work he injured his back on an adventure holiday: “My first week at Mayday was one of the most painful experiences of my life. I managed to drag myself into work but I was in agony all week. Thankfully things steadily improved after that!”
Colin reminisced: “I have so many great memories of my time at Mayday – too many to mention. One thing that I am particularly proud of is the after-care support we provided at Bedford. We continued to support people for the first few months after they left the scheme. It was great to see how individuals got on after they left Mayday.
“Many of them succeeded on their own and it was lovely to see them settle into their new homes. For those that struggled, we were able to help them overcome those early difficulties and through the transition into independence.”
Stuart Sullivan, Director of Housing said: “Colin has always been professional, highly knowledgeable, friendly, committed and an advocate for those he worked with. It has been a pleasure knowing and working with him. He has contributed a lot to the Trust over the years and has made a difference to many people’s lives of which he should be proud.”
Amanda Bruce, Floating Support Manager added: “Colin has worked with a considerable number of individuals in a variety of roles during his 17 years service, never too busy to listen or care. We all wish Colin a long and healthy retirement which I don’t doubt he will fill with equally rewarding challenges.”
Peter, from Mayday Trust’s Leighton Buzzard Scheme, has been supported by Colin over the past few months. He told us: “He looks much younger and fitter than me, I am surprised he is retiring.” Geraldine, also from Leighton Buzzard, added: “Now is the time for Colin to put himself first and do what he wants to do.”
Colin is planning a few weeks of ‘absolutely nothing’ before seeing where his retirement will take him.
Ashwood Court, Rugby, get pedalling thanks to HMP Onley
Mayday has received 6 refurbished bicycles from HMP Onley. The bikes, which have been refurbished through Onley’s Re-Cycle work training programme were donated to Mayday Trust’s Ashwood Court supported housing scheme in Rugby.
The bicycles will provide a much-needed means of transport for people looking to access voluntary and paid employment in the local area as well as an opportunity to improve their fitness and wellbeing.
Lesley Phillips, Senior Project Worker said: “Recently some people have been telling us about the problems they encounter getting to meetings, interviews and work opportunities – particularly in the more outlying areas of Rugby. Mayday provides creative and innovative opportunities by working in partnership with local agencies like HMP Onley. We’re delighted that Onley has been able to help us promote fitness and assist people get back into work."
Justyn Caie, Head of Learning & Skills at Onley commented: “HMP Onley is committed to working closely with our local community as well as national charities and third sector organisations. We were approached by the Mayday Trust and hope that the provision of the bikes will be of benefit to their clients.”
Clients at Ashwood Court already have a keen interest in keeping fit and regularly make use of the in-house fitness equipment. With the addition of bicycles the scheme will now be able to extend its fitness programme outdoors as well as increasing participants’ confidence and motivation. The group are now planning a Bike Club to incorporate planning “bike safaris” and bike maintenance. Stephen Medlicott and Callum McAusland are already looking forward to using the bikes. Stephen said: “It was very nice of Onley to donate these brill bikes, I am looking forward to using them on a bike ride and keeping fit, and to look for work opportunities”.
Callum added: “Its brilliant, I can ask staff for a bike to help me get a job either a Central Park or Crick, cant wait”.
Mayday Trust celebrates positive start for 2012. Planning Permission granted for new site in Bedford
Plans to convert a former independent nursery received unanimous support when they went before Bedford Borough Council’s Planning Committee recently.
The new development will involve the conversion of the former nursery into supported housing for local people experiencing mental health issues. The property will be redeveloped to a high standard, providing 19 self contained flats as well as communal living areas where people will be able to socialise and participate in organised activities run by staff.
Work is scheduled to commence in Spring of this year with completion predicted by Christmas 2012. When up and running, the proposed scheme will replace the Trust’s existing service operating from Ashburnham Road and Conduit Road, Bedford.
Pat McArdle, Chief Executive said: “This is fantastic news for Mayday Trust and a wonderful way to start the New Year. The development will offer a modern, and open environment from which we can continue the work we have undertaken in Bedford for 25 years The St Andrew’s Road property will set a new standard of accommodation for Mayday with the aspirations of those using the service at the forefront of the agenda.”
Cara Passfield, Scheme Manager said: “We have a proven track record of supporting adults with mental health needs in this community and are very excited about the move.”
Hazel, one of the people currently using the service, added: “This is brilliant news. it will enable us to have our own flats and our own space and prepare us for living independently again. It is nearer to mental health services and in a much nicer and quieter area.”
The plans were approved on 3 January under the proviso that a small amendment was made to one bedroom. Having submitted revised drawings the planning committee has today (13 January) given the formal go ahead for work to begin.