I’m doing a zip wire challenge of Snowdonia on Wednesday – please read a little bit more about this charity if you’ve 5 minutes!
As you know since returning from my fellowship travels I have been involved in a variety of community work. I’ve been inspired by the research in the States and Brazil, and as such am seeing some really interesting work coming up through grassroots organisations here in Leeds.
I’ve been lucky enough to spend time exploring the work of the Ciaran Bingham Foundation Trust here in South Leeds. I have got to know the different volunteers by attending some of the lunch clubs they do, and am now involved in this fundraising event. I am also very excited about the potential that this charity has in influencing local policy, streamlining service delivery and bringing together the community as a whole.
Ciaran Bingham was a local lad from Belle Isle in South Leeds. About four years ago just before his 19 birthday, he died in a road accident. Ciaran was a proactive member of the community and was passionate about his local youth club; The Hunslet Club. He was always inspired by the positive work it did for young people.
The community were devastated about the news. His Mum, Margaret Bingham decided to organise a fundraising event for the Hunslet club. The success of the evening and all the wonderful parties she put on with help and support from other neighbours brought the people who don’t usually come out to socialise, out.
Hearing this cry for support particularly from the elderly, Margaret responded by putting on lunch clubs and themed nights at the local centres every month. Soon this became a regular occurrence and they now with local support and volunteers run lunch clubs three times a month in three different areas of South Leeds. They also provide a Christmas Meal (delivery only). Due to nature of the charity they also provide one to one support at weekends, evenings and bank holidays.
The success of this charity has snowballed locally winning them two Awards; The White Rose Award and the Hamara Community Award. Local ward councillors all support this charity as do different organisations they collaborate with. It really is a buzz to be with Margaret and her volunteers. You really feel the special bond they have with the people who come to the clubs. This is something that really needs to be kept going.
This is a local charity born out of the death of a young man. Who’s dream was the help other people. It was through this that the community identified its own needs. It has brought people together helping to carry on Ciaran’s legacy. They also provide counselling support to young people when dealing with a death of a sibling.
So i’m off to ‘chase the wind and touch the sky’ by zip wiring off Snowdonia on Wednesday 15th October. Although this requires very little effort on my part, (besides the fact i like travelling down hills at great speed on my bike) the charity we are raising funds for does however require, a lot of stamina, effort, perseverance and love.
Margaret is raising funds for employing a full time community worker to bring all the work together in helping roll out this more to other parts of the wards of south leeds. (Margaret is actually a midwifery support worker at Jimmy’s!)
I have already raised £54 offline to get to Wales, but I now require to the donations online to reach my £300 target. I figured if I get everyone I know to give a fiver I should be about there.
Check out the pictures on twitter on Wednesday.
Just go to http://www.localgiving.com and type in Ciaran Bingham Foundation and you’ll see me and two others.