As Volunteers’ Week is drawing to a close, we would like to acknowledge the valuable contribution of one of our brilliant volunteers, Hannah Taylor.
A 17- year-old from Tranent has found the lockdown to be beneficial to her learning. Chloe just successfully completed two accredited assessments in Animal Care in one day. Read more
15-year-old Alex Whyte from Loanhead has defied the odds. After not having attended high school at all, he has now gained skills accreditation and started volunteering regularly.
Despite the difficult times we are all experiencing, Bridges Project staff have discovered positive elements of working with young people remotely. Read more
Last week’s Digital Youth Work went down a creative storm. Huge thank you to all that took part in the Appointment Card challenge. These creations will be posted throughout the week – so keeps your eyes peeled.
Check out our latest Way2Work#Cashback year 2 annual report.
Spring is in the air and we’ve entered Kiltwalk season! Grant, our Transitions Development Worker in East Lothian’s high schools, will be putting a ‘spring’ in his step and embarking on the 23 mile jaunt from Glasgow to Balloch on Sunday 28th April, in aid of Bridges Project!
Over the last few years, we have enjoyed the company and welcomed the contributions made by our social work interns from Germany.
Thanks to funding from Musselburgh Area Partnership, we’ve been able to respond to the many requests from our young people living in the local area to put on a new cooking group. The purpose of the group was to give young people the experience of working alongside a professional chef to help build confidence, learn about healthy eating, work as a team and try something new while devolving new skills. At the end of the course, they were offered the chance to gain their Elementary Food Hygiene (REHIS) certificate – something that is required for many areas of work from catering to childcare.
1st August 2018 is the launch date of Bridges Project’s new Support2Succeed service, thanks to funding awarded through the European Social Fund and the Scottish Government. The Service is supported by the £9.7m Growing the Social Economy Programme as part of the Fairer Scotland Action Plan to tackle poverty and inequality.
Folk are generally supportive about the work we do with young people. Folk we know: teachers; social workers; housing officers; nurses; mums; dads and others who have a live connection to the Project. It’s great to get positive feedback. It’s great to be able to celebrate the success of young people with them and their families. We’re proud as punch when they feel positive about and empowered by successfully navigated routes to achieving life milestones. Leaving school to got to college. Leaving homeless accommodation to set up their first tenancy. Completing a training course or getting their first job! Once in a while, we are invited to celebrate other events: the birth of a child; a college graduation or the tearing up of L driver plates. We are used to celebrating in our somewhat self-contained world. We love it!
Ruth works with our Transitions Team in all six East Lothian secondary schools. She introduced her North Berwick employability group to Screen Education Edinburgh to explore issues around cyberbullying. Screen Education Edinburgh used CashBack for Creativity funding to work with the group after school over a number of weeks to produce a short film on cyberbullying. The group were involved in storyboarding, scripting, acting and all matters of filming. Their powerful story is told in the short film here: https://vimeo.com/206611143
We are delighted to receive an award of £45,000 over three years from The Robertson Trust to support the work of our specialist Tutor Service. The grant enables the service to deliver regular, tailored one-to-one, needs led literacy and mathematics tuition and educational and study support for 40 young people each year. We will also run a demand led educational support programme including: college preparation groups; work placement preparation groups; maths support group and animal care study support groups. A programme of skills for life groups is planned including: money management; money handling; independent living skills and a range of cultural and learning opportunities such as theatre performances, science festival visits etc.
April 2016 ushered in a fantastic collaboration with the Outreach Team at the Scottish National Portrait Gallery to introduce young people to exciting, participative contemporary art in Scotland.
Bridges Project values the energy, expertise and new ideas which volunteers, interns and placement students bring to our work with young people. It’s particularly interesting for young people when new faces also bring experience of living and working in different countries and cultures. Over the years we have welcomed great people from Germany, Norway, USA, Sicily, Australia, France and Spain. It feels as if our garden has been visited by dragonflies! They arrive, bringing extra colour and vibrancy to the place and then leave after a short while. Each one of our overseas visitors has made an impression…left a footprint. We are all the better for this.
Bridges Project welcomed its first referrals 30 years ago when staff were based in a small office in Cranston Street, Edinburgh. At that time, our main focus was in helping young tenants across the Lothians to make a success of their new homes. Poverty, social isolation, anxiety, poorly connected social anchors, unemployment and welfare reform were just some of the issues young people and staff had to deal with on a daily basis.
It’s always nice to feel appreciated for what we do. Our friends and regular donors, the members of Inner Wheel Club of Musselburgh, have been at it again – making us feel appreciated with a fantastic donation of £200 to support our work. The generosity of members over the last few years has been immense; we are delighted to be supported by this local organisation which is part of a much bigger whole. Find out more about their work here: http://innerwheeldistrict2.org.uk/index.php/clubs/musselburgh