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!
It always comes as a great surprise when we are invited to celebrate with people who live their lives outside our ‘bubble’. We can be so intent on what we do every day, we sometimes forget to lift our heads high enough to realise we are more connected than we think. What a buzz we got when Katrina, the daughter of Allen and Christine Simpson, contacted us to let us know that her parents were keen that guests at their upcoming joint 60th birthday party make a donation to Bridges Project in lieu of birthday presents. Allen knew about our work through his many years of voluntary service as a Children’s Hearings Panel member and is well tuned in to the needs of vulnerable children and young people. That relative strangers should so kindly think of us when they are celebrating their own important milestones is genuinely humbling. Christine and Allen’s birthday party went with a swing. Their guests and family were incredibly generous to Bridges Project and the evening raised an amazing £530 for Bridges. We are grateful to Christine, Allen, Katrina and their guests for thinking about us and being so kind. We are grateful to be reminded that acts of kindness – in sentiment and deed – are everyday occurrences and that we should be lifting our heads above the parapets a little more often to share and celebrate them.