January is always a difficult month for people struggling to make ends meet after the Christmas break. January was busy to say the least with the full impact of Christmas pressure taking effect – the volunteers in the Foodbank gave out 100 food parcels in January alone with enough food to feed 123 children and 94 adults.
The New Year is a time of reflection for most and so it is for us as a project. Staff and volunteers met together to look at our activity in the last year;
- We had over 6985 client contacts across all of our sessions and activities, an average of 582 contacts per month or 140 contacts per week. 1232 contacts were through the Recovery Café and 1599 through youth sport.
- We gave out 1152 foodbank parcels.
- We delivered 256 one-to-one support sessions during the drop-in sessions.
- We delivered 276 one to one sessions outside of our drop-in sessions.
We have a strong team of 20 volunteers who desire to make a difference – it’s a wonderful thing to be among such dedicated people who want to give up their time for free week after week.
We had a strong turn out for our multi-sports and football session after Christmas. The young people played well together; whenever we have a break the session back always feels good and it feels wonderful too to hear and see the young people have have missed it, value it and appreciate it! January saw the biggest number of attendees in a single session to date. The young people are inviting friends, there’s no better testimony to how good things are than that! We do need to look at getting additional support to really develop this work especially with a growing number of girls around with only a few joining in with the sports at the present time.
It was also good to be back out and about on our detached sessions around Pensnett and despite some very cold nights there were quite a few young people out and about too. It’s always good re-connect with the young people we know, checking in how the holiday period was although it’s not always a positive experience for some. It was also brilliant to see and speak to a young man who we’ve not seen for sometime. He is doing well which was really good and encouraging to hear. His life is moving in a positive direction – Fantastic!