Two community projects were treated to a transformation on Friday 20 September. Twenty-two colleagues from the Church Commissioners spent their team away day volunteering in the local community.
St Peter’s C of E Primary School:
An 11-strong team wasted no time getting to work at St Peter’s School in Paddington. The volunteers cut back brambles and nettles, removed weeds and pruned trees in the school garden. The school’s garden area has a pond which is used by the children to study insects and learn about fruit and vegetables. By clearing the overgrown vegetation, the children have more growing space and room to explore.
Pots at the school entrance and playground were brightened up with Pansies, Campanula and Euonymous plants. The team also planted hundreds of bulbs, meaning the space will be a riot of colour come spring. The shed, raised beds and glass house were all treated to a fresh coat of oil. This will protect them from the colder temperatures to come.
The volunteering day came to a lively close with volunteers receiving a special celebratory round of applause in the school’s Friday assembly.
The whole team really enjoyed the day. It was great to spend time with colleagues, away from the office, working together as a team painting and decorating or gardening. Everyone was really pleased with what they had achieved within the day, and many people are already looking forward to volunteering again next year.
Izzy Grigg- The Church Commissioners
The Marylebone Project:
A further 12 colleagues from the Church Commissioners spent the day supporting their local women’s shelter, The Marylebone Project.
The charity has 112 beds for homeless women and provides essential services for rough sleepers through a drop-in day service. The charity also supports women to return to independent living through education, employment support programmes and training opportunities.
A team of 6 were tasked with repainting the window and doors frames in the Portman Lounge. The Church Commissioners utilised their DIY know-how and quickly transformed the space with a fresh coat of paint. The hireable meeting space is an important source of income for the charity and provides service users with an opportunity to develop essential employability skills, as they help to manage bookings.
Across the road an additional team of five spent the day repainting the third floor of Bradbury House. Residents had been given the freedom to choose the paint colour as part of the charity’s commitment to recognising the importance of choice in aiding recovery and mental health.
The volunteering day came to an end with a compulsory group photo and before and after comparison of their amazing efforts.
If you and your colleagues would like to roll up your sleeves and help with practical projects like these, please contact our Community Team for details of opportunities.