We're massive advocates of 'Giving Back' and that's why we've recently worked with two local charities.
The Elm Foundation www.theelmfoundation.org.uk
This fantastic charity in Chesterfield, Derbyshire, is 'Working to end Domestic Abuse'.
Andrea first met the service manager at a Women Entrepreneurs' networking event in December 2017 and was immediately taken with the sheer enthusiasm and commitment the staff have to help both victims and perpetrators of Domestic Abuse.
Their head office is the first encounter any service user has with The Elm Foundation, when fleeing to their safety. It's situated in a potentially stunning Victorian Villa, but was sadly dingy and very unloved.
Andrea pledged her time and expertise, for free, to refurbish parts of this wonderful building back to its former glory and create a virtual 'hug' for anyone venturing through its doors and has now succeeded!
Having personally been in two previous abusive and controlling relationships, Andrea knows, first-hand, that the service users have gone through enough pain and trauma when walking into a sanctuary, that all they need is to feel calm and safe.
Andrea has now transformed The Elm Foundation's Reception and Waiting Room to create a calming and tranquil ambience, where service users won't feel that they're simply being 'put up'.
Potentially stunning cut-string staircase with 'nicotine-yellow' gloss.
Generous donations dumped, due to no, much needed, storage.
Void where additonal storage could be added.
Reception desk from when the building used to be a Care Home and doorway leading to the Waiting Room.
Waiting Room, with children's toys simply strewn around and no room to move.
The utterly heart-wrenching notice to advise well-wishers that donations cannot be accepted due to lack of storage...!
All gloss-work on the staircase, doors and wall-panels finally rubbed down, after 5 solid weekends' graft - we had no fingerprints left!
Large storage room erected and plastered, ready for shelves, hanging-rail and door.
Further low-height storage cupboard in previously unused void.
Reception desk partially ripped out, to allow for easier movement around the reception area.
Cupboard to tidy up the phone wires and power box from behind the old reception desk.
Everything's now ready for painting.
After - Sanctuary found!
Calm and tranquil surroundings to welcome traumatised individuals to the sanctuary and safety The Elm Foundation provides.
Service users, can now relax knowing that they are about to start their new journey too a better life.
Sheffield Futures www.sheffieldfutures.org.uk
This South Yorkshire charity is committed to working with underprivileged and neglected young people.
Many of us have been lucky enough to grow up in a safe and supportive environment, whilst others may not have had the same, straightforward, circumstances.
Sheffield Futures are tirelessly working with Sheffield's young people in numerous ways, from support with CV Writing to prevention and awareness of Child Sexual Exploitation.
We were first introduced to this amazing charity at Sheffield's Lord Mayor's Dinner and, again, our support is in aiding the transformation of their facility refurbishment where Andrea, again, pledged her time and expertise, for free, offering advice on creating a refreshed and inspirational working space for the charity's staff areas, which we're delighted to help with.