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Canine Partners £15,000
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Canine Partners

Canine Partners is committed to improving the quality of life and independence of people with a complex range of physical disabilities, the majority of whom use a wheelchair...

Canine Partners is committed to improving the quality of life and independence of people with a complex range of physical disabilities, the majority of whom use a wheelchair. This is done through the provision of highly trained assistance dogs, which are carefully selected and specially trained to carry out a number of specialised assistive tasks to increase the independence of their allocated human partners. These tasks may be difficult, painful or impossible for their partners to perform themselves. Tasks include opening and closing doors, unloading washing machines, helping people to undress, picking up dropped items, pressing buttons and switches and getting help in an emergency. The dogs also offer strong emotional support both to the partner and to family members, thereby providing additional evidence of the value of dogs in a therapeutic role – increasing confidence and self-esteem, bringing companionship, a sense of security and increased opportunities for social interaction.

Many of the individuals who receive our dogs return to work or further education as a result of the confidence they gain by having the companionship and responsibility of owning a dog. This has a lasting and profoundly positive effect on health and wellbeing.

Gaddesden Place Riding for the Disabled £6,000
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Gaddesden Place Riding for the Disabled

Gaddesden Place is a dedicated riding for the disabled centre giving over 100 children and adults with special needs and disabilities the opportunity to ride and have fun. W...

Gaddesden Place is a dedicated riding for the disabled centre giving over 100 children and adults with special needs and disabilities the opportunity to ride and have fun. We have 6 patient ponies and over 80 volunteers, including 7 unpaid instructors, who ensure that we can provide year round indoor and outdoor therapeutic riding – providing a positive activity that challenges and develops riders with both physical and mental disabilities.

This is not just a pony ride as the benefits of riding are far reaching: improving and strengthening muscle tone, improving balance and co-ordination and increasing confidence and social skills.

The activity benefits riders with a broad range of disabilities including cerebral palsy, learning difficulties, autism, muscular dystrophy, and sight and hearing impairment. We have specialist equipment including an electric lift and hoist so we can accommodate riders who may not be able to ride at other centres. We have also just introduced a new vaulting programme whereby a team of disabled riders learn to perform gymnastic routines on the back of a pony in walk and trot. This offers a different experience focusing on team work, core strength, balance and flexibility.

New Hope £4,000
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New Hope

New Hope prevents homelessness and transforms lives in Watford and the local area by giving people a safe place to stay and the support and opportunities they need to fully...

New Hope prevents homelessness and transforms lives in Watford and the local area by giving people a safe place to stay and the support and opportunities they need to fully recover. We give 60 people each night a safe place to stay and provide personalised support to hundreds more each year throughout their journey of recovery – from initially accessing the services they need while rough sleeping to keeping their tenancy after recovering from homelessness – offering opportunities for people to develop their confidence and skills at every stage.

Since the charity’s inception in 1990, New Hope has grown by continuing to respond to the needs of those who are homeless, and today we are one of the largest providers of homelessness services in the Home Counties and Watford Borough Council’s ‘preferred provider’, according to Watford’s elected mayor.

Road Victims Trust £6,000
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Road Victims Trust

The Road Victims Trust supports bereaved families and individuals to cope with the grief and trauma resulting from a fatal road collision, and to adjust to life without thei...

The Road Victims Trust supports bereaved families and individuals to cope with the grief and trauma resulting from a fatal road collision, and to adjust to life without their loved one.

We work across Luton, Bedfordshire, Hertfordshire and Cambridgeshire, and last year we reached 541 people.

We primarily provide counselling and emotional support, alongside information and practical support. Our counselling includes one to one support for adults and young people, play therapy for children, and whole family support, helping families to grieve together and support each other. Support normally takes place weekly, and continues for as long as is needed.

Over 90% of our work is supporting people whose family member was killed. This tends to be parents whose child was killed, but we also support partners, siblings, children and other family members. We work in partnership with the 3 Police Forces and Road Safety Partnerships to ensure we are informed of every fatality on the roads of the 3 counties.

People have told us:
“Words cannot express my gratitude…. You have journeyed with me through the darkest of times … You helped me to realise that one day I would enjoy the simple things in life again and that this would not be a betrayal of my love for my son.”

“They rang me for one hour once a week and, it sounds ridiculous, but I lived for that phone call. If I hadn’t had it, I think I’d have jumped off the balcony; it was all I had.”

St Albans Unit of Sea Cadets £4,000
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St Albans Unit of Sea Cadets

The Sea Cadet Corps is a nationwide, voluntary, uniformed youth organization open to young people aged between 10 and 18 years. The aim of the Sea Cadet Corps is to help you...

The Sea Cadet Corps is a nationwide, voluntary, uniformed youth organization open to young people aged between 10 and 18 years. The aim of the Sea Cadet Corps is to help young people towards responsible adulthood by encouraging valuable personal attributes and high standards of conduct, using a nautical theme based on customs of the Royal Navy. We want to help young people build confidence in their own abilities as they learn to work as part of a team. Our qualified instructors guide young cadets so that they can flourish in challenging environments safely. We aim to give boys and girls the best fun they’ve ever had – with a serious side too. The cadet unit works hard to be accessible to all youth.

We teach life skills from engineering, first aid, navigation, seamanship to cookery. We also provide the opportunity to join and complete the Duke of Edinburgh Awards program. Our exciting adventure activities aim to develop social skills and responsibility in young people, and re-connect them with their maritime heritage. We also aim to give our adult volunteers a worthwhile experience, providing training and development opportunities, often at zero (or considerably reduced costs).

The Brainwave Centre £15,000
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The Brainwave Centre

For over 35 years, Brainwave has helped children with disabilities and additional needs to achieve greater independence. Our aim is to increase the quality of life for the...

For over 35 years, Brainwave has helped children with disabilities and additional needs to achieve greater independence. Our aim is to increase the quality of life for the whole family by improving the child’s mobility, communication skills and learning potential through a range of educational and physical therapies. We support over 600 children a year, from the age of 3 months–12 years old, who have a range of conditions including autism, cerebral palsy and Down’s syndrome.
Our qualified and highly experienced therapists work together with the family to devise a unique therapy programme, specifically designed to help that child develop new skills such as learning to walk, ride a bike, write sentences, or feed and dress themselves.

Our therapists also continue to train in specialist areas such as Sensory Integration.
We have 3 centres which can be visited by families from Hertfordshire. We empower parents by teaching them how to carry out the therapy on a daily basis and we provide them with specialist equipment so that it can be completed at home. This means that they only need to physically visit one of our centres every 4-6months, but in-between that time we will continue to support their therapy. Our programmes are also shared with the child’s school, health professionals and other family members, so everyone is working towards the same goals.

The Ware (Skillman) Charity £4,000
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The Ware (Skillman) Charity

The Ware Skillman Charity was established in 1987 by a Legacy from Edward Skillman to provide and assist in the provision of recreational or educational facilities for young...

The Ware Skillman Charity was established in 1987 by a Legacy from Edward Skillman to provide and assist in the provision of recreational or educational facilities for young people living within the boundaries of Ware in the interests of Social Welfare. This is principally achieved by means of providing grants to children to attend school recreational trips, who would otherwise be unable to afford to take part. Work is carried out in conjunction with local schools and churches.

Willow £25,000
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Willow

Willow is the only national charity working with seriously ill young adults aged 16 to 40 to fulfil uplifting and unforgettable Special Days. Since 1999 Willo...

Willow is the only national charity working with seriously ill young adults aged 16 to 40 to fulfil uplifting and unforgettable Special Days. Since 1999 Willow has fulfilled more than 13,500 Special Days for young adults living with life-threatening conditions such as cancer, motor neurone disease, cystic fibrosis, muscular dystrophy and Huntington’s disease.

For those living with a life threatening illness, every day deserves to be treated as precious. The pressures of diagnosis, treatment and recovery can have a devastating effect on work and family life. Willow aims to redress the balance: providing unique and unforgettable Special Days tailored to the individuals needs.
Special Days provide a positive experience to be shared with a partner, parents, siblings, children or close friends. From the moment of application and the anticipation of the day to come, to the excitement of the day itself, Special Days create memories that are treasured forever.

Rachel, 31, had a Special Day after being diagnosed with cancer: ‘My Special Day made me forget about everything for a weekend. I felt normal, it boosted my confidence and I was able to have fun for the first time in ages.’
For some their Special Day is the opportunity to return some normality to their lives. For others it is the last chance to fulfil a dream. But for all, at what is the most difficult of times, a Special Day can lift spirits, reunify families and be a source of strength when it’s needed most.

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