It is the start of a new year of activities and fun, but before we begin here are a few updates of what happened during the summer.
- In June half term, Robots took over Caxton! The institute of imagination arrived to show members how to make their own motorised robots and LED circuits. We have continued to keep the equipment and have since made racing cars and flashing flower chains.
- The following day, sixteen members volunteered to help at Ebury Bridge gardens. They varnished, sheared hedges, dug weeds, planted seeds and ate plenty of millionaire shortbread. It was a brilliant day helping the community and the garden looked much improved. Mike Smith, the head of the project, has invited members back any time.
- Members have been very busy and enthusiastic with volunteering. In August, a small group volunteered to fundraise at our Local Sainsbury’s market: they helped pack bags and spread awareness about the youth club. In total, they raised £66.
- In fact, members are working hard to raise money, the Monday group have been working on enterprise skills, designing mugs to sell at the AGM and during the Wednesday art project they have made some incredible mosaic pots, all will be on sale in November.
- The art project has been really exciting this term, with lots of interactive projects. In July members went to various Royal parks and picturesque areas to take photographs for the offices of Fully Furnished who funded the project.
Caxton Community Garden
- This summer, the Caxton garden has also been in bloom. We have been cooking all the tasty vegetables, making samosas and Floyd’s favourite, Rhubarb crumble. We also hosted six caterpillars who gradually transformed into regal butterflies and were released. Caxton has been making efforts to attract wildlife, growing flowers for the bees and even installing worm composting. Now all our teabags and coffee go straight to feeding the worms. Our sunflower has even reached the first floor of the building!
- Caxton members are really thriving in their independence. This summer one youth club member was invited for work experience at WAH nail salon where she demonstrated amazing personal skills and was able to learn some impressive marbling techniques. Another member stepped forward to volunteer in the tuck shop every week this term and is showing vast improvement in her money skills. Several of our members are also taking part in the cooking sessions for the first time since they have joined (for some the first time in five years) and the results proved delicious. Some members have also been taking advantage of individual key work sessions and lots are requesting travel training in the autumn.
- The local Fire service also arrived with their fire engine to offer young people the opportunity to ask questions and discuss concerns they may have about fire safety.
- The Health and Personal Care programme is really taking off: if you come to Caxton on a Friday night you will see push-ups, football, boxing, members on the cross-trainer – and this is all at once! Youth club members are also being given opportunities to work one-to-one on developing their personal care skills.
- The summer holidays quickly advanced, starting with our second BMX trip. The leader Farah from accessbmx was astounded by the improvement made by bike riders. Members also enjoyed a two-day sports day with NCS the challenge where a group of 16 and 17-year olds joined us to run some sessions. As it was raining, everyone used a lot of ingenuity to run plenty of indoor gaming options.
- Also, in the summer our Jack Petchey Achievement award winners Eamonn and Alex, spent their award money on trips for members. Alex chose a Girl’s group trip to Brighton and Eamonn chose a Safari trip to Woburn safari park. The members were unperturbed by the August showers and the girls in particular still enjoyed parading along the beach.
- Girls group has been really insightful. This July, guests from the disabled women’s advocacy group Winvisible joined the session and the girls expressed their unique views on Human rights.
- We have experienced two Ripley’s and endless stories. The members have been taking full responsibility at Ripley: doing some of the food shopping independently, planning the trips, cooking and learning map reading skills. They’ve also been on some great adventures at Sayer’s croft shooting arrows and climbing through caves. As well as experiencing the blitz on a bus and relaxing on a concorde at the Brookland’s museum.