Supporting the younger generation

Funding level: Up to £1,000

Description

The Woodcraft Folk is a movement for children and young people, open to everyone from birth to adult. We are accessible to all regardless of age, sex, religion or race. We offer a place where children will grow in confidence, learn about the world and start to understand how to value our community, planet and each other. It was established 90 years ago, with the first group starting in Harlow more than 50 years ago. All our leaders and helpers are unpaid volunteers. (All over 16’s are CRB/DBS checked)

We are applying for your grant to cover our rent so our work can continue. We rent a local community hall at a cost of £1000 a year. Since losing a grant from the Co-op all our money has to go on Central Registration fees and rent. If we knew our rent was covered we could go back to subsidizing some trips for low income families and recruitment of both adults and children.

The weekly meeting is the backbone of our organization, enabling us to engage with the children and keep a support network for their families. During this children learn through fun activities like singing, playing, craftwork, cooking and debating. We also take part in outdoor activities including hikes and camps which often involve other groups. Events are organized by our National and Regional groups, which we also participate in. This may involve the hiring of centers which would be beyond an individual group, thus giving the children new experiences. Eg Sailing, wall climbing, high ropes and circus skills.

This year there was an international camp in Germany. This was an opportunity for the older children to meet other children from Britain and the rest of the world. Giving them opportunities to make friends and re-meet those from previous camps. As these camps are priced just to cover costs this is a good way for children from low income families to experience a trip aboard with all the benefits that brings.

We try to be involved with other groups and the public. In the past some of our older teenagers organized and ran geocaching days for other Woodcraft groups and the public. Many of them also help at the younger children’s group. One of our teenagers became the Vice-Chair of the regional Woodcraft group, chairing meetings of adult with confidence. We lost a young adult leader for a year when he went to work in Indonesia with street children. They both came to us as children and have grown up to become very involved and caring individuals, who want to give something back. The Chair of the local council was a member many year ago, again someone giving back. We feel we have a track record of empowering and emboldening young people, so they can go into adulthood and the wider world better able to cope with it and wanting to play their part in it. Our aim is to help children become well rounded confident adults, encouraging them to participate in society, which improves their lives and therefore the wider society in general.

If we are to continue with our work we need to keep the group going and to expand the knowledge and understanding of the children. We can only do this if the weekly meeting continues.

HARLOW WOODCRAFT FOLK

Moment of Pride

I have been involved with this organisation as a child, then a leader and now as a committee member. I have seen first hand the good work achieved by the groups as they help children grow in confidence by nurturing their abilities and involving them in discussions and decision making.

Location: Harlow