So as part of our Mosaic Reverse Christmas Calendar, which we have been giving back to the community in the form of working with charities and general good deeds, we thought we could help a local charity called Creating Adventures.
Creating Adventures was created to help bring laughter, stimulation and enrichment to the lives of adults ages 18+ with Autism and additional needs.
We got in touch with the charity and asked them some questions to help us to get to know the people behind this amazing organisation. Below we have displayed the charities answers:
1) Why did you found Creating Adventures?
I previously worked in a children’s charity which was an amazing time of my life. We had adults and their organisations/ carers approaching us to ask if the adults could access the centre but as we were a children’s charity it wasn’t possible. I was approached by a supported living company for adults who highlighted the need for activities for people 18yrs+ identifying a heartbreaking gap in society.
There is support for children with autism and learning disabilities including receiving much support from their schools but what happens when they reach the age of 18? The answer is very little, some are offered a place in college others may attend day opportunities whilst others are faced with long days at home it’s heartbreaking. It’s very difficult for the parents/carers so we involve them too- they do such an amazing job and worry about what will happen when they are gone.
I set about setting up Creating Adventures as I wanted the adults to have the same opportunities and life-enriching opportunities.
2) Who do Creating Adventures help and why?
We offer adults with autism and learning disabilities the opportunity to live an ‘ordinary’ life and one which is full of new stimulating activities and the opportunity to feel a sense of personal fulfilment. I always say that we want to put the twinkle back in their eyes and make them feel alive again inside if this has been lost.
Our activities aren’t just about the activity itself, in fact, that’s a by-product of what we actually achieve. We offer the adults the opportunity to socialise to avoid isolation and the chance to make new friends, develop their self-esteem and confidence and feel happier.
3) What is the most rewarding part of Creating Adventures for you?
It feels amazing to see the adults participating in the activity, achieving their goals, enjoying their time at the activity, with smiles on their faces and fire in their bellies. That’s what it’s all about. The hard work achieving funding for these activities and raising our awareness locally pays off when I see this, it’s such a fantastic feeling! Introducing people who have sponsored us or supported our work to our classes or activities- they see and feel what I see and at this point know why their support is important.
4) What does Creating Adventures have planned for 2020?
We have been chosen by the Co-op Local Causes Fund which will help us to start weekly Zumba ‘n Chill sessions and we have received part funding recently from St James’s Place Foundation towards a Digital Music Production project for adults aged 18-25 with an interest in using IT to compose their own digital music. We hope for this project to support our choir and upskill the adults, supporting them to achieve employment in this area.
We always want to achieve more, however, it’s important to sustain what you have already achieved and what has been successful. We would LOVE to have our own community facility because we currently hire rooms at Fairfield and Howley Neighbourhood Hub which is a fabulous centre however it limits what we can offer and we can’t add our identity to the room. If we had our own community facility we may be able to offer more, including just drop-in sessions with a coffee and chat.
We are very lucky to have been donated office space by UBC Serviced Offices in Rutherford House, Birchwood which we are extremely grateful for, however, our NEED is activity space for the community we serve.
5) Where do you see Creating Adventures being in 5 years?
Wow, what a question! In 5 years I would love to see our current activities blooming and even expanding, with our own community facility with more activities on offer. I see our ‘Beautiful Noise’ choir being invited to local festivals and we even have Britains Got Talent firmly in our sights.
We see ourselves being a vibrant local charity with everyone knowing about us and us offering a lifeline to local adults.
6) Any awards/proud moments to shout about?
We were a finalist in the North West Charity Awards under the category of ‘Small Charity, Big Impact’ in September this year, we were over the moon. Next year is our year!
2019 has been an amazing year!
We started the year running one regular activity for the adults plus our Christmas parties and have finished it with four activities plus Christmas parties. We have a weekly Art Club, a weekly Rock ‘n Pop Choir called ‘Beautiful Noise’ (named by the adults) and an annual Sports & Wellbeing Festival in partnership with Wolves Foundation, a monthly nightclub experience with MacIntyre and Christmas parties.
7) Any upcoming events/2020 events you want to mention?
We are just in the planning stages of our Sports & Wellbeing Festival with Wolves Foundation which we feel may be early July. We are looking for local sponsorship for this event which was a huge success this year with 87 adults and 38 carers joining us on a day when we had the worst weather so it can only get better!
We will be organising fundraising events for 2020 but there’s just me, our board of 3 trustees and a handful of volunteers including my mum, it’s extremely difficult as it is time-consuming. We had a Ladies Shopping Evening supported by the Village Hotel in 2019 which we hope to run again.
8) Most importantly how can businesses & individuals show support for Creating Adventures?
We have grown so much this year with the support of a few businesses and individuals so I dream of what we can achieve with the support of more. We are looking for businesses to adopt us as their Local Charity of the Year which is all about raising funds and more importantly raising awareness. I would be absolutely delighted if businesses could even invite me to talk this through more. We want to be one of the local charities that people have on their list when they come to choose a charity to support or to do a sponsored challenge. Word of mouth is huge and can lead to more opportunities.
We are looking for a community facility to expand our offer, a building that isn’t used/vacant shop I would love for people to contact me if they this.
We ask for people to follow us on social media to help us spread the word. We are on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and you’ll find me on LinkedIn.
We just want to bring pure joy to these adults in our community through our activities, we only get one shot at life and we should ALL be given the opportunity to live an ordinary but fulfilled and happy life. One parent who emailed me to say I was doing an amazing job said she had an older daughter who she does everything with, to ensure she lives ‘her best life’. I love this term and it encompasses what we do!
Founder of Creating Adventures, Jenny Allcock said:
“We would like to say thank you to Mosaic Digital Media for the opportunity to tell our story and help us spread the word.”
Looking to get involved?
There are a number of ways to get involved in this charity, take a look at the website to find out the best way you can get involved and support them. Alternatively, you can get in touch with them here to discover what’s best!