The Pod started the new year with a celebration for its 5-year anniversary. The charity organised a silent disco at the Vallis Youth and Community Centre with over 50 young people and their families attending. A great time was had by all and the young people and families said ‘It was the best time ever…excellent fun and just what we needed!’ The party marked the first time the charity has brought young people from all 3 clubs together, Sue Paxton, founder & Charity Manager said ‘the event was a huge success and went better than we could have wished for. We don’t think we will be waiting too long before we organize something like this again as it was so fun and accessible for everyone. We would like to thank the Frome Town Rotary and local DJ’s from Bass Beatz for helping us to make the event happen.’
The Pod Youth Club was set up in 2013 by parent carers and children who wanted a safe space for children with additional needs to make friends and develop social skills. 5 years on, the Pod Charity now runs 3 social clubs, Pod Youth Club for young people aged 10 – 17 years, the Zone Young Carers and Pod Plus for youth club leavers aged 18 to 30 years. The Pod also runs occasional holiday events for their young people and an increasing number of community outreach activities which includes a weekly charity bingo at the Cheese & Grain.
All activities are driven by our members and support staff and volunteers provide a safe and welcoming space, whilst supervising and supporting the activity choices. The charity is reliant on volunteers and funding to maintain services. If you know someone who may benefit from joining our social clubs, or would like to learn more or get involved, please call 07709 231536 or visit www.thepodcharity.org.uk
On the last weekend of June, 8 young people and two youth workers from The Zone Youth Club attended the national Young Carers Festival at the YMCA Fairthorne Manor in Hampshire.
For the young people, the experience “was so cool; on the first night they said really lovely things about being a young carer” and “it was really nice to think that everyone there is the same as you.” Zone Leader Jane said, “We took part in participatory consultations, which made us all think about whether our young carers are supported enough by professionals and if we could do more to help them within our club but also within schools. The group also took part in a research project which is studying how young carers are affected in later life, for example, with respect to their physical and mental health and wellbeing.”
The festival, run by The Children’s Society, gives young carers the opportunity to relax, socialise and have their voices heard about issues that affect them. The outcomes from the consultations inform future work and are also communicated to the government.
We would like to say thank you to everyone who supported our fundraising at the Independent Market and Bunnings, making it possible for us to take the group on this amazing opportunity.
The Zone Youth Club, run by The Pod Charity, benefits young carers aged 10-18 and aims to be a fun, relaxed place to unwind. We meet every other Wednesday from 6-8pm, many of our members have a sibling with a disability. Activities are driven by our youth members and have included film, cooking and challenge nights. Our youth work team provide a nurturing environment, whilst supervising and supporting the activity choices. If you know someone who may benefit from joining The Zone, please email firstname.lastname@example.org or contact Jane on 07736 470328.
The Zone is reliant on grants, donations and our own fundraising activities and is seeking funding to maintain services. If you feel like you could offer support or would like to get involved, we would love to hear from you.
On the 13th June the Pod held its fifth AGM with a cheese and wine evening for members and Friends of Pod. The charity that was started by parent carers in 2013 has grown from strength to strength, providing services for people with additional needs and Young Carers in the local area.
The trustees, staff team, members, and young people are looking forward to a fun packed year which will include first residential trips for all 3 projects and a special celebration with the young people to mark its 5th year. Sue Paxton, Founder and Charity Manager of the Pod said “We are very grateful to the new Frome Town Rotary for giving us the opportunity to talk at one of their meetings and coming along to our AGM. Their donation was from takings at the Rotary Shop and they are keen to find other ways of supporting us at a time when we are seeking local support to maintain the services we run’
If you are interested in learning more about the charity please visit our newly launched website www.thepodcharity.org.uk, telephone 07709 231536 or email email@example.com.