ProWatch – A New Initiative

We are always surprised to hear that there are many people in and around Chard who haven’t heard about the amazing project we run. We don’t just want to promote the project, it’s making sure we can reach everyone who can BENEFIT from becoming involved with us.

Our ProWatch initiative will run over an eight month period, and has been made possible by a grant from Chard Town Council. We will be using this grant to review and update our promotional and marketing material. We will be improving our website, enhancing our use of social media and targeting the local press/radio to help promote our weekly project.

In addition, we will be using the money to enhance our display boards & promotional literature – this will help promote the project at community events, networking meetings & promotional events. Thank you Chard Town Council, for supporting us to help make a difference to people in the community we all share.

Walking the Exe Valley Way – preparations continue

Jeff, Julie & Maya have been out and about getting ready for their walk to raise money for Chard Watch project. A weekend jaunt saw them walking from the source of the River Exe to Exford & it certainly whetted their appetite to start the whole walk in a couple of weeks.

Amanda Broom, Friends Coordinator joined them for this initial leg and said “They are certainly going to have fun keeping Maya out of the River Exe! We had a beautiful day to go through the plans for the walk and do the source section, support for the walk has been brilliant – we have lots of people joining in and over £200 has already been raised – if you can help by sponsoring them then please do so”.

The walk starts on Sunday 29th September and will continue for 5 days when they get to Starcross. If you want more information on how you can get involved then please contact Amanda by email: amandabroom.watchproject@gmail.com

If you would like to sponsor Jeff, Julie & Maya to help raise money for Chard Watch the Just Giving page is: https://www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/chard-watch

Thank You Tesco – Bags of Help

A huge thank you goes to Tesco for the Bags of Help grant they have given us, and of course to all of the shoppers who choose us. In total we received £1,000 and this has gone a long way to helping pay for a Volunteer Coordinator, as well as some day trips out for our members. 
 
Through our Volunteer Coordinator we have been able to support our student volunteer placements and enrol new volunteers to help our project.  We are always on the look out for new volunteers – if you think you could spare some time to help us, please email LeonieGirling.watchproject@gmail.com
 
 

Members at Folly Farm…Thank you Tesco 🙂

Members at Folly Farm

Donations & Grants – thank you

We would like to give our heartfelt thanks to the following donations & grants:
 
Combe St Nicholas Church – £100 donated
We are very grateful to Combe St Nicholas Church for their continued support, which has been regular donations to us. We plan to use this funding for transport hire, which will enable members to go on conservation trips – which helps their health & wellbeing. 
 
Chard Watch offers a social inclusion hub helping isolated adults of all ages come together to make valuable peer friendships. These relationships are helping enormously to connect people so they can feel less lonely and eventually find hope. All donations help a long way to keeping our doors open every Thursday in Chard where we offer a range of activities, talks, confidence building courses etc. 
 
One Stop Carriers for Causes – £1000 grant (up to)
This fantastic grant has been awarded by One Stop, Carriers for Causes to us for Peer Support Training. This means that all of our facilitators, who deliver Peer Support Training, will receive a training package designed to ensure we continue to deliver courses at a high standard, right across Somerset. Our courses are designed bespoke for lots of different groups, if you would like any more information, and find out if we can design a high quality course for you then email info.chardwatch@gmail.com 
 
 

Walking the Exe Valley Way – raising money for Chard Watch

Jeff Townsend, his sister Julie Bingham & her dog Maya are walking the Exe Valley walk to raise funds for Watch.

Both Jeff and Julie have a long connection of volunteering, donating and supporting Chard Watch. Jeff says “I have lived in Somerset and Devon for nearly 60 years loving the countryside of both particularly the many varied rivers. The Exe is my favourite, rising in Somerset before flowing over 50 miles to Exmouth. Now at the age of 74 I intend to achieve a long-held ambition to walk its length at the same time raising money for the charity WATCH. Nearly five years ago having just lost my wife I volunteered for WATCH and found the peer support I received gave my life meaning again now I hope to repay that kindness by raising money to help the charity continue it’s inspirational work”.

Julie adds “My brother Jeff mentioned to me that he would like to walk the source of the Exe to raise money for Watch. I asked Jeff if I could join him as I so enjoy walking with my flatcoat retriever Maya and would like to take the opportunity to support Jeff in raising funds for Watch, such a worthwhile cause.”

 The walk is being planned to start on Sunday September 29th 2019, and will be done across 5 days. We are hoping that lots of supporters, members of Chard Watch will not only join in, but also help to raise money. Details of the routes are below, but if you would like to join on any of them please contact AmandaBroom.Watchproject@gmail.com for more details.  If you would like to donate online the fundraising page is: www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/chard-watch 

Route card Watch

2 – Exford to Hawkridge 8 miles 2 – Exford to Hawkridge 8 miles 3 – Hawkridge to Brushford (stop Dulverton) reduced 5 miles 4 – Brushford to Bampton (changed starting in Dulverton) 6 miles 5 – Bampton to Tiverton 8 miles 6 – Tiverton to Bickleigh 4 miles 7 – Bickleigh to Thorverton 4 miles 8 – Thorverton to Brampford Speke 9 – Brampford Speke to Exeter 5.5 miles 10 – Exeter to Starcross 8 miles

Watch Project AGM 2019

The AGM for Chard Watch Project was really well attended & saw some fantastic speakers as well as member led talks. Chard Watch CIC is a community project in the heart of Chard helping isolated adults come together to form valuable friendships. They have a history of understanding mental health issues and how peer support can reduce the barriers people can feel in their community. Watch also helps our members to engage in many activities that improve their mental health and well-being and build their own personal resilience.

One of the most delightful parts of the Watch Project AGM, is that members contribute to the proceedings, hearing their many journeys is always enlightening. This year, a newly formed singing group from the watch, who have been rehearsing for weeks treated the audience to their version of ‘This is me’ from the Greatest Showman.

The Watch Project links in with many other mental health groups & campaigns such as ‘Time for Change’. Many members have signed up to become time to change champions and talk at events – all of which helps to break down the barriers of mental health.

The guest speaker was Yaz Murfin, from Somerset Fire Service who spoke about the home service visits which the Fire Service offer. Yaz also spoke about the multiple risk factors that increase the likelihood of having a fire, anything that the fire service can do to reduce these risks.

The Watch Project are always on the look out for Volunteers, and Friends. Amanda Broom, Friends of Watch Co-Ordinator, spoke about a fund-raising idea being undertaken in September. Jeff Townsend, his sister Julie Bingham & her dog Maya are walking the Exe Valley walk to raise funds for Watch.

Both Jeff and Julie have a long connection of volunteering, donating and supporting Chard Watch. Jeff says “I have lived in Somerset and Devon for nearly 60 years loving the countryside of both particularly the many varied rivers. The Exe is my favourite, rising in Somerset before flowing over 50 miles to Exmouth. Now at the age of 74 I intend to achieve a long-held ambition to walk its length at the same time raising money for the charity WATCH. Nearly five years ago having just lost my wife I volunteered for WATCH and found the peer support I received gave my life meaning again now I hope to repay that kindness by raising money to help the charity continue it’s inspirational work”.

Julie adds “My brother Jeff mentioned to me that he would like to walk the source of the Exe to raise money for Watch. I asked Jeff if I could join him as I so enjoy walking with my flatcoat retriever Maya and would like to take the opportunity to support Jeff in raising funds for Watch, such a worthwhile cause.”

The walk is being planned to start on Sunday September 29th 2019, and will be done across 5 days. We are hoping that lots of supporters, members of Chard Watch will not only join in, but also help to raise money. Anyone interested should contact AmandaBroom.Watchproject@gmail.com for more details.  If you would like to donate online the fundraising page is: www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/chard-watch

Julie Bingham, Amanda Broom, Jeff Townsend & Maya planning the Exe Valley Way walk

The Watch Project meets every Thursday, and is wholly grateful to its supporters and funders who make this possible, in particular National Lottery with reaching Communities funding, Yarlington, Somerset Community Foundation, Somerset County Council & Somerset Skills and Learning.

Watch welcomes Bournemouth University

We were really pleased to welcome three students from Bournemouth University recently. Katie Hunt, Lucy Bond & Leah Baker are undertaking a community assessment based on a Windshield Survey to assess the health needs of Chard residents.

A windshield survey is an informal survey where the health professional drives around the community/area they are researching, and records his/her observations.
For Nurses to be able to knowledgeably plan services for a community, it is essential to know a specific community, identify health-related resources that may be helpful to members, and learn about gaps in services. 

We were happy to help & look forward to seeing the completed assessment.

Katie Hunt, Lucy Bond & Leah Baker

 

 

Space Seed

Space Seed by Colin Tracy photographer/artist

Julie Matthews, CEO

I have often had an image of a dandelion and when blowing how those seeds make their journey to somewhere new. When I recently saw this photo on sale by photographer Colin Tracy, I instantly bought it. I see the dandelion in this picture like the ‘Watch project’ evolved over some 12 years of peer support. A team, a family working together. Then a touch of wind and the seeds go into space on their own, finding their own way, with their own resilience. 

This last year, the project has managed to turn itself around with the endless contributions of staff, volunteers and members adding their life skills to make it work. This next year we are hoping we can support more ‘space seeds’ to find their own world of hope and potential.

http://fullyfocusedphotos.photodeck.com/

Colin Tracy – Fullyfocusedphotos

I have lived in Dorset for over 30 years all the while photographing it in details and its wider vistas. I have a passion for photographing all things natural but my greatest love is photographing insects and flowers – often together in their symbiotic relationship. Having said that, I almost always have my camera with me and often – rather than ‘chasing’ an image – I will wait with interest to see what occurs or what I am drawn to. So the pattern on the surface of still water made by a drop falling from a wet tree is of equal interest as the structure of a flower or the beautiful Dorset landscape. 

 

Thank you – generous donations keep coming in

We would like to thank the following groups & people for their really kind and generous donations to Chard Watch Project. Our heartfelt thanks go to everyone who has donated:

The Red Box Project, Chard has donated several boxes of sanitary towels for our members and they also run an amazing project themselves, more information can be found on the following link http://redboxproject.org/locations/

Bruton and District Flower Club have donated £112.50 

Mr & Mrs P Jones have donated £165

Chard Angling Club have donated £100

Chard Watch offers a social inclusion hub helping isolated adults of all ages come together to make valuable peer friendships. These relationships are helping enormously to connect people so they can feel less lonely and eventually find hope. All donations help a long way in keeping our doors open every Thursday in Chard where we offer a range of activities, talks, confidence building courses etc. 

 

Member of the month for June – Patrick Smith

Congratulations to Patrick Smith who has been voted as member of the month for June. Patrick has been busy helping to set up the Thursday project; organising activities and helping in the kitchen. Thank you Patrick!!

dav