Jersey Charity Awards 2015 - Winners

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Once again there were three categories for the 2015 Jersey Charity Awards:

• Small Charity of the Year (15 or fewer staff/volunteers)
• Medium Charity of the Year (between 16 and 35 staff/volunteers)
• Large Charity of the Year (36+ staff/volunteers)

The awards were judged by an independent and diverse panel of judges comprising of Senator Paul Routier MBE; local businessman Kevin Keen; Arclight Solutions Ltd Senior Consultant Jane Galloway and Liz Le Poidevin Deputy Chairman of the Association of Jersey Charities, who were looking for examples of excellence, together with ideas and leadership to inspire and from which others can learn.

Prizes are to be awarded, for all 3 categories are as follows:
£5,000 to the winner of each category
£1,000 to the runner up of each category
£500 to the charity in third place for each category as listed below:

Small Charity of the Year - Short List
Jersey Centre for Separated Families
After Breast Cancer Jersey
Shopmobility, St Helier
SMILE Jersey
Silkworth Lodge

The standard of entries in the Jersey Charity Awards 2015 Small Charity of the Year category was indeed exceptional and extremely varied, from Smile Jersey who help support the 10,000 or so people on the island who suffer from chronic pain by providing a forum and signposting service, to Silkworth Lodge which has for over 30 years provided an exceptional and invaluable service helping people recover from drug and alcohol dependency.

All of the causes in the small category, including Jersey Centre for Separated Families who offer an early intervention service for separating parents and their children to help prevent them from having go to court, assisting the children through what can be an extremely difficult time, to maintain strong healthy relationships with both parents, are all deserving of an award and recognition.

3rd: Silkworth Lodge (The Families in Recovery Trust)

It is no secret that Jersey has a severe problem with drug and alcohol issues but it’s not just the individual that suffers, its often those closest to them, so we awarded them 3rd prize for this new initiative – The Silkworth Lodge Family Program, was a logical extension of their existing work, focussing on:

1. Providing the right information and support for families and loved ones, who often bear the burden, in order to make the best informed choices around their loved ones addiction.
2. Increases the awareness of addition and the signs to look out for.
3. Give access to ‘one to one’ and group sessions, hearing from like minded people and recovering alcoholic addicts about how it was for them.

2nd: Shopmobility St Helier

We applaud the leadership and resourcefulness of the Shopmobility team, taking advantage of a unique opportunity to expand their range of services, for islanders and visitors alike, helping them to get out and about and do the things most people take for granted such as shopping, a meal out or simply being able to get out of the house and visit somewhere.

This initiative has opened up a well know service to an increased user base, by working collaboratively with the Occupational Therapy Department, Shopmobility has been able to offer heavily subsidised electronic mobility scooters and powered chairs to people who are largely house bound, with limited means, maintain a far greater level of independence.

The mobility aids (16 standard and 4 heavy weight machines) were secured at a fraction of the real costs at just £11,100 from machines barely used at the London Olympics, representing a saving of £50k, which has enabled them to meet their initial demand for the scheme, whilst keeping all other costs, such as maintenance, repairs and insurance within budget.

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1st: After Breast Cancer Jersey

After Breast Cancer was set up to provide women diagnosed with breast cancer, emotional support and financial help with the purchase of items such as wigs, lymphoedema sleeves, cleaning, ironing, post operative bras etc.

In the last year, working with the Oncology department and the Breast Care Unit, they have purchased a vein finder and new portable scanner, enabling earlier diagnosis and freeing up the Scanning Departments and consultants time. They are now also funding post operative bras, at a cost of around £5,000 per annum, which the Breast Care nurses measure people up for, helping to ensure the correct fit, for maximum comfort and support post operatively.

This was a well thought out initiative, purely voluntary driven which has had a significant impact in helping to restore confidence in women affected by breast cancer. Whilst this first prize award of £5,000, will enable them to continue providing post operative bars for the next year, it will also help them to look at delivering exercise classes specifically designed for breast cancer patients.

Medium Charity of the Year - Short List
Autism Jersey
Brighter Futures
Headway Jersey
Caring Cooks
Jersey Foster Carers Association

The entries in the Medium sized Charity of the Year category were again of an excellent standard, with many innovative and interesting initiatives, reflecting the diverse range of services delivered by medium sized organisations across the island.

From Caring Cooks of Jersey, who seek to address the often unseen but very real - food poverty crises in Jersey, by providing a weekly meal service to people in need. And their Community Cooking Programme which was set up to address a lack of basic cooking skills and a lack of nutrition and obesity in children, by teaching parents over 5 weeks, how to cook 2 nutritionally balanced and healthy meals each week, on a budget of just £10 per week.

To Headway Jersey who have further developed their rehabilitation services for people with head injuries, to include a wide range of complimentary therapies including Art, Cognitive Rehabilitation, music, swimming and group exercise sessions. Committed to making a long term difference to people’s lives, we also applaud the work of Brighter Futures, who significantly improve the life chances of families, particularly those from troubled backgrounds.
It was a hard won contest with so many deserving causes that we wish all could have won an award.

3rd: Brighter Futures

In January this year, Brighter Futures hosted its inaugural conference, entitled ‘Working Together for Families’ at a local hotel, with the objective of:

1. Increasing awareness of the importance of acting early to enhance the outcomes for children.
2. Foster debate towards ensuring high quality ‘joined up’ Early Intervention Services for Jersey.
3. Advocate for the adequate, efficient and transparent collaborative working practices between all service providers.
4. Provide representation to all stakeholders to participate in the decision making process

The conference was a major success, bringing together multiple agencies who are involved in working with families, raising awareness of the importance of early intervention and investment in early years of children’s lives (the 1001 critical days between conception to the age of two).

At the conference the Chief Minister expressed his commitment to the 1001 critical days agenda and announced the development of a task force to bring together expertise and knowledge from across the States and the voluntary and community sector to make sure the services, and the solutions they deliver are suitable for Jersey families

2nd: Autism Jersey

Autism Jersey champions full and inclusive lives for islanders on the autism spectrum and this project – Awesome for Autism campaign, demonstrates real innovation raising in excess of £20,000 for a modest investment of just £3,000.

The two main aims of Awesome for Autism was to raise awareness of autism and understanding of the condition, which leads to changing perceptions, improving social experience and enabling better access to diagnosis and services. The second aim being to engage and inspire supporters, and volunteers to fundraise for the essential services provided by Autism Jersey.

The campaign demonstrated great engagement with commercial and community sectors, involving over 7000 people who took part in different activities in April, with 2000 school children and 1500 employees taking part in a ‘Bake’ or ‘Wear’ something Awesome for Autism.

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1st: Jersey Foster Carers Association

This group was set up by foster carers a few years ago, to encourage and promote welfare between foster carers and their families, to ensure that all children are fully supported.

Children who through no fault of their own, entering the fostering process can find it a difficult and stressful time often turning up at the door with very little at all, or what little possessions they have, in a black sack. When the child moved on, unless the foster parent provided a suitcase (at their own expense) they would leave in much the same way.

The group therefore decided that they would provide suitcase for each child and a ‘welcome box’ tailored to the child’s age and sex, where they could store their own items and keep it forever. It’s initially filled with goodies and necessities such as flannels, toothbrush, toothpaste, hairbrush, soaps and fun items such as disposable cameras and a photo album so they could record some of their own life events.

Although this was going to cost just £150 per child, this purely voluntary group didn’t have the funds but managed to secure donations and found a company to support this initiative for five years.

This simple, well thought through project really benefits the children and we hope that winning this first prize will help raise the profile of Jersey Foster Carers Association and the ever growing need for foster parents.

Large Charity of the Year - Short List
Jersey Citizen’s Advice Bureau
Les Amis
Jersey Hospice Care
Age Concern Jersey

The applications for the Large Charity of the Year category were again of a very high quality indeed, the judges found it difficult to decide the winner as they felt all were worthy of recognition but after much debate the winners were unanimously agreed upon.

From the amazing work that Jersey Hospice Care do and their landmark decision to open their services to people suffering from all life limiting diseases, which has impacted significantly on all of their services (financially and in terms of resources and staff) which have seen a 42% increase in new referrals, from non cancer related conditions. To the moving story presented by Age Concern, in this the 70th anniversary of the liberation of Jersey.

3rd: Jersey Citizens Advice Bureau

Jersey Citizens Advice Bureau provide free, independent , confidential and impartial advice for the problems people face, as well as working towards improving the policies and practices that affect a broad cross section of the Jersey population.

The database is an essential tool in managing the workload and maintaining the support and interest of sponsors and stakeholders, it’s at the core of the community members who rely on its services, containing some 40,000 client records.

Their project, whilst not ‘sexy’ was integral to their operations and they set up a task force, comprising of volunteers, front line staff and the Board, to look at their data management, to resolve issues with their existing system, bringing it ‘inline’ with current day thinking.

2nd: Age Concern Jersey

In this the 70th anniversary of the liberation of Jersey at the end of the 2nd world war, Age Concern organised a special event for survivors of the occupation, allowing them to get together and share their memories. Held at the Pomme D’Or, which was a strong focal point for the actual act of liberation back in 1945, which evoked many memories of that time.

The event grew rapidly and needed modifying as it progressed with an increase form the original 240 places to the final 300. Places were allocated on a first come first served basis and the event, which included a 3 course meal, was designed to ensure guests felt like they were being treated as VIP’s for the day and that they were respected for their status as occupation survivors.

This was a great project with a clear timeline, that demonstrated excellent community engagement with primary schools getting involved in making bunting and one school who interviewed survivors about their occupation experiences, with the illustrated reports of these interviews available for people to read.

Jersey Post sponsored miniature Red Cross parcels containing chocolates for each attendee. Local groups provided the entertainment and Age Concern staff and volunteers all played a crucial role in making this event a huge success.

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1st: Les Amis

Les Amis has been providing residential and respite care in Jersey for several decades and more recently outreach services for people with leaning difficulties and other associated conditions.

The concept and benefits of respite have been extensively documented and a scrutiny panel from the States of Jersey noted the need to develop more suitable services to meet the growing need across the island.

In conjunction with Le Vaux Housing Trust, Les Amis set about developing a suitable provision for respite, able to cater for wheelchair users they built a bespoke ‘fit for purpose’ facility that addressed access issues, Mourant Lodge was subsequently built, opening its doors last year and running very effectively since then.

This was a well organised project that addressed an important, clear and increasing need in Jersey. Respite care benefits the caregiver and the person being cared for significantly. We would also like to acknowledge the unsung heroes at Les Amis - the staff who provide this care, as their dedication to the people they help should also be applauded.