Update November 2020

Charity Number 1151083

Staying safe in challenging times

This has been a challenging year and we hope that everyone has kept safe and coped with all the restrictions and difficulties caused by the pandemic.

The Centre in Risborough, along with our other venue in Bourne End, had to close at the end of March. Being aware that our clients would miss the social atmosphere and care that they receive we arranged for staff to keep in touch with them to offer support remotely.

Whilst closed, the Centre was used as a base for the Town Council’s very successful ‘Risborough Basket’ scheme and the Centre’s minibus was utilised to help with the deliveries. As you are aware our Chairman and Vice Chairman were heavily involved with that scheme which was a boon for the residents and the shopkeepers. Trustees have continued to oversee the Centres with their monthly committee meetings held on Zoom.

Since the restrictions were eased somewhat we re-opened in August and have been able to offer a service to reduced numbers of clients due to the need for social distancing. Our staff have been vigilant in ensuring their continued safety with many extra measures having been adopted to maintain the highest level of hygiene. Unfortunately this has meant that visitors, including volunteers, carers and most of the trustees, have been unable to visit the centre. Our caring staff have worked hard to provide interesting and enjoyable activities making the sessions as enjoyable as possible for our clients. The Centres have been able to remain open during this latest lockdown.

We have remained financially stable during this year thanks to the wonderful support we have received from Risborough Rotary, Heart of Bucks, Tescos, Buckinghamshire Council and the financial support from the Government’s Job Retention scheme. We also are indebted to our supporters in the local community. During this time we also have received very welcome grants from Red Kite to fund the continuation of our pottery sessions once the restrictions are lifted, and from the Co-op which was applied for last year in order to refurbish the upper hall. The grant that we received from the Kop Hill Climb last December has been used to replace the old carpet in the main hall and entrance areas. The Bourne End Centre is having a makeover this month including extra loft insulation and decorating work.

We very much look forward to the return of ‘normal’ times when we can cater for larger numbers of clients with more socially inclusive activities.

Maggie Wooster Keyte