Tell us what you do
We are a community based adult training centre that is situated at the heart of the Lion Farm Estate in Oldbury, in the ground floor of Harry Price House. Our centre provides a variety of activities for a wide range of groups. These include – Art classes which are delivered by a qualified art tutor from SAFL Our craft sessions are a chance for people to come together and share their craft skills with the rest of the group. We also provide online computer training. Job clubs are another method of support that we provide for the community. These take place four mornings a week, helping unemployed people produce a CV, register with ‘Universal Jobmatch’, set up an email account and apply for jobs.
We also provide a number of activities specifically for children – we run our own After School Club which operates five days a week. Children will attend our club straight from school where they will take part in a range of activities until 5 o’clock. This is supported and funded by BBC Children In Need. Lastly, we also provide our own holiday play scheme during the summer break and this year we also delivered a February Half Term Holiday Play Scheme as well.
What is your proudest achievement?
We are particularly proud of the friendly approach and individual support we have continued to provide for the community. Centre users feel extremely comfortable here and enjoy the activities and support we provide.
What is your experience of support received from SCVO?
The Centre has been a member of SCVO for many years. SCVO has supported the centre through several funding applications and through achievement of PQASSO standards levels 1 and 2. SCVO is currently acting as a Local Trusted Organisation for Lion Farm to Grace Mary Big Local Area (gm2lf).
What is the most valuable lesson you have learnt about working with people in Sandwell?
The most valuable lesson we have learnt is that appearances can be deceptive. The Lion Farm Estate has not always had the best reputation, but having worked with local people we have found that there is a strong community spirit and our users are very supportive of us and each other, they look upon the Centre as ‘one big family’.
What are your plans for the future and some of the challenges you face?
We are currently in the process of registration with the Charities Commission. We feel that this is more appropriate to our operations and will open up more funding opportunities. Currently the main challenge we face is finding the resources to help low skilled, long term unemployed people back into employment, this may include people with long term health problems and learning difficulties that have been assessed as fit for work.
How can SCVO help to support your organisation in the future?
We have always been happy with the support we have received from SCVO and would like this close relationship to continue.
For more information please contact 0121 544 3094 or firstname.lastname@example.org