This year our stake has undertaken the planning and execution of 6 projects! 5 of which happened on Saturday July 2nd 2011 (see posts to left). 1 of which is due to happen in Cambridge in coming weeks. Watch this space for details!
86 year old Ray Stevens is a LOCAL HERO who works full time as the sole (unpaid) gardener at the Braintree Hospital. He commented, "I am overwhelmed at the work being done here. It is wonderful to see young people working for their community. I could never have done all this. Thank you so much."
2007 Helping Hands
...in the news!
2007 Helping Hands Feedback
"What can I say about the weekend - you were all so fantastic! I can't believe the difference one day and the hard work and generosity of so many lovely people giving up their free time to help us has made to the hospital. Every project has been a credit to the teams who undertook them; the on-site administration had everything running smoothly; the children singing were enjoyed immensely by the patients and even the little ones in the creche - for whom it was a very long day - were very well behaved. It's such a shame the weather couldn't have been kinder to us.
I didn't leave the hospital until nearly 10 pm as I took the opportunity to walk the site in the peace and quiet of the evening to take it all in. I must confess that I sat and had a few tears on a bench, in the rain, as the improvements you have made were quite overwhelming. Could you please convey my personal thanks, from the bottom of my heart, to all the wonderful people who helped to make this happen. The hospital has become a much more welcoming place for patients, visitors and staff and a credit to the community. Thank you all, once again, and all I can say is... Groundforce - eat your heart out!"
Laurie Payne Mid Essex Primary Care Trust Manager
2005 Helping Hands Feedback
"I am actually still glowing from Saturday! It's only when standing back from everything that has happened over the last few months that I can begin to appreciate it's impact fully. I can honestly say that I have never been involved in something that has been so rewarding, humbling and uplifting all at the same time - it really was an amazing experience!
Everybody involved was so keen and enthusiastic, I was walking around the site completely overwhelmed at the sheer effort being expended and I was equally amazed at the quality of the workmanship and the level of detail being applied to every aspect of the work that was being undertaken."
4. Community Farm make-over: litter-picking, weeding stinging nettles around paddocks, cut overgrown hedges, paint stable, repair picnic benches and old fences
5. Garden make-over: created paths, cut over grown trees, weeded and cleared ponds.
6. Weeding, painting and planting. Litter-picking around a park. Grounds by old building not worked on since flood of 1999, grounds overgrown and railings needed paint.
7. Clear undergrowth and brambles; decorated activity room in centre.
8. Clean up community park.
9. Cleared church yard of 5 foot tall weeds for elderly congregation, cleared flower beds and paths, weed rose beds, rubbish pickup, tidied rose garden and gazebo, rejuvenated a neglected nature reserve, created outdoor area for environmental studies at nursery school.
10. washed and painted toddler's playroom ceiling, mended fencing, cleaned children's desks, washed all slides and outdoor big toys.
11. Cleared larege areas of knee-high grass, created new path, scraped and painted large buildings, re-plastered external walls and repainted the following week, painted murals, stained benches, but back foliage, cleared tennis court which was invisible, cleared large rubbish dumps, sewed cushions for a local school, stained fence, created a rockery and planted flowers, trimmed all bushes and cut back ivy from buildings, repaired broken walls with new mortar and bricks, replaced broken fence posts and installed new fence panels, created new raised flower beds, sung to patients and played violins for them.
12. Cleared overgrown church yard.
13. For recreational area: children built 40 birdhouses whilst adults put up new fences, painted old fences, cleared grazing land of Ragwort, wattle fencing created from natural materials constructed in the river to hold back relentless erosion of the river bank.
14. Clearance of pond undergrowth, plant garden, repaired and constructed fencing, reconstructed a pergola, plant sensory garden, put chicken wire on bridge surface, built potting bench with access for wheelchair-using children, cleared undergrowth, built 2 child-sized benches, lay special mesh path for wheelchair access, added a post at exit for hanging wind chimes, mobiles, etc., constructed play area in field play area, classroom painting, children's project painting canvases to hang in outdoor playhouse, mural painting.
16. Weeding around headstoness, clearing entrance to cemetery, barking around graves for easier maintenance, cutting back trees and bushes, planting, helping older people with their allotments who had fallen behind.
17. Gardening and litter picking.
18. Repaired and improved a workshop building for adults with learning disabilities, made new front and rear doors, lay a completely new first floor and new stable doors, cleaned and painted 11 pieces of playground equipment, cleared out copse and streams.
19. Sanded and sealed garden furniture, bandstand, resituated children's sand pit, prep work on school walls for later painting date, garden work at local residential care home, concreted lunch tables in a children's area, painted wall.
20. Landscape gardening, general tidying up, painted fences, cleaned and prepared charity farm for annual Open House, built fence at a country park.
21. Painting and gardening and assisted with a river project.
22. Cleared and turned over weed infested border, trimming grass on roadway.
23. Work at a school.
24. Cleared overgrown vegetation, cut down and pruned laurel bushes and trees.
25. Pruned trees and tidied to created better access for locals to enjoy walking withing a beautiful woodland area, cleared community garden.
26. Built a new bridge, lay new paths, painted farm buildings, forestry work, weeding vegetable gardens and work in fields, repaired clothes, completed craft projects.
27. Cleaned up bridges, created a wildlife garden and other embellishments at a primary school, cleaned litter at a park, made repairs at a museum, cleaned up banks of a river.
28. First date postponed due to heavy rainfall…continued working in several shifts to paint fences and clean areas.
29. Refurbish and paint benches.
30. Planted garden, packaged and loaded care equipment for local chairity sending goods to Romania, power washing and external cleaning at local primary, landscaping and general repair, gardening and landscaping, clean up of grounds.
31. Clean up, painted walls, removed stones and planted shrubs.