One of our services in Folkestone provides a space for people to meet every Wednesday and share their love of baking and all things creative.

The group enables people with complex needs to participate alongside other local people and form friendships outside of their paid support.

The group plan what they are going to make in the session beforehand and everyone enjoys tasting what they have created and taking some home to their family.

A man with learning disabilities holding a tray of jam tarts he has baked with his friends at the Sunflower Bakers Club in Folkestone

One support worker noted that the parents of a woman they support ‘were visibly touched the first time she came home with biscuits she had helped to bake. The club has helped us to form a relationship with her family as it was not always easy due to language barriers.’

Making community connections

The venue is also used by other community groups including the Community Sprucers who meet at the premises on the same day. The club often share their cakes with the volunteers who come in for a chat, which has allowed a bond to be formed between the groups. One person we support has also joined them on their Clean up Folkestone campaign. The club also joined forces with the local Community Fun Day project. They had a stall selling their home-made goods to raise funds and spread the word about the group.

Volunteers involved in the club say they love coming and one said ‘my own problems seem to disappear for a while.’

Incredible benefits of club activities

Members of the group with complex needs have been able to achieve personal goals. Some have been able to stay in a group situation for sustained periods without feeling anxious or agitated which is a real success for them, whilst others who were previously very quiet, have felt able to come out of their shell more. Many have also been able to meet new friends and now have regular contact with them outside of the club.

A woman with learning disabilities and her support worker at the Sunflower Bakers Club in Folkestone

Projects like this make such a difference to the quality of life of the people we support. We rely on the continued generosity of our supporters, and we are so grateful for your kindness, because these projects simply can’t go ahead without funding. So please help to make a change today by making a donation.

Donate

Sarah Riddlestone, fundraising assistant.