New Year brings new hope for Wisbech Community House clients

Some of Community House's volunteers and clients with special certificates recognising their achieve

Some of Community House's volunteers and clients with special certificates recognising their achievements in 2015. - Credit: Archant

Staff, volunteers and regular clients from Wisbech’s Community House came together at the Oasis Centre just before Christmas to celebrate some of their achievements over the past year.

Community House is owned by Roddons Housing Association, funded by the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) and staffed and run by Fenland District Council.

The house, on Southwell Road, runs a range of activities aimed at families and the broader community to help them learn, explore, have fun and realise their own potential.

2015 proved to be a fruitful year for Community House’s clients, and they shared their stories of success a celebratory Christmas get-together at the Oasis Centre in Wisbech.

All client names have been changed.

“Brian had previously been a successful manager but had suffered a nervous breakdown, leading to acute anxiety. When he came for his initial appointment, he was shaking from head to toe. Over the next few weeks he popped in regularly for a cup of tea and a chat and before long he felt able to attend our social group. He had mentioned a passion for photography, so we got him to take some pictures at one of our large events. Now he volunteers regularly as our photographer and his confidence is growing daily. The change in him is immense.”

“Fred has had three heart attacks in the past five years, as well as a stroke that left him with facial palsy and very poor speech and memory. We have been having regular conversations with him to help regain his speech, as well as playing memory games. His facial palsy has significantly reduced and his speech and memory have also improved greatly. He has told us that we have helped him more than any of the healthcare professionals that he has seen.”

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“Donna was in a very controlling relationship which made her confidence plummet; she was also having difficulties at work. To make matters worse, last year she suffered the emotional trauma of losing her triplets. When we first met her she could not make eye contact with anyone and did not want to join in any activities. She has since done two confidence courses and left her controlling partner. She has blossomed and we have recently been able to get her on to a new career path. Her self-belief is growing every day and she is smiling again.”

“Gary was initially very timid; he tended to hide behind his long hair or under the hood of his jumper, and it was hard to get a word out of him. He was referred to the confidence course that we help to run, and we have watched him grow into the bold, confident individual that he is fast becoming. His appearance has also changed drastically. He has cut his hair short and is clean shaven and smartly dressed. He has been for several interviews and says he now feels he has a vision for the future.”

“Andrew had been struggling to find work after being laid off from his job due to staff cuts. He didn’t have a CV and had very little interview experience. We helped him draw up his CV and invited him to an interview skills workshop. Subsequently we put him in touch with a local company, who took him on full-time. He is still working for them but has transferred to a different site where he is training in various new skills.”