Here at Durbins we're proud to be dedicating our efforts to supporting local charities, organisations or schemes with our newly launched 'Durbins Charity of the Year' scheme. After a lot of thought and nominations from our followers on social media we have decided to dedicate the remainder of 2018 to Salem Chapel, a real hub to the local community and a resource that a lot of us take for granted, though they rely on donations for much of their work.
Here's a look at some of the schemes on offer at Salem;
For the youth and children:
- During the summer holidays children are welcome to attend Summershine holiday club for arts and crafts activities as well as sports. A team of Americans come over to help run it with many Salem volunteers and this year they had over 60 Primary age children attend from the community.
- Every Thursday evening Salem holds BB club, a sort of youth club for Primary and Secondary age children. Around 30 children attend from the surrounding area.
- Occasionally throughout the year there's Supercooks, a club run to teach youngsters and their families how to cook healthy meals. Usually 4-5 families sign up at a time.
- There's also Sunday School which around 15 young people attend, some of which have also joined their music group.
For older people in the community:
- Knit and natter is held every Monday and attracts about 15-20 people every week
- Soup-a-lunch is held the last Thursday in every month to bring together people in the community who may feel isolated. They meet up with some of Salem's own members for a lunch and a quiz.
Our personal favourite, the Christmas Tree Festival is held annually, where local businesses sponsor a tree (Durbins had the best one last year, according to us!) and a concert is held featuring children from the local schools. This annual event helps raise funds for the weekly activities mentioned here, to support and bring together people of all ages within our community.
In addition to these shcemes held by Salem themselves, local organisations sometimes hire the hall to hold their own classes and events, such as Ti a Fi and Hartbeeps (yoga for babies!)
An on-going project as Salem is the Community Garden project, which aims to create a sensory garden and provide a quiet space for anyone who needs it. This project has received some funding from Tesco, but there's still a lot of work to do!
From September 15th they will be launching the Shalom centre, a drop-in centre held every Saturday for people with mental health problems to have a quiet space, a cuppa and people to chat to. This will be manned by volunteers from Salem.
There are also plans to build an extension, upgrade the toilet and kitchen facilities and to upgrade the heating.
WHY WE CHOSE SALEM
While choosing our first organisation to support, we wanted to find something that would benefit as many people in the community as possible, and Salem was the perfect fit! The people there work so hard and tirelessly to help others and bring people together, and while they are hoping for funding to help with the bigger ongoing projects, the burden of funding the day-to-day activities and support of local citizens fall on them - and us as a community! We look forward to fundraising and providing all the help we can this year.