Visit to Witham Lodge Life House on 15th June
Norman Prime, Chair of Com/Voc and Pat Lowe, Committee Member, visited The Witham Lodge Life House in Skegness. This was to present a cheque to the group of Hope Volunteers who undertake work for the local community, e.g. Gibraltar Point and The Eco Centre.
Witham Lodge, Skegness, is making a real difference to the lives of both residents and local people with its innovative Hope Project, giving opportunity for their residents to volunteer and actively engage in the life of the community. The group helps old and vulnerable| people and other charitable organisations in the Skegness area with decorating, gardening and a number of environmental projects. The Lifehouse is highly regarded by Lincolnshire County Council Supporting People Team, who have A graded the service for its quality and positive outcomes for residents.
Hope Volunteers are eager to help vulnerable people in the community with any painting or gardening jobs. This includes any other organisations already set up that need our help. All potential jobs are risk assessed and a small charge to cover petrol costs for gardening projects may be asked for. The Manager of Witham Lodge, George Hocking, said that this voluntary work can often lead to paid permanent jobs as it is included in an application.
Whilst we were at Witham Lodge, we saw a Pagoda in the garden that was building by the Hope Volunteers, and this is used as a seating and smoking area. There were a few residents sitting in this area and they were all friendly and polite. Witham Lodge often gets a bad press in Skegness, but the Manager, said a lot of the problems were caused by the 20+ homeless adults in the town, who do not live at the Life House.
We were delighted to see the Chickens at the bottom of the garden. There are 7 in total and they have been there for over a year. They are currently laying 1 egg a day each and the eggs are shared fairly amongst the residents.
George said he felt the chickens had a calming influence on the 45 residents currently living at Witham Lodge. There are more Life Houses in Skegness, on Lumley Avenue and St Andrews Drive.
The only criteria is that a prospective resident has to have a connection to Skegness or East Lindsey, and are in receipt of benefits,.
Witham Lodge work closely with Adult Social Care and The Storehouse. A very worthy cause.