Thursday, 29 September 2011

A flurry of Rags and Muffins

We're in the middle of two Rags and Muffins at the moment- one ran in Yarm last weekend and the next one is in Middlesbrough in just over a week. So the fundraising office is currently full of clothes, shoes, price tags and posters!

Here are some of the pictures from last week to whet your appetite for Saturday 8th October:

A cup of tea of coffee for 50p? What a bargain!

Chocolate orange cupcakes from The Cupcake Pixies
At the heart of everything we do; bringing hope, freedom and wholeness to women and young people

Things are well under way at Hide Bar

Earrings from Bean Designs went down a treat!

Rummaging for the best bargains

Beth seems to be enjoying herself!
With the The Cupcake Pixies, event sponsors and Sandra from the Soroptimists

Yarm Rags and Muffins was a relaxed affair with gorgeous cupcakes, beautiful clothes and a lovely stall of home-made gifts from Bean Designs. On Saturday 8th October there will be all of this and more! Bucks Fizz reception, fashion show, dance acts, stalls from local businesses, charity cocktails.... All for a mere £5 (£3 for NUS) and all to raise money to help those most at need.

What a great way to spend a Saturday afternoon. We'll see you there!

Love from A Way Out x

Tuesday, 20 September 2011

You won't believe how easy it is to raise money for A Way Out!

This week A Way Out became a featured charity on Causeback so now you can raise money ever time you shop online and it won't cost you any extra! Internet based stores such as Amazon, Play and Ticketmaster will donate money to A Way Out with every purchase you make.

This week A Way Out became a featured charity on Causeback so now you can raise money ever time you shop online and it won't cost you any extra! Internet based stores such as Amazon, Play and Ticketmaster will donate money to A Way Out with every purchase you make.

Stores include: Amazon, Waterstones, Play, Boots, Ticketmaster, Euroffice, Clarks, Expedia, M & S, Aviva, Dell, Virgin Media, Orange, BHS. Snapfish, Sainsbury's, RAC, Boohoo, Graze, Thorntons, Republic, All Saints, Asda, George, Superdrug, All Posters, Cotswald Outdoor, Craghoppers, The National Trust, B & Q, Butlins, Boden,  and many more...

It's really easy to you and will cost you an extra 30 seconds online. Here's how to raise money from the comfort of your own home:

2. Click on the store you'd like to shop with
3. Click Continue
And you're off!

We've already raised a few pounds since Monday but we'd love to see this number rising. This money means that we can make real, tangible differences to the lives of at risk women and young people right across Teesside. Thank you so much.

Love from A Way Out x

Tuesday, 13 September 2011

It's a new look, but the same heart.

Here at A Way Out we've been having a bit of a makeover.

We've just got started and there's more to come. You'll be seeing these changes in our publicity, on our website and in our communications. It's an exciting time to be at A Way Out and we think that our new imagery matches that vibe. We still have the same big heart for the people of Teesside and we're still passionate about Reaching, Changing and Saving lives. 

This heart is a picture of what A Way Out stands for. Clients we work with come from all sorts of backgrounds and can feel exploited, abandoned, abused, rejected, angry, lonely, hopeless, lost, trapped... We want to break into their situations and mend broken hearts, bringing love, hope, freedom, joy, education, wholeness, empowerment, a sense of direction, safety... the list goes on!

We love seeing lives being completely transformed and that is something that we really do see every day! We want more and more people to hear these stories and our new look is all part of helping us get that message across.

This is our new logo and tagline that you will start seeing from now on:

What do you think about this new look? We'd love to get your feedback! Leave a comment here or on Facebook or Twitter.

Love from A Way Out x

Thursday, 8 September 2011

Guest Blogger: Adam

  Hi, my name is Adam. My actual job title is so long it could probably have a blog of it’s own, but in essence I co-ordinate, develop and deliver prevention work in A Way Out. I’ve been involved here for a few years now and it’s pretty amazing to see how it’s changed and grown and tried to cling to what is was set up for despite everything that comes with developing at such a rate.

A lot of my time is spent with young men aged 16-25 supporting them in a variety of ways. Football is popular and my shins usually bear witness to how much the lads enjoy coming! Another good session is anything involving eating together, though I’m not sure who enjoys it more – the staff or the clients.

We are also able deliver 1 to 1 support to a bunch of clients. This varies from helping clients to resolve issues in their lives, such as budgeting support or housing options; to more general befriending sessions, where we aim to simply spend positive time with the lads and be an ear to hear what’s going on. This often leads into mentoring situations where we are able to help lads reflect and make positive lifestyle choices. One such lad commented recently that he felt he was no longer a “rip-your-head-off-kinda-guy which is a massive step forward. The impact of these sessions is sometimes seen after a long period, but they always seem to make a positive difference to people. We are increasingly learning again and again the value of being committed and simply spending quality time with people.

 As well as this I am also involved with some schools work (healthy lifestyle / self-esteem sessions), some community-based work, such as a weekly community church event (which provides opportunity for people to be prayed for), and group sessions supporting young men as a group. My role is to develop this prevention work, so we are slowly but surely expanding to reach more young men that could do with some support from places such as hostels and supported living schemes. We would like to develop our work in earlier prevention with younger clients as well.

We have quality staff on our team with massive skill sets from art, music and handy man skills (and that’s just one guy) to ball sports, water sports, and outdoor adventure expertise. This is great for me as it allows us to do things with the lads that would otherwise not be possible. But the most important aspect the great team bring is that they love the guys they work with and are good at listening, reflecting and hanging out with the guys- making a clear difference to their lives.

 One of the highlights of the summer was our day trip to Richmond with the young men. We took a group of over 18s from across the young men's caseload on a trip to Richmond. Despite the weather (slightly British and wet!) we all had a great time playing rounders (skidding everywhere on wet grass and loving the opportunity to throw balls at each other) football and messing about in the river (shivering, shivering and shivering some more), as well as a cracking and slightly miraculous BBQ in the rain! The lads really seemed to enjoy themselves - even those who braved the icy river! We're looking forward to the next opportunity, perhaps an autumn day trip with the lads and staff getting back to their hunter gatherer roots!

All in all I have a great job working with great people- staff and clients alike. It’s amazing when you can see the lads benefiting from the work we deliver or knowing that they can come and see you when they need someone to talk to. It’s also great just getting to know the clients and hear their stories. The more time I spend with the lads on our case load, the more I start to wonder if we benefit just as much or more than they do.

Love from A Way Out x
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