Brathay is back!
Over the last month, the view from my desk has changed significantly.
Not only am I spending much more time sitting in my office in Ambleside, rather than working from home, but the view across the lawn towards the lake is filling up once again – and it’s not sheep this time, but people, and plenty of them; young people mainly, including apprentices, all happily getting on with their different outdoor activities at a safe social distance. There’s even been a few marquees recently, and, on one occasion, a digital scoreboard on the back of a lorry!
So yes: Brathay’s exciting, immersive and purposeful residential programmes and events are well and truly back and I, for one, couldn’t be happier. Not only is life at our diverse organisation starting to resemble some sort of normality, but with our B&B and holiday accommodation bookings thrown into the mix, it’s actually proving to be one of the busiest seasons ever.
We’re also getting back to full capacity out in the community. Teams are increasing delivery, in particular NCS in Calderdale, currently enjoying one of the most successful summer programmes we have had, with brilliant feedback from young people and commissioners alike. Our work in Barrow with young people supported by the Marcus Rashford campaign is great to be part of. And it was brilliant to see the social media pictures of CCP young leaders having a great time in Edinburgh on their residential module.
While we rightly celebrate the brilliant work that is going on with young people and families, apprentices, leaders and managers over the last month or so, let’s not forget the challenges is has been for everyone to overcome enforced closure and having to postpone our groups of young people with a heavy heart. But patience has paid off and already our charity is looking to be in a strong position financially, at least for the coming months.
I hope it helps all of us to feel more positive and secure about the future – not just within Brathay itself, but those at the receiving end of our charitable youth development and wellbeing programmes and all our valued fee-paying clients coming to us for professional people development.
None of it could have been achieved without the hard work and resilience of all our Brathay staff and to them I offer my heartfelt thanks.