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Annual Review 2011-12



from the Chair of Trustees and Chief Executive


Romsey Mill’s vision is of a transformed society where all young people, children and families fully belong, positively contribute and thrive. Romsey Mill creates opportunities with young people, children and families in Cambridge and South Cambridgeshire to overcome disadvantage, promote inclusion, and develop personal, social and spiritual well being.

Every year is memorable for Romsey Mill and 2011-12 was no exception. From its beginnings, established by local churches in 1980, Romsey Mill has been a charitable organisation eager to learn and develop, always seeking to respond with care, creativity and proficiency to the needs of people in Cambridgeshire. The Christian faith remains an active and important motivation for what we do; an inner characteristic or strand running through our work as we engage with people of all faiths and none. Experience of God’s grace and love motivates us to show compassion and seek justice, which comes into particular focus in our support for vulnerable young people, children and families locally – those with the least economic and social power. There are other diverse and complementary strands to our work including the range of flexible programmes and activities developed with participants; the whole-life approach we take in supporting and enabling people to thrive; the long-term relational commitment we make to the young people and families; the positive partnership of numerous organisations and individuals contributing their skills and experience. Brought together these different strands provide strength, enabling us to achieve more. In 2011/12, through these strands coming together, Romsey Mill continued to create many opportunities with young people, children and families to cultivate resilience, new skills, joy and hope. This review shines a light on some of them including the growth of our work supporting young people with autistic spectrum conditions; new work in additional schools through our Transitions and Alternative Education Programmes, outstanding early years activities for children and their families, many positive endeavours for young people with our Social Inclusion team. The year also held specific challenges for Romsey Mill. Like many charities, we

were adversely affected by wider economic problems. Whilst we anticipated and were able to manage our end-of-year financial short-fall, we need income to grow during 2012 and beyond if aspects of our work aren’t to be lost. We are hopeful that as local authorities consider commissioning services they will recognise the excellent programmes and value for money that Romsey Mill offers by awarding us contracts to deliver services. However, much of what we do cannot be funded by local authorities. It is the support we receive from the community that enables Romsey Mill to work in our flexible and distinctive way. We are ever grateful for this giving. In the year ahead Romsey Mill shall continue to be active but with an even stronger emphasis on impact; we’ll continue to strive to help as many people as we can, but our core concern is significant change – full & lasting. Thank you to our volunteers, funders, supporters and staff for coming together to make a decisive difference. Please continue to do so as we give our utmost to set in motion true transformation for a fairer, more compassionate, society.


Alternative Education

Alternative Education Mainstream school doesn’t work for everyone. Our Alternative Education Programme helps 14-16 year olds, struggling with school, to achieve.

The attainm ent gap in Cambridge shire betw een those eligib le for free s chool meals and those not is the widest in the East of England . www.educa



Through a range of vocational courses, young people relearn what success feels like – which often spills over into their school life too. Learners leave the programme with qualifications and with access to Romsey Mill’s support for the next stage of their training and education. 5

Alternative Education

Highlights Thirty young people engaged with learning, skills-development and assessment, re-starting them on a route towards training and work. It’s likely that many would otherwise have dropped out of the education system. Additional Cambridge schools recognised the effectiveness of the programme and bought our services, so that more young people were able to achieve success through our vocational courses. Students became increasingly engaged with social issues through Personal Social Development sessions, leading to active campaigning. Young people successfully met physical and mental challenges through outdoor pursuits courses, as well as learning about living together in a community setting and working as a team.

Work fo rab that cares usiness a the comm bout unity? Speak to C harity on 01223 5664 92 about corporate p artnerships 6

Contact Mike Farrington 01223 566192 7

Social Inclusion Programme

Social Inclusion Programme Every young person has potential to achieve, but without positive influences and support it’s easy to go off track and lose direction.

Aspiration and achiev ement are the mo st importa nt things for e nsuring yo ung people gro w up to rea lise their full p otential. www.public



Our Social Inclusion Programme workers support young people aged 13-25 to gain social and personal skills through activities like football, music and art and through building positive relationships. Our youth work team meet young people in a variety of settings including through street-based outreach. 9

Social Inclusion Programme

Highlights A summer programme gave young people positive and creative outlets, including a graffiti arts course and a youth-led café. These, and other activities, were underpinned by outreach, so that new young people engaged with Romsey Mill’s provision. Positive activities, including late-night football and boxing groups, gave young people the chance to develop skills and aspirations as well as diverting them from crime. They were given time and guidance to reflect on their lives and to make progress in jobs and relationships. Outdoor challenges gave young people a taste of success – meeting and overcoming what might have seemed impossible. Work expanded in Cambourne with football, a weekly drop-in club and music sessions in a new studio. A new project in north Cambridge started with outreach, drop-in clubs and football projects attracting 20-30

Contact Jackson Nazombe 01223 566192

young people each session.

Help you ng peopl e develop skills through a one-of f gift Go to www.romse nate or ring 012 23 566492 10 11

Young Parents Programme

Young Parents Programme Parenting at any age is challenging and for those with the added element of being young, our Young Parents Programme offers a safe haven of acceptance and support for young mums and dads.

Women fro m vulnera ble groups are less likely to access ante natal servic es – leading to increased r isk to them an d their bab y . ww w.maternalan



From tailored antenatal classes to peer support groups and accredited courses, the programme offers parents and their children a chance to create patterns of living and working that will give the whole family a positive future in health, well being and education. 13

Young Parents Programme

Highlights Learners achieved 26 Level 1 and 2 qualifications in Maths and in ‘Shine’: a self-confidence course. The Progressions Worker supported them to move on to further training or work. The Young Fathers Worker supported five men to take legal advice and begin the process of gaining access to their children. Five dads also completed a baby care course to grow their skills and equip them for practical care. Young mums took a two-day break in Norfolk enjoying seal-watching, pampering and time to talk. Friendship networks nurtured through the programme helped young parents to cope more effectively with challenges they face. Funding from Children’s Centres in Cambridge City and South Cambridgeshire allowed us to develop work throughout South Cambridgeshire. A four-year grant from the Esmée Fairbairn Foundation will enable young fathers work to grow in reach and influence.

Contact Rachel Briant 01223 566021

Change l ives thro ugh a regula r donati on Go to www.romse nate or ring 012 23 566492 14


Working Together

We’re Mills and Reeve’s Charity of the Year

“I volun teer at a n Aspire All the g club. irls talk about experien cing bull ying, misund erstand in g and is We’ve ju olation. st been fo r our en term trip d-of, two ho urs in a pod. I w K araoke ill never forget th momen e t they st ood wit arms ro h their und eac h o t her sing Bruno M ing ars’ ‘I th in k you’re amazing , just th e way y to each ou are’ other.”

Rob ran the London Marathon 16

ill gives “Romsey M and al support inspiration turn that helps leadership ’s lives. ung people around yo tions t my dona I know tha vest y Mill to in se m o R w o all , where as of work in new are ssed.“ t yet addre need is no Tim Phipps,

Grace baked for a cake sale

“It has been rew arding to see th e enthusiasm our colleagues have for working with Romsey Mill. This is testamen t both to the great work they do, and to the fact that our ed ucational aims have so much in common.” Peter Phillips, CEO Cambridge University Press, Corporate Partner


regular dono

Cambridge University Press hosted Alternative Education students


AAn Busy Year… Active and ...supported by people like you who made possible ourChallenging work with over 2100 people,Year helping them to combat isolation and to develop skills, hopes and Dummy copy.Working in partnership with other aspirations. The figures below show some of the agencies ensured that Tom and Janet received the needs address. bestwe possible support throughout. Shortly after

1,000,000+ 1% and Romsey Mill staff supported them to develop his child’s birth, Tom and Janet moved into a flat

Over one million 16-24-year-olds About 1% of the budgeting and parenting skills. Tom is an involved nationally are unemployed. population has an father and supportive partner and, with improved autistic spectrum condition. Over 50% confidence skills is actively job seeking. of parents would like their child with of children in Cambridge an ASC to be better live in families relying on out-of-work supported at school. benefits children were young people were young people living in poverty unemployed, an received their increase of 35% schooling at a on 2009 Referral Unit of GCSE students in CambridgeshirePupil eligible for free

17% 15,000




school meals achieved 5 GCSE A*- C passes, in contrast to 62% of non-eligible students who achieved this. children (approx) school pupils of families with had autistic were eligible for children under 5 conditions free school meals in our Children’s of unemployed young people nationally aged 16-18 Centre area were are pregnant or have children, leading to poorer educational and living in poverty health outcomes for parents and children.





Alternative TransitionsEducation Programme

30 156

students 11 year accessed olds our Alternative successfully Education courses, transferred to achieving 73 secondary school qualifications after intensive support


95% 274

attendance 11-14 yearrate olds was werachieved helped to bymake students friends and attake Alternative advantage of Education sessions learning opportuities at school

73% 105

ofyoung Alternative people Education students enjoyed outdoor made a successful activities on transition to work or residentials college

April 2011



Alternative Education students complete a 4-day outdoor residential in Wales, learning skills and meeting challenges successfully

Alternative Education students taking an Enterprise module make chocolate at the Hotel Chocolat factory in Huntingdon

30 students attend the Alternative Education graduation evening receiving 73 qualifications between them 27 young mums and dads and their children visit Shepreth Wildlife Park, enjoying family time and learning about accessing local facilities

Sales of Ready to Go (transitions resource for 10-year-olds) hit £5,500. Copies have been distributed throughout the UK 5 young people with autistic spectrum conditions complete a Life Skills course, helping to equip them for independent living Cambridge University Press confirm Romsey Mill as their nominated charity partner

Seven young mums take a trip to a local library to look at the facilities available and to explore reading with their children

Activities for Aspire young people and their families give fun and respite during the holidays


134 sessions preparing 11-year-olds for secondary school are delivered by Transitions staff

Sponsored ‘bean growing challenge’ in Playgroup raises £103 for IT software and games

Young people from the Transitions Programme join the ChYpPs boat for a day on the Cam, learning teamwork and confidence

August Ten young mums achieve Numeracy qualifications at Levels 1 and 2

Young women take part in a social action event with Cambridge Act for Justice to raise awareness of human trafficking

Members of a Transitions Girls’ Group run in the Race for Life

Young mum, Krysanne, raises £170 by doing a 200-foot bungee jump for Romsey Mill

Social Programme Aspire Inclusion Programme

340 56

at-risk people young people young engaged with Romsey regularly transferred Mill through to secondary streetschool based outreach, after intensive positive activities and support mentoring

220 168

youngmembers people family acquired accessed social and personal skills transferred to secondary

Children’s Centre staff run picnics in the park, parachute play and visit the Botanic Gardens with families

55 25

young people committed moved into work or volunteers training including 5 successfully young fathers transferred to

secondary school

Young Parents Programme Transitions Programme

199 320

young mothers young parentsand 76successfully young fathers were supported transferred to through groups and secondary school one-to-one after intensive support

70 67

expectant young young fathers parents prepared for successfully parenthood through transferred to tailored antenatal secondary courses

19 51

young mums qualifications achieved 26 were achieved qualifications transferred to

secondary school after intensive support 19



82 young people make a successful transition to secondary school, supported by Transitions Programme staff

Dragons’ Den event sees 3 young women successfully pitching for a grant to identify young women’s needs and to resource a response

New Hills Road Sixth Form students start volunteering in Aspire clubs Children’s Centre holds a Saturday morning Dads’ Event for 23 dads and 27 children – lots of bacon butties are made and eaten

October Soul Studio opens in Cambourne for music projects - young people help with painting and preparing it for use Third annual Young Parents Programme Health Fair is held at Romsey Mill, with 12 agencies offering advice on health-related issues Transitions team works with Beyond Belief mission, engaging young people in positive activities around Cambridge Ashleigh Calver, former Aspire volunteer, climbs Kilimanjaro, raising £525 Staff, trustees and supporters gather for annual thanksgiving service

Aspire Programme Social Inclusion Programme

55 539

young people young people attended successfully Aspire clubs, growing in transferred confidence and social skills


14 77

parents were guided young people through achievedthe process of gaining appropriate transferred to educational provision secondary school and benefits after intensivefor their children support by our Family Support Worker


Four young fathers complete a New Baby Care course increasing their skills and confidence Two new Aspire groups start in north Cambridge after a public online vote wins us a NatWest Community Force grant Ten Children’s Centre families complete a Raising Toddlers course

Worldpay ‘Apprentice Challenge’ raises £1,923 for Romsey Mill’s work

January 2012 Transitions Programme staff work with Cambridge University Press on developing Ready to Go as an e-resource Three-year Children in Need funding granted - we restart Social Inclusion Programme in north Cambridge Playgroup survey - 100% of parents gave Playgroup highest ratings across the board

December Alternative Education students prepare and host Christmas dinners for seventy-five guests: teachers, Romsey Mill staff and volunteers

of 11-14-year-olds families were to supported transferredthrough to our Transitions secondary school Programme after intensive successfully support engaged with secondary school

March Kickstart course for eight young men, including five fathers, re-engages them with learning and raises aspirations – all eight move on to training or work

Mills and Reeve choose Romsey Mill as their Charity of the Year for 2012-13

Transitions Programme Romsey Children’s Centre

94% 1109

Vodafone funding allows Karen Hosking to begin paid employment as Family Support Worker for Aspire families

Playgroup receives ‘outstanding’ from Ofsted and Children’s Centre ‘good with outstanding features’

200 helium balloons are inflated and handed out along Mill Road by Children’s Centre staff in red hoodies and Santa hats at the Mill Road Winter Fair

new people groups started young in north Cambridge successfully with 12 members, transferred to extendingschool provision secondary beyond Romsey Mill Centre

Four-year funding from Esmée Fairbairn Foundation secures the development of young fathers work

Rob Payne, former volunteer, chooses Aspire to support in his London Marathon run

Shout Aloud choir (run in partnership with Transitions Programme) perform at the Mill Road Winter Fair

2 289

Alternative Education students take Level 1 Arts Award, creating fantastic landscape and portrait paintings, later exhibited at Cambridge Arts Salon

15 145

primarycame schools families and 4 secondary successfully schools received transferred our support for young people to engage successfully with education


educationists were trained in using Ready to Go, to prepare young people for their move to secondary school

Childrens’ Centre and Playgroup Playgroup

81 78

children increased children benefitted skills through being successfully in Playgroup, transferred to including 12 highsecondary need 2-year-olds


families came to Children’s Centre activities, reducing isolation and receiving support from staff


parents acquired new parenting skills through the Raising Toddlers course


Aspire Programme

Aspire Programme Friendship should be part of life but young people with an autistic spectrum condition (ASC) often find themselves isolated. Negotiating the noise, busy-ness and expectations of school and other social situations can be unbearable.

Contact Rachel Briant 01223 566021

Use your time to makOevear d fference of childrie nw


ith a uetaiskm Sp to h Da iavnee b eoeunt ab bu vll oie ludntee at srcin hogol on

Aspire runs activities for young people with ASCs who find that at Aspire, for the first time, they have friends and their experience of life is valued and validated. Aspire staff mediate with schools, prepare young people for transition and offer muchneeded support to families.


3 566492 www.a2u2 .uk

22 23

Aspire Programme

Highlights Two new groups started in north Cambridge, extending this much needed provision beyond Romsey Mill Centre. Avril, Centre for Youth Ministry student, led this work, which includes our first girlsonly group in Aspire. Karen Hosking’s work supporting Aspire parents was officially recognised with a four-month Vodafone grant. Karen supported parents through the many challenges of getting the best opportunities for their children, who have autistic spectrum conditions. Ruth (Coordinator) completed Common Assessment Framework forms for many Aspire young people. This huge task helped secure funding as well as recording the needs of the young people, opening the way to better support for them. Weekly groups are consistently described as ‘a lifeline’ by families and as the ‘only place where I can be myself’ by young people.

Contact Ruth Watt 01223 521270


www.twitte eymill www.faceb mseymill www.romse wsletter 24


Transitions Programme

Transitions Programme Change is exciting but can be hard, even for confident children. For children struggling with low self-esteem and perhaps a difficult home life, the challenge of moving up to secondary school can seem impossible.

Young peo ple’s perso nal and social developme nt has a signifi cant impac t on their ac hievement www.public

Our team work with small groups of 11-year-olds to prepare them for this transition. We then offer support (in groups and one-toone) from the start of secondary school until age 14, to help them make the most of their time at school.

ations.parlia 26


Transitions Programme

Highlights Sales of Ready to Go increased following its redesign. We partnered with Cambridge University Press to develop an interactive Smart board version of the resource. A survey of Cambridge primary schools showed our support to be vital for vulnerable year 6 children. Post transfer support enabled at-risk young people to engage successfully with education and make a positive contribution to the school community. Transitions support was developed in new schools including Comberton Village College and one of its feeder primary schools in Cambourne, expanding the reach of this work. The Transitions Team delivered Ready to Go training to youth workers and other professionals from East Anglia and to over 100 PGCE students at Homerton College, Cambridge.

Contact Naomi Message and Mary Simuyandi 01223 566392

Belong t a churcho ? We’d lov e you to get invo lved Speak to D iane on 01223 5 66492

28 29

Children’s Centre & Playgroup

Children’s Centre and Playgroup Children are a great gift, but along with delight and laughter they bring exhaustion, worries and feelings of isolation.



live in our C hildren’s Ce ntre reach area, which inclu des areas of hig h-level nee d.

Romsey Children’s Centre promotes well being, healthy living and effective parenting through groups, activities and individual support with parents, carers and children under-5. And Romsey Mill’s Playgroup provides outstanding Early Years education and levels of support to families concerned to give their children the best opportunities they can. 30


Children’s Centre & Playgroup

Highlights Ofsted inspectors rated Playgroup as ‘outstanding’ and the Children’s Centre as ‘good with outstanding features’. Inspectors recognised the depth of care extended to children and families and excellent educational provision. Parenting courses equipped parents of toddlers with new strategies and confidence in bringing up their children. Popular Saturday dads’ events gave men the chance to share childcare experiences with peers, play with their children and eat bacon butties. Other events supported childminders and home-based carers. Playgroup staff supported a new cohort to settle at the start of the year and made sure that they moved on to excellent nursery provision or school at the end. One-to-one support helped children with special needs make the most of

Contact Cat Mackenzie or Rachel Matthews 01223 566102


Use your time to make a d ifference Speak to D

iane about volunteerin g on 01223 5 66492 32



Thank you

1st April 2011 – 31st March 2012 In a difficult year for the economy we are grateful to God for His provision, and to many generous supporters (see facing page), without whom our work would not be possible. Total income within the year was £882,755 and expenditure £973,418.

Everything you have read about in this booklet has been possible thanks to support from a wide variety of individuals and organisations. So THANK YOU, to all the individuals, community groups, churches, schools and colleges who gave money, time and skills to the work of Romsey Mill, and to the following:

We had forecast and prepared for the deficit by building up free reserves of £347,412 and a designated Social Inclusion Sustainability Fund of £151,000, with a view to spending some of them this year. From a modest level in 2010-11, our income from the community and from grantmaking trusts has doubled over the last twelve months. This welcome trend needs to continue if we are to sustain and develop our services whilst statutory funding, which still provides over half of our income, is likely to further decline. Expenditure

Social enterprise** 8% Governance & generating funds 12%

Individuals 5% Other community*** 3% Businesses 2%

NHS Nursery Milk Scheme

Batterson-Chivers Foundation

Paul Hamlyn Foundation

BBC Children in Need

Porticus UK

Betty Lawes Foundation

Prince’s Trust

Cambourne Youth Partnership

Reed Foundation

Cambridge Central Aid Society


Cambridge City Council

South Cambridgeshire District Council

Cambridge United Charities

Tesco Charity Trust

Cambridge University Press

Vodafone Foundation

Cambridgeshire Community Foundation

Waitrose Community Matters

Cambridgeshire Constabulary


Cambridgeshire County Council

Young Lives Young Localism Dragons’ Den Fund

Care to Learn

Statutory grants and contracts 54% Grant-making trusts 17%

NatWest Community Force

Baily Thomas Charitable Fund

Charitable activities 88%

Church Schools of Cambridge

We should also like to thank our Trustees:

Clore Duffield Foundation

Alastair Barry

Cottenham Village College

Margaret Ingram (Vice-chair until October 2011)

Department of Health – Cabinet Office

Stephen Leeke

Eastern Counties Educational Trust Ltd

Tim Phipps (Vice-chair from October 2011)

Ebyon Trust

Marion Saunders

Ecan Services Ltd

Vera Schuster Beesley

Ely Diocesan Cambridge Female Welfare Fund

Stewart Taylor

Esmée Fairbairn Foundation

Eleanor Willis

Lloyds TSB Foundation for England and Wales

Malcolm Wylie (Chair)

Photographs are used with permission and do not necessarily reflect the neighbouring text. Some names have been changed, to preserve anonymity.

Payment for charitable services* 11% * including Playgroup fees and contracts with schools ** including charity shop, room hire and investments *** including churches, community groups and events


Romsey Mill’s full audited accounts are available on the Charity Commission website (RCN 1069905), or on request from Romsey Mill.



Autistic Support Trust

Romsey Mill


Hemingford Road Cambridge CB1 3BZ

The Rt Revd Stephen Conway, Bishop of Ely

t 01223 213162 f 01223 411707 e Registered Charity (No: 1069905) Limited company registered in England and Wales (No: 3556721)

HM Lord Lieutenant of Cambridgeshire Hugh Duberley CBE Colin Greenhalgh CBE DL Lady Wilson of Dinton

Profile for Angela  Taylor

Stronger together  

Romsey Mill's annual review 2011-12

Stronger together  

Romsey Mill's annual review 2011-12


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