The Mix Stowmarket: Annual 2022

Page 1

Cover illustration by Joel Millerchip


Annual 01449 745130

Hey! Welcome to The Mix Annual. Within these pages,

you will find what The Mix can do to support you, your family and your community. We hope you like it. Get in touch if you have any questions.

We see a future in which every young person from any background can thrive and grow to become their best selves. A future in which young people become change makers, with clear confident voices that are heard above the noise, exercising both their rights and responsibilities to build a better world.

OUR PROMISES: To see you.

To believe in you.

To hear you.

To walk with you.

CONTENTS 08 10 12 14 20 26 28 32 34

Drop In Holiday Programme Detached Project Together Project Diadem Schools Work Thrive Greenlights Coaching

36 38 42 44 46 50 52 54 58

Like the design you see in this book? Get in touch with the BRIX Team! 01449 745130

Crucial Crew Arts at The Mix Volunteering Leadership Partnerships Youth Work Academy IAGS Support Us Commercial

A MESSAGE from our Youth Work Director, Sam Petersen.

It is my pleasure to

welcome you to this latest edition of The Mix Annual. Our hope is that this Annual will help to

bring to life many of the

programmes and activities we provide as a local

charity for young people. I am very proud to be part of such a talented and creative team. You will see that The Mix ‘team’ is made up of an ever-widening circle of passionate people within our community - youth workers, staff who enable our vision through a variety of other roles, teachers, volunteers, local businesses - all with the common goal of working for the best of the young people within our community. The Mix offers a wide range of programmes and activities. Some of these are universal and what you will often see referred to as ‘open access’ – they are open to all and focussed around building

and harnessing community. One of the

in the hope that it may benefit or inspire

greatest compliments we can receive is

someone else.

when a young person refers to us as a second home! Other programmes we offer are more targeted around a specific

Stories are a continual source of motivation, inspiration and challenge for us and we

need, goal or issue.

hope they will inspire you too, perhaps

Whilst we are fortunate to have a

volunteering or partnering with us.

fantastic building as our base where we deliver many of our programmes, we are also committed to being visible in the community and to meet young people, where young people are. We are delighted to be providing our services within local Primary and Secondary Schools. We also deliver our youth work out into the community

to come along, or even to consider

If we haven’t already, we would love to meet you. It is a sad reality that young people are often saddled with unrealistic expectations, pressures and a lack of hope or self-worth. We hope you will join us in our mission to get alongside

young people, to be a source of support,

through our Detached team.

compassion, encouragement and

In amongst the information about the

be an ever-present voice that says, we

programmes we offer, you will also find

inspiration. To champion them and to

believe in you and we are here for you.

stories of some of the young people we have worked with. We want to recognise the courage of these young people who have chosen to share part of their story


Crucial Crew (p.36) Drop In + Holiday Programme (p.08) Arts (p.38) Detached (p.12)



Coaching + Mentoring (p.34) Information/Advice/Guidance + Crisis Support (p.52) Schools (p.26) Groups Thrive (p.28)

All stages of a young person’s life are important to us.

Together Project (p.14)




Drop In is our name for “youth club”. A regular space for young people to hang out, meet new friends, have fun and belong.

Contact information:

mixstowmarket 01449 745130


“I never knew it would be possible for a place to feel like home after 10 minutes of being somewhere!” Young Person

Come in, hang out and have some fun! For anyone who isn’t sure what we

are on about, Drop In is essentially

our version of a youth club. Drop In

runs every week and is a great way of meeting new friends and finding new

passions… and it is totally free! Drop In is your space. Drop-ins are reliant on our team of amazing volunteers. If you would like to get involved go to page:


“ I feel safe at The Mix” Young Person

Whether you want to chill and chat with your friends, play computer games or do something more active or creative, we aim to provide a space for you to just be you. Drop In takes place in our youth hall which has everything you need. There are comfy sofas, games, computers, pool, table tennis, air hockey, and sometimes you can even use our recording studio. Our team of youth workers are there to support you, whether you are in the mood for a quiet bit of nail painting or if you want help arranging a massive game of dodgeball! And if it hasn’t been your day, our team are also trained and equipped to talk you through any issues, questions, challenges or worries you might be facing.



Our Holiday Programme includes a variety of activities and experiences for young people to have fun and develop new interests.

Contact information:

mixstowmarket 01449 745130


The school holidays can be a time of

new experiences, fun and adventure.

We know it can also feel like a time of

Holiday Activities and Food programme (HAF)

stagnation, boredom and loneliness.

We are proud to be a provider of the

At The Mix, we aim to provide a variety

This enables us to offer free holiday

of activities that bring people together

activities for young people entitled to

and encourage them to develop new

Free School Meals, which includes a

interests. We look to provide progressive

tasty and nutritious meal provided by our

opportunities so that young people can

café, Cabbages & Kings.

stretch themselves more as they become more familiar with us and develop their confidence.

government-funded HAF programme.

Keep an eye on our social media for updates on what’s coming up.

We regularly ask young people what they would like us to offer. Our past activities have included trips to the zoo and the beach, garden parties, climbing, dodgeball, golf, inflatables, residentials, survival nights and camping in The Mix (yep you heard it right, camping in The Mix!)

“ It’s very important that children have activities to do during the holidays. I can only go back to my own experiences and what I would have been doing if I didn’t have places my friends and I could go in a safe environment.” Marcus Rashford



Our Detached team head out into the community to get to know young people, where they are. We are there to help in any way we can and often have a free snack or drink to offer.

Contact information:

mixstowmarket 01449 745130


Our Detached work is our way of

reducing the barriers that prevent young people from accessing the

support and information they want and need.

Whether you just want to grab a drink or snack (yes, we bring snacks), have a chat about your day, or find out a bit more about The Mix, we are always happy to stop and talk, whatever the weather!

We understand that not all young people

If you feel unsafe, are worried

are able to come to our building-based

about something, or just want some

activities. Through our Detached work

reassurance, we want to be there for you.

and events, we can engage with young people who may not otherwise get the

If you want to organise an event or

help and support they need.

have an idea for your town, then let us

Friday Night Project

from your town and help you to make it

Every Friday evening, a group of Mix youth workers head out to the streets of Stowmarket and Needham Market, visiting places such as the Rec, town centre and Cedars Park (Stowmarket) and Crowley Park and High Street (Needham Market).

know! We want to know what you want happen! Our youth workers are easily recognisable in their Mix logo raincoats or t-shirts, so come and say hello next time you see us!



Our Together Project supports young people aged 15-24 who are looking to take their next step into employment, education or training.

Contact information:

mixstowmarket 01449 745130


Our Together Project delivers a Life Skills and Personal Development programme that is tailored to the individual.

It is open to every young person aged 15-24 wanting to progress with their next step. After filling out our online sign-up form,

you will be invited to an initial meeting with one of our youth workers. In this meeting,

we will aim to get to know you a little better and together decide how we can support you with your next step.

Our programme includes 1:1 coaching

and a variety of workshops and groups

designed to help you understand yourself and build confidence, motivation and resilience.

new. For those young people, we offer a number of open-access workshops and groups, such as our Job Squad. This is a space where you can get support from one of our youth workers with anything job related, whether you are signed up to our programme or not. The Together Project is built on the idea of partnership, and we could not do what we do without the involvement of our brilliant business partners. We always try to work collaboratively with employers, schools and other providers to ensure every young person gets the best support possible. We have a range of partners who are willing to go the extra mile to help young people and invest in their future. These partners support us by planning and running workshops to up-skill and inspire those on our programme, offering work

Our 1:1 coaching underpins the

experience, career mentoring, sharing

and consistent support so that you not


programme. We want to offer you constant only gain employment, education or

training, but are able to sustain it too. We understand that some young people may not want or need 1:1 support and, instead, may only need a one-off session to help them with applying for something

job vacancies and assisting with mock

Our project has been designed with feedback from both local employers and young people to make sure it is relevant and engaging.

Y O U N G P E R S O N ’ S S T O RY

When I started seeing my youth worker last year, I was a mess mentally and emotionally.

I had recently left my first job after

day miserable, feeling hopeless and that

a meeting in which I was told, ‘your

nothing I did was good enough, but I kept

emotional behaviour right now makes

pushing through telling myself, ‘you have

us think you are not stable to be in

to do this.’ I had a panic attack at work,

employment’.This meeting was the last

walking out. My boss was understanding

push that sent me off the edge.

until my next shift when I had another panic attack and never made it in, going

back to my doctor being signed off again I couldn’t stop crying, I felt like I was drowning, kicking my legs so hard and losing my job in the process. to keep my head above water and And I was drowning again. gasping for breath. This is when I joined The Together

That day was the day I got put on medication and it worked! Within a few months I was no longer off sick, I had handed my resignation in never having to

Project. At first, I hated it, but I needed that time. It was hard pushing myself little by little out into the world, leaving the house by myself. It happened so slowly

go back there and I started a new job.

that I didn’t notice how well I was doing

Everything was great, and then it wasn’t.

with a cup of tea when I realised, I could

I started coming home from work every

and then I was sat in the cafe alone never do this before. Yes, my anxiety was still there but my youth worker had given me the tools I needed to cope and

allow the waves of anxiety to come and

give support when life gets too much, and

go, knowing I could get through it. That

I forget how.

moment is the proudest day of my life and I know that without The Mix, this moment never would have happened. I would still be kicking my legs so hard, trying to keep my head above the water. But I’m not. The day I started my work with The Together Project, I was not alone.

They jumped in the water, gave me a float and helped me to swim. They gave me the tools I need to swim on my own and are still there ready to

At the moment the water is rough, I’m finding it hard to swim. But they are still here, providing the support I need. I am honestly so grateful for the support The Together Project provides me and others, without this I don’t know where I’d be today.


jobs or apprenticeships gained in 2021!


kickstart placements


local businesses and organisations partnered with!

I decided to leave my university course which left me feeling guilty - because I seemed to have disappointed more people than I expected, and lost - because the


Y O U N G P E R S O N ’ S S T O RY


direction I had been set on for a long time in school was suddenly not what I wanted anymore. This confusion, isolation and panic led

form I was still unsure of what would

me to look for help. I was overwhelmed

follow but when I had my first meeting, it

because I had no idea what to do next.

turned out to be exactly what I needed.

Someone suggested I speak to The Mix. I

Since coming to The Mix, I have learnt

was unsure of what to expect from walking

lots about myself. There is a voice of

through the doors - I don’t think I had even

reason that now exists in my head when

been in the building before then. I briefly

I have doubts. I have a better sense of

explained why I was there and was given

self - I can look at things with a clearer

a form to complete, the lady was very

differentiation between what I really want

positive and told me about her nephew

for myself and what I want because it

who had done something similar a few

would please other people, with the

years before which was encouraging and

knowledge that there is always someone

made me feel comfortable.

on my side and that there always can be.

After feeling out of place both at university and since leaving, standing in The Mix, I felt like I was in the right place for something. Once I had completed the

I don’t assume the opposite.



Diadem is a group for girls to help improve their confidence, self-worth, mental health, relationships, body image and all of the other tricky bits of being a teen.

Contact information:

mixstowmarket 01449 745130


Diadem, a jewelled crown, a royal headband.

Our course is named ‘Diadem’ as we believe it sums up the immeasurable worth we see in every young woman that takes part in the course. We want them to feel they are worthy and regal, and through the course, recognise their worth

reassuring you that you are not alone. Through the use of games, activities

and guided discussion, Diadem will give you the space to explore and develop

your thoughts on healthy friendships and relationships, body image, social media, self-worth and your future aspirations.

and potential.

This is guaranteed to be a fun-filled

Over the course of six 2-hour sessions,

new friendships that can support you

our friendly and experienced youth

workers will support you to talk about a wide variety of topics that affect young

experience with the potential to create beyond the group sessions. We can’t wait to meet you and be part of your journey!

women today.

P.S. did we tell you there’s always

Diadem offers support in a group setting

complete our course?!

and provides the opportunity for you to share your own wisdom, all the while

goody bags for the young women who

Y O U N G P E R S O N ’ S S T O RY

When I drew this picture, I wanted to

show how far I had come and what has changed for me during my time at The

how to manage the negative feelings that were so controlling and I now take care of myself much better. I’m finding myself

Mix. At the beginning I struggled with a

happier, going to school and enjoying

lot of things, I didn’t feel happy, I was

the things I love again, even performing

confused, lonely and trapped. I didn’t enjoy going to school or the hobbies I had previously loved. With a lot of support, I learned how to take care of myself and share my

feelings with others. I have learned

in a local drama production! I’m finding

the confidence to be myself and to be

proud of who I am.

Young Person

Diadem self-care gift bags kindly donated by local businesses and funders.


“ I have found this course so useful, it made a positive influence on me everyday. I have learnt to accept myself and I would like to try and be more confident and leave all my negativity behind. I would recommend this course to my friends, I wouldn’t change the course at all, it was great and very friendly. ”


Y O U N G P E R S O N ’ S S T O RY

I came to Diadem after my teacher referred me when I was struggling with

difficult friendships and low confidence.

This was affecting my schoolwork and my ability to get on the school bus. I was having panic attacks about the bus, going to the GP and it felt like everything

was closing in on me.

I was really anxious during the first

After this, I was able to join every week

session and had to leave 10 minutes in.

and after building a trusting relationship

Because I had been bullied in the past I

with the group members and leaders

was really worried that this would happen

I was able to share experiences I had

in the group too. I was so frightened and

faced! I was able to contribute to all the

overwhelmed and my anxiety meant I

discussions and activities, sharing my,

struggled to join in. I didn’t think I would

worries and advice for the others. It was

be able to do it but I spoke with the

really empowering for me to get support

group leader and she helped me with

from the rest of the group and hear of

a plan to try and settle in. I felt able to

similar situations they had been through.

come back on the call with my camera

We were all able to build each other

and microphone off (online group due to

up and learn how to be good friends to

Covid-19) and as the session unfolded

one another. The group supported me

I was able to start joining in with my

so much that I felt able to get back on

camera and microphone! The other

the bus to school! I couldn’t have done

group members were really respectful

that without this group and without every

and understanding of my worries and

person in the group supporting me. They

welcomed me as much as the leaders did.

got me through those six weeks and it made such a difference in my life.

I’m now much more confident and

Lastly, Diadem didn’t end after our

resilient, I can say no to people and stick

graduation.. the support we gave each

up for myself. I know how to be a better

other as a group was so invaluable that

friend, can spot toxic friendships, am

we decided to continue our weekly check

more independent and am now seven

ins with each other! We have a group chat

months free from any self-harming urges!

called ‘The Tuesday Group’ where we

I still have some days where things are

continue to support each other and build

a bit difficult but I am also able to get on

each other up, helping each other through

the bus to school and am coping well

the good and bad times.

there, making sure I speak out when I need someone to talk to. My mum said she has really seen the difference in me, especially with my confidence and the school side of things; particularly getting on the bus and standing up for myself. These are things I was not able to do before!



Our Youth Work in Schools is about being available to young people and supporting them with any challenges they are facing.

Contact information:

mixstowmarket 01449 745130


By building stronger and closer

partnerships, we believe we can

reduce the barriers young people face

well-being, positive peer relationships and resilience.

when accessing services, increase

2. What we promote – with one foot in

the challenges they are facing, and

school, we aim to play an important

services and activities that help to meet

families to know about and access the

as possible.

community that may benefit them.

our collective understanding of

the community and the other in the

develop responsive and meaningful

role in helping young people and their

the needs of our young people, as early

resources and opportunities within the

Our schools team work in two key ways:

Young people spend a lot of their time

1. What we offer – we work closely with

opportunity to be a part of their journey

in school, and for us it is a wonderful

the pastoral support teams to offer

– through the highs as well as the

1:1 coaching & mentoring, groups,


breaktime drop ins and wider initiatives such as peer support programmes. We take a preventative approach, looking

If you see us around your school, come and say hello!

to work in ways that promote holistic

“ Since the return from the latest lockdown, the help, advice, and support offered by these two has been so very much appreciated and welcomed. Their infectious positivity, calmness and resilience has helped both staff and students alike and they have both contributed to a calmer atmosphere to allow students to learn, despite the difficulties of the last few months.” Head of Year



Thrive is our alternative education provision based at The Mix, enabling young people to receive the support they need in education to thrive.

Contact information:

mixstowmarket 01449 745130


SINCE 2018:


students from 15 local schools

We believe that young people need to believe in themselves to thrive in life and learning, and that is our starting

point. We want to provide them with the opportunity to get to know who they

really are and build on their uniqueness


hours of support provided

from there.

We know that once they start to develop that confidence, they will thrive in becoming the best version of themselves. We focus on leading young people to develop positive thinking, to build resilience, grow perseverance, develop character and pursue excellence. Within our team, we have curriculum experts, SEN and SEMH specialists and experienced youth workers to support


students in all their needs.

as well as an amazing team of

purposeful in the teaching of character

local businesses and charities volunteers supporting us

We are able to offer a different learning environment from mainstream for those who need it. We have bespoke learning spaces within The Mix, as well as all the facilities on hand that The Mix and local community have to offer. Where we are education, we can empower young people to be resilient and bring hope and leadership to their lives and others.

Broken. Distressed. Overwhelmed. Withdrawn.


Y O U N G P E R S O N ’ S S T O RY


Is it too late? Is anything actually going to work for him? I genuinely didn’t know what to do next. Ben wasn’t communicating. He was

He has built relationships, he engages

totally shut down and so unhappy.

socially at Thrive and even eats with

Ben didn’t want to go to Thrive. He hates change and didn’t trust anyone. Why would they be any different? We arranged that he’d only stay for an hour the first day – he left shaking, but he went back. The second day he actually lifted his head and did the work and by the third day he was chatting and laughing. He came home with a smile on his face and his head held high. No-one had achieved that with him in four years. He trusts them. They listened to his needs and met him where he was at. They push him to challenge himself, but at the right time and in the right way. Ben knows he is valued, for who he is.

them. He sings along to music in the car on the way home from a Thrive day. He even attends on PD days and school holidays.

Ben’s confidence has grown. He now takes part in family life, in mealtimes and chatting with us. We gave them broken

They gave us back our son.

Their infectious positivity, calmness and resilience has helped both staff

and students alike and they have both contributed to a calmer atmosphere

to allow students to learn, despite the difficulties of the last few months.

The support received is a perfect example of a holistic approach and is a model that all external support agencies would benefit from aspiring to. It has been an absolute pleasure to work with both staff and we very much hope that this relationship can continue to see our students through what will undoubtedly be a year of trials over the next twelve months.

Head of Year


The support from Sophie and Sam has been priceless this term. Since the return from the latest lockdown, the help, advice, and support offered by these two has been so very much appreciated and welcomed.




Greenlights is our 1:1 primary school mentoring project to help children overcome difficulties ranging from anxiety, anger, low self-esteem and resilience.

Contact information:

mixstowmarket 01449 745130


In recent years, early intervention for

primary aged children has been getting the attention it deserves.

What we offer: One hour a week to one pupil for one year. Each of our trained mentors will give one

At The Mix Stowmarket, we believe

hour a week for a full academic year to

wholeheartedly that this is a vital part of

one child in year 5 or 6, offering them

healthy child development. We want to

the time and support that they need to

help children overcome difficulties ranging

thrive in areas such as self esteem and

from anxiety, anger, low self-esteem and

emotional regulation.

resilience and to instead face a future of greenlights and possibilities. That’s why we’re excited to have a team of committed volunteers, equipped with the skills they need to help one child at a time. Why we exist: It’s never been more important to offer children early intervention. Worrying statistics show that one in ten children in the UK feel unable to cope with the school day, and almost two thirds say they worry “all the time”.

Mentors will meet with pupils in their primary school, bringing with them a range of excellent and engaging resources. Cost to schools is just £39 per academic year per pupil, to cover resources. What next? If you would like more information about who we are, how we work or how to apply for a mentor to work with a pupil, please use the contact information on this page.



Our 1:1 Coaching & Mentoring is about empowering young people to learn about themselves, to recognise their value and to overcome obstacles and/or work towards their goals.

Contact information:

mixstowmarket 01449 745130


“ Coaching has made things so much better for me. I now have a plan of where I want to go, and how I’m going to get there. I feel so much better about myself, and my confidence and self-esteem has gone up.”


Coaching/Mentoring sessions provided between September and December 2021

Maybe you have a goal or dream you want to achieve, but just don’t know

where to start? Or maybe life is hitting you hard and you want someone

to support you in making positive

choices? Whatever it is, our dedicated team of Coaches and Mentors would love to help you reach your goal!

process which is managed internally between The Mix and the school, but young people aged 16 or over can selfrefer via our online sign up form on our website. Once signed up, a youth worker will be in touch to find out a little bit more and to help identify the best next step. If you are looking for support but not sure

Our Coaching & Mentoring usually

where to turn, please get in touch and one

takes place at The Mix, within school

of our team we will do our best to help

or remotely via video call. All of our

you navigate what options are available.

Coaches & Mentors are required to take

We have also provided a list of helpful

part in ongoing training, reflection and

contacts on our IAGS page.

supervision. Coaching and Mentoring for under 16’s as part of our school delivery has a referral



Crucial Crew is our annual safety event for Year 6’s across Mid Suffolk. It is fun, informative and life saving!

Contact information:

mixstowmarket 01449 745130


Crucial Crew is an annual child

safety event which has been running

nationally for in excess of fifteen years and in Mid Suffolk for over ten years. It is aimed at primary school children in

community sector organisations to deliver the eight scenarios including Suffolk Fire Service, Suffolk Constabulary, PPG Industries & UK Power Networks.

Year 6 (age 10/11).

What they say ...

The event is staged when year 6 pupils

“ We love Crucial Crew & think it’s a very

move from primary to secondary school, entering a more independent phase in their lives. Crucial Crew raises awareness of risky behaviours and their consequences. It provides general safety messages — from the consequences of anti-social behaviour,

important workshop to attend. Thank you to everyone for organising & delivering it to us.” “ It’s been an excellent afternoon for our year 6s. It backs up so many things we do in school, but addresses many issues we don’t, such as fire, drugs & alcohol.

to fire safety in the home.

It’s always good for the children to hear

We partner with a variety of voluntary and


these things in an environment outside of



Arts at The Mix is about providing a range of creative, fun and accessible activities for young people to get involved in. Currently this includes our weekly drama group and music studio sessions.

Contact information: Drama: Recording Studio: 01449 745130

mixstowmarket themixstowmarket

Many people do not realise that in our

with being able to cope better with daily

state-of-the-art building, we have a

life – listening, resilience and respecting

recording studio and also a performance

difference. Their ideas are used to

hall, complete with lighting box and fully

guide future content allowing increased

retractable auditorium seating! Over the

ownership of the work which culminates

years the performance hall has been

with a live performance.

hired by schools and arts organisations for rehearsals and productions, and since September 2020 has housed our Drama

Our recording studio can be hired via our partner Band Academy. Music and

@ The Mix workshops .

singing lessons are available from

Drama @ The Mix is currently open to

tutors. Alternatively, access to the studio

14-18 year olds and allows young people

is offered during some of our Drop-in

qualified and experienced DBS registered

from all backgrounds in the Stowmarket

sessions (age 11:18), ensuring access

area, the opportunity of taking part in an

for all.

accessible, top quality and fun cultural activity. Weekly workshops take place after school led by two experienced youth theatre practitioners. Through a series of drama games and exercises participants are encouraged to work together to develop the skills needed for a performance. These include building confidence, problem solving, teamwork and speaking out – all attributes linked to personal development and wellbeing. The young people are encouraged to use their imaginations whilst at the same time developing competencies linked

We strongly believe that participating in the arts has wide ranging benefits for young people’s wellbeing, as well as providing them with the opportunity to express their emotions in a positive way, make new friends with shared interests, and broadening their horizons. Most importantly, it creates a safe space where young people can truly be themselves. With our Expression creative art/craft group starting to become a more regular feature, watch this space for more Arts offerings in the future……

“ Everyone is really friendly and inclusive. I would really like to go again if possible.”

“ The environment is the best and it was a joy to go to every week. The performance gave us a chance to put all we had learned to the test and try and make something to show off how good we really were.”

“ My confidence has grown massively since doing drama and especially over the last couple of days rehearsing and performing and I’m so grateful to be a part of it. I hope to see you all again very soon.”


Y O U N G P E R S O N ’ S S T O RY

This is my story of what drama at The Mix has done to me and how it has helped me. At the first ever session I turned up

I have loved every minute of it and I

knowing only one person and had never

would love to continue doing it.

done any kind of drama production. I was also very shy and felt very worthless. However, as each week went on, I felt as though I progressed a tiny bit more,


Going to drama each week on a Tuesday evening has also made the rest of my weeks much more positive as I have had

especially with my confidence.

something I really enjoy and look forward

After all the sessions and performances,

I have had to go through so much, such

new friends and memories that I will

the best people around me to support

I have left with an amazing group of

remember for a long time. I have also

left with a massive confidence boost.

to. This has impacted me massively as as struggling at school and not having and help me. Just having something I

love to do has been amazing for me and

Having never performed to performing

my mental health. Taking part in drama

myself from how far I’ve come and how

capable of so now I’m hoping I will be able

two professional shows I feel so proud of hard I have pushed myself to be able to perform in front of an audience. My favourite part has been being able to make new friendships and feeling

comfortable around a group of people.

at The Mix has shown me what I’m to do more things similar to this.



Our Volunteers are the key players in our mission to inspire, empower and support young people in our community. We have a whole range of both face-toface and behind the scenes roles.

Contact information:

mixstowmarket 01449 745130


Do you have some spare time and feel passionate about the lives of young people in our community?

Are you looking to build up your confidence for returning to work, want to build up your CV with some experience for going to college or Uni, maybe you are retired with a wealth of life experience

Many of our volunteers would testify to the fact that they get more than they give. Spending time with young people or the knowledge that you have played even a small role in their life is both a joy and a privilege. Helping out behind the scenes is just as satisfying and our volunteers say that they love being part of a team.

and would like to give something back.

If you would like to find out a little bit more

Anyone from age 17 is welcome to join

about how you can get involved with the

us. Listening, smiling, encouraging or

work we do, then please get in touch!

supporting, just being there for a few hours a week/fortnight really does make a difference to the young people, our team and the wider community. There are many different ways to volunteer at The Mix, whether it’s as part

All our volunteers are given the training and support they need. By completing an application form, you can get the ball rolling... We hope to hear from you soon.

of our youth work team, or more behind the scenes, such as through helping out in our coffee shop, or helping with admin or fundraising.


volunteer hours donated in 2021!



A range of ways for young people to take a leading role in shaping the future, at The Mix, in their neighbourhoods and in the wider community.

Contact information:

mixstowmarket 01449 745130


Our aim is to equip young people with the skills and tools to grow as leaders. Firstly, so that they can lead their own lives and then beyond that to be leaders in their

Young Volunteers There are many ways for young people to volunteer at The Mix, such as helping

peer groups, schools and communities.

to run sports, music, gaming or craft

For all of our projects and activities we

growing confidence as well as building up

regularly ask the questions:

• How have young people shaped the conception, development, delivery and evaluation of this project? • Are there any young people whose

activities. This is also a great way of their CV and work experience. Youth Voice Whether it’s an idea for improving their community, or something they would love us to run at The Mix, we want to hear from

leadership development we are investing

young people. Here are some of the ways


for young people to share their thoughts

Here are some of the ways we are

and ideas:

doing this:

• Join us at one of our takeover events

Youth Social Action

• Complete one of our surveys or polls

Through our Youth Social Action initiatives,

• Speak to one of our friendly team

young people work together to make a difference in their area or community, on the issues that matter most to them.

To stay up to date with what’s going on at The Mix and the ways that you can get involved, follow us on social media!

“ I love volunteering at The Mix as I am able to help other people and possibly make someone else’s day easier or better. It’s great to learn about others and you may even learn something about yourself too. ” Ella, Young Volunteer



Unity is strength. When there is teamwork and collaboration, wonderful things can be achieved. - Mattie Stepanek

Contact information:

mixstowmarket 01449 745130


Our Partnership Programme started in early 2018 with community collaboration By supporting The Mix, we hope we can help improve the facilities for the charity, to ensure they can provide a happy environment for young people to grow and blossom. Tim Vincent, Commercial

Director at Kuda Automotive

at its heart. The programme’s focus was to build partnerships with local businesses and organisations to raise awareness of The Mix and to increase community engagement. As a charity that exists for young people, we felt we could make a bigger impact on young peoples’ lives by working together as a community. Over the last couple of years, we have been working with local businesses, charities, youth work organisations, individuals and the local authority, to

Having invested in the ‘Together project’ for a number of years, we have seen The Mix evolve significantly. We believe that the support and opportunities given to young people through their services are invaluable for the local community. The numerous success stories are testament to the dedication and hard work of each and every member of the team and something we are very proud to be part of. Antonio Ragosta, PPG raw

material process specialist,

and Stowmarket community engagement lead

ensure that young people across Mid Suffolk are receiving the opportunities, support and services that they need. When it comes to partnerships, we don’t take a ‘one size fits all’ approach. We have a range of incredible partners who support us in a variety of different ways, offering us their services, fundraising on our behalf, getting involved in one of our projects or offering work experience. All contributions are invaluable to The Mix. We work hard to ensure that our partners get as much from working with us as we do with them! If you, your business or the business you work for would like to find out more about becoming a partner, we would love to hear from you. We also welcome enquiries from businesses interested in fundraising or sponsoring an initiative here at The Mix.


When it comes to partnerships, we don’t take a ‘one size fits all’ approach. We have a range of incredible partners who support us in a variety of different ways, offering us their services, fundraising on our behalf, getting involved with one of our projects or offering work experience. All contributions are invaluable to The Mix and local young people and we work hard to ensure that our partners get as much from working with us as we do with them!

Needham Market Town Council

If you, the business or organisation you are linked with would like to find out more about becoming a partner, we would love to hear from you! We also welcome enquiries from businesses interested in sponsoring projects or initiatives!

Contact information: 01449 745130



Our Youth Work Academy aims to inspire and equip youth workers and volunteers by creating regular opportunities for learning, reflection and sharing.

Contact information:

mixstowmarket 01449 745130


Our Youth Work Academy is born out of a vision of a world in which every young person from any background can thrive and grow to become their best selves. We are passionate about creating the kind of learning communities that enable youth workers and volunteers to reflect, learn and grow. We believe learning happens best in community and aspire to offer learning opportunities that cover a broad range of topics and that bring together people from a wide range of experiences and disciplines.

Our main areas of work are: • Developing the skills of those working with children and young people so they can do it effectively and safely. • Encouraging learning and understanding through inspiration and reflection. • Providing care for youth workers and volunteers so they can invest in themselves to be able to invest in others. • Enabling delivery through the sharing of tools, tips and resources.



Here’s what to do if you need Urgent Support:

If the situation is an emergency: Call 999 If you think you need to make a referral: Call Customer First or The MASH If you would like to get some information or advice: Call The Emotional Wellbeing Hub

Samaritans: 116 123 (free 24-hour helpline) CALM Helpline: 0800 585858 (Helpline from 5pm–Midnight) Customer First: 0808 800 4005 NSPCC: 0808 800 5000 (Domestic Abuse Hotline) The MASH: 0345 606 1499

Refuge: 0808 2000 247 (Domestic Abuse Hotline) NSFT Support Helpline: 0808 196 3494 (Mental Health 24/7 helpline) Kooth: (Digital Support & Advice) Mind: (Mental Health Support) CALM: (Web Chat & Advice)

Suffolk Emotional Wellbeing Hub: 0345 600 2090 (Mon-Fri 8am-7.30pm) CEOP: (Reporting Online Abuse)

Turning Point: 01473 220240 (Suffolk Substance Misuse Service) St Elizabeth Hospice: 0300 303 5196 (Mon-Fri 9am-4pm) (Bereavement Enquiry Line)

C-Card Centre: Many of our team at The Mix are trained C-Card providers. To arrange to speak with one of our youth workers about sexual health, such as contraception or any concerns you may have, please just ask one of our friendly team.



We are a registered charity and as such, we rely on fundING OPPORTUNITIES to ensure we can deliver our services for young people.

Contact information:

mixstowmarket 01449 745130


HOW YOU CAN HELP: Join our Volunteer Fundraising Team and help young people in Mid Suffolk! Email:

CREATE YOUR OWN FUNDRAISER for The Mix. If you want to chat about it, get in touch! Email:


SIGN UP TO OUR 100 CLUB DRAW. It’s a simple way to spend £10 a month and if your number is drawn you win 50% of the membership fees taken that month. Pop in for sign-up details!




COULD YOU HELP US KEEP DELIVERING SERVICES? The impact of the COVID 19 crisis has led to local young people and their families needing The Mix’s support services now more than ever. Support The Mix to maintain these services in your community by making a donation.

Here’s some of the things we do: • Wellbeing Support • Coaching & Mentoring • Detached Youth Work • Working in Schools • Alternative Education • Life Skills

Text MIXFIVE to 70085 to donate £5 (Texts cost £5 plus one standard rate message)

Text MIXTEN to 70085 to donate £10 (Texts cost £10 plus one standard rate message)

• Employability Advice • Arts • Holiday Programmes

*includes an option to add gift aid



HAVE YOU HEARD ABOUT OUR BUSINESSES? The Mix has a fabulous base for all of our youth work programmes. However, our building costs a lot of money to run every month and we are able to cover those costs through our businesses. In fact, our building and our basic services for young people are all paid for through what we earn. There are two income generating arms. Firstly, Book a Space which rents out office space and a performance hall in the building, and secondly our trading subsidiary which currently houses two businesses. These are Cabbages and Kings, who now work in two locations (including the Duck & teapot at Needham Market), and BRIX, a branding and design agency for the charity sector. As well as providing great services, both businesses have a track record of employing and developing young people and they invest their profits into The Mix to help us deliver great youth work.


MEETING ROOM HIRE @brixcreative

At The Mix & Needham Lake



All profits are re-invested back into supporting young people and their families in Mid Suffolk and beyond!


127 Ipswich Street, Stowmarket, Suffolk,

IP14 1BB 01449 745130

The Mix Stowmarket