Kevin shares his experience of receiving a Wellbeing Grant, and how a grant for a cooker led him and his family to going on holiday for the first time in years.
“I first heard of Barnwood Trust a few years back, when my wife had seen a poster in town for a Barnwood Trust drop-in session. We had been having cooker problems, and within days of contacting the Trust we had someone out to see us, and very soon after we had a new cooker! We couldn’t believe it, we were only expecting a repair! Ever since then I’ve stayed in touch with Barnwood Trust – particularly Penny, who works at The Main Place in Coleford.”.
After the cooker, Penny came around for a chat and asked if there was anything else the Trust could help with. She saw that I had a mobility scooter, and I explained that it was costing us quite a lot each month in rental fees. We also explained that my daughter didn’t have a laptop or printer for her schoolwork, and how she was struggling. Straight away Penny said that we could apply for a grant, and quite soon after I had my own scooter, and my daughter had what she needed for school.
Unfortunately, that scooter had some technical faults, but eventually we got the whole thing replaced and the new one has been a lifeline. I live on a hill and before having a scooter I was housebound, but now I can have my independence and it’s not costing us a huge amount each month. I can get into town and back home again so easily.
After all of that, in 2019 Penny asked about whether we wanted to go on holiday. To be honest, at that time my family really needed a break. Since I was four years old my family have gone to a caravan park in Wales, and I knew straight away that was where I wanted to go. So, we applied for a grant for a holiday and had a lovely week away.
Looking back, it was quite a dark time a few years ago. I don’t like charity and taking too much, because I feel that there’s always someone else who needs it more than me, but the grants have really made life more liveable, and Penny and I still talk from time to time; she’s been absolutely brilliant.