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Sunday, 23 January 2022

The Charlie Watkins Foundation: Support for young people in Essex

THE Charlie Watkins Foundation (CWF) has been working with the Youth Enquiry Service (YES) in Essex since the beginning of 2021 and now, thanks to the generosity of our supporters, we have been able to commit to funding two special projects for 2022 and 2023. 

Poor mental health can begin at any age. In fact, around one in six children are affected by mental health challenges. 

This is why we’ve been working closely with YES since the beginning of 2021 to fund a school navigator role in Essex schools. 

YES works with some of the most vulnerable young people in Essex and helps to address their emotional needs. It has a long and successful track record spanning 30 years and annually supports around 2,000 young people. 

The school navigator role we have funded has proved essential to many schools in the area, offering face-to-face support to students. It has enabled young people to have someone neutral to talk to about how they are feeling as well as providing the right tools to cope with their challenges. As of October 2021, the role had supported more than 104 students. 

Following the success of the school navigator role in 2021, we’re thrilled to now commit to both this role and an additional school navigator role for 2022 and 2023. It is hoped that this will enable more schools in Essex to benefit from the school navigator’s expertise and support. 

We’re also thrilled to be funding essential items for YES’ GoGreen project, a community garden in Colchester where young people can go to spend time outside. 

The garden has an allotment area with fruit and vegetables which young people can grow from seeds to harvest – plus a small kitchen inside where they can cook simple recipes using their produce. 

The garden provides a tranquil and safe space to connect with the natural world and engage in therapeutic activities.  

With the help of our funding, the GoGreen project has been able to fund essential gardening tools as well as a large 6m by 3m gazebo that is very helpful in bad weather, enabling activities to continue taking place for young people in the garden. 

There will also be a summer house called Charlie’s Chat Room. This will be a quiet place for young people to chat about how they are feeling.

We’re so happy to be supporting these crucial projects in Essex and we hope to help many young people use these services in the next two years. 

This project would not have been possible without the help and support of generous donors and fundraisers at the Charlie Watkins Foundation.

If you like the sound of this project and you’re keen to help, please consider making a donation or setting up a fundraiser via our JustGiving page. 

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