Another busy and exciting few months at Halas culminating in us being announced the Winner in the Community Engagement category at the 3rd Sector Care Awards
Olivia (initially a volunteer at Coffee Cups and now a full time apprentice) and Sophie (Halas Supported Employment, job coach) receiving the award from Dame Esther Rantzen on Friday 7th December
Team Halas” pictured with a representative from Triodos Bank UK who sponsored the “Community Engagement” Category award
Olivia is one of our brightest stars. She works so hard at Coffee Cups and is always coming up with new ideas for our café. Her family are very proud of her too. Her mom, Cathy said:
‘Olivia has had such a positive experience since meeting Sophie from Halas Employment. She loves working at Coffee Cups. As a family we are all thrilled that she is able to catch the bus to work everyday. She has learned many new skills at the coffee shop and her confidence, ability and self esteem have improved greatly. We feel that she could not be better placed than she is at the moment, working in a supportive, happy environment. We were unsure that she would ever be able to access paid employment but Halas have enabled her to do this and have given her the belief that she is worthy of making a valuable contribution to a work place setting.
We would recommend Halas Employment to anyone who has a young person with a learning disability who is looking for an opportunity to be able to work and gain real life experience’
We were thrilled when another two of our young job seekers, Connor and Tarique, began their permanent, paid jobs at DPD in October.
And, we are so proud of Sean (mentioned in our last blog, he interviewed James Morris MP about his London Marathon success) who has now gained employment with Sainsburys. Well done Sean 😊
Sean’s mom Ann said:
“Being a parent of an adult who needs support and guidance in life, you can only hope and trust that the people we come across are trustworthy, supportive and committed to doing their best for your child, just the same as you are as a parent.
When we came across Halas Homes and their very polite staff, it didn’t take long to feel comfortable to trust them to support our son even though we had struggled with trusting people most of our son’s life. We could tell almost instantaneously that our son was happy in their care. The help/support we have received …. not just for our son, but the reassurance to us as parents has been phenomenal. We are so grateful for the continued commitment Halas have shown and in particular Sophie (our son’s support worker).”
Big thank you to everyone who supported Breast Cancer Awareness at Coffee Cups on Friday 19th October. They raised an outstanding £500.16.
[Olivia (3rd from the right) with her Coffee Cups colleagues. Olivia was responsible for much of the organisation of this event.]
Thank you too to Margaret, a local resident who crocheted forget me knots and sold them to Coffee Cup customers to raise money for the Alzheimer Society
Thank You Concert for Halesowen Golf Club
Halesowen Golf Club have once again chosen Halas Homes as their charity for 2018, which we are grateful for.
We organised a concert at the golf club to thank them for their continued support. It was a really well attended fun afternoon with great music, lovely weather and plenty of ice cold drinks!
We have been so busy that we even had two bookings on the same day.
“Arts all over the place” Mental Health Awareness week Birmingham
The sign and sign choir were invited to perform at a multi-arts festival and exhibition celebrating the positive impact of creativity on mental wellbeing.
Contact Dance Company, The Arena Theatre,
University of Wolverhampton
At the same time members of Dance Unity were performing a new piece alongside “Contact Dance” (part of “Shropshire Inclusive Dance)
Sing and Sign for Remembrance
We performed in the Cornbow centre on 7th November and at the Remembrance Service at St Margaret’s at Hasbury Primary School on 9th November.
Margaret again got her crochet needles out and produced dozens of beautiful poppies which were sold in the Cornbow Centre during the performance raising £96.75 for the Royal British Legion.
Sing & Sign and Employment Project at WI Halesowen College,
Wednesday 7th November
Thank you to our local WI (inspiring!!) for helping us raise the roof by joining in singing and signing.
We really enjoyed our time with you and what amazing cakes
Halesowen Golf Club Concert, Thursday 8th November
A heartfelt thank you from all of us at Halas to all the members of Halesowen golf club for raising such an incredible amount of money for us. And we love performing at your venue to such an appreciative audience. Thank you
Members of our music club really enjoyed performing alongside professional musicians
Stars in Their Eyes
Friday 16th November
This year we decided on a change to our usual Christmas play and instead held an evening with the stars. Performances included, Tom Jones, Queen and Tina Turner.
Audience and performers alike had a brilliant evening. Emma (Leona Lewis) said …
“My Mom and Dad and Aunty and Uncle came and they all thought I was really good, they loved my singing and watching the show”. I wore a lovely red dress like Leona.”
Paul (aka Michael Jackson) showed his backing dancers how it should be done. He said ….
“Michael Jackson is my favourite and I love dancing”.
Halesowen in Bloom
We achieved a silver gilt at the National Britain in Bloom awards!!
Halesowen also only went and “bloomin” won the category and are “National Champions for the Urban Community”!
Well done and thank you to everyone who contributed in any way, fantastic community
Halas Homes Garden Club looks after a plot outside St John’s church along with pupils from St Margaret’s at Hasbury Primary school.
Eve O’Connor (Chairwoman, Halesowen in Bloom) said
“Halas Homes are a shining example of how volunteering in the community can be mutually beneficial for all. Halesowen in Bloom along with the community of Halesowen are grateful for the efforts of the volunteers. We have seen greater community cohesion at the heart of the project and love having Halas Homes as part of this
Halas Homes Family Tea Party in the Forget Me Not Dementia Garden
9th September 2018
Back in November 2016 Alison, our CEO definitely went “above and beyond” when she climbed Machu Picchu in Peru! This was to raise money for a dementia garden to be built at Halas.
A group of service users, family and friends also took part in a Memory Walk in Birmingham which also raised funds for the garden.
A local gentleman, Andrew Snead, ran the Moscow marathon last year and donated his sponsor money towards the garden.
We were really pleased to be able to have a garden party in the Forget Me Not garden this summer.
Special thanks to Becs, a local young artist, for her beautiful artwork which will be added to next Spring
The gardening group created a beautiful community garden at our local surgery at Meadow Brook Road complete with watering cans to encourage members of the community to help keep the garden looking lovely
Visitors from Halas took part in Halesowen college’s community “Fit and Fed” programme. During this week’s sessions they enjoyed exploring the trim trail and animal care courtyard
“Do you see what I see?”
In our previous blog we introduced our Arts Project which will be going “on tour” all around the west midlands from March until November 2019.
Keep your eye on our Twitter page to see when it will be coming to a venue near you!
As part of the project, participants designed Christmas cards which have been on sale at Halas during December
We were thrilled and very proud to be awarded an overall “good” with an “outstanding” in the category of “Responsive” following our CQC inspection in August.
The culture of the home, the values demonstrated by every staff member and our person-centred approach to caring have truly been recognised.
Before our CQC inspection we received feedback about the services we provide from service users’ families, service users and professionals. The results from these questionnaires were very positive.
100% rated Halas as excellent/good in response to “Do you feel your relative receives the care and support they should?”
Below is a response received from one relative:
“We are more than happy with the care provided by Halas Homes and the staff. The activities provide stimulation and entertainment. Halas Homes care is excellent, and the staff are exemplary”.
Learning Disability Week. Birmingham City University
20th and 21st July
We were very pleased to be able to work with students undertaking their degrees in learning disability nursing during Learning Disability Awareness week this year. Our Sing and Sign choir performed and also our Supported Employment project had a stand to raise awareness about helping people with learning disabilities to gain and sustain employment.
NCS visits (National Citizen Service), 1st August 2018
For a second year we provided a group of young people from Wolverhampton college with the opportunity to come and to work with us at The Meeting Place for a couple of days during the school holidays.
Health & Wellbeing, Halesowen College
29th October 2018
Following on from the success of the Trim Trail in the summer a group from our day service spent at day in the gym at Halesowen College trying out all sorts of different sports and activities. These included foam javelin throwing, frisbee golf and basketball.
We are looking forward to this becoming a more frequent activity in the new year which will hopefully be supported by some of the college students.
Sponsored tandem ride 16th September
Richard Bilson (the husband of Helen, one of our staff members) set himself the impressive challenge of cycling 300 miles for Cancer Research earlier this year. John, a tenant in Halas Supported living, joined Richard for part of his ride. Well done Richard and John
Things to look forward to. What’s coming up ….
Sing and Sign have again been asked to perform at this wonderfully festive concert at Birmingham Town Hall on Sunday 23rd December
They will also be performing in the Cornbow Centre on “Dignity Day” – 1st February 2019
The 29th June 2019 is “Care Home Open Day”.
Halas will be opening its doors to the local community. As is previous years we are looking forward to a busy day with lots going on to everyone entertained.
AND LOTS MORE!!…
And finally a HUGE thank you to all our wonderful staff who frequently go above and beyond to ensure that we are able to offer an enormous variety of activities and opportunities to everyone we work with.
We would like to thank all our supporters for all their help and support throughout 2018 and wish you all