On May 10th we held an Activities Consultation Event at the St Ives Hotel, St Annes. We wanted to get the opinions of everyone we support to do activities, and our activity staff, about how we could improve the range and quality of the activities we provide. Eighty people attended the afternoon in all and were rewarded by tea and a selection of gateaux. We are grateful for their time and their helpful feedback.
A recurring theme of the event was that the people we support liked what we did – but wanted more of it. More cookery groups, drama and recycling were requested. Regarding what FCL already had in place, many people said they appreciated the opportunity to trial different activities before making a choice. Being able to take away an activity leaflet and discuss the options with families or staff was also found to be helpful.
Everyone who attended the event had the chance to enter our prize draw competition by suggesting a new activity FCL had never tried before. Ideas for new activities included groups for days out, walking, camping, cinema, graffiti, dining out, film-making, fishing, pottery and healthy eating. Some suggestions for activities were more way out, such as ‘crime scene investigations’, but would be rather difficult for us to provide!
We are delighted with the range of ideas that were shared with us and pleased that we have been able to introduce a good number of these new activities as part of our ten week Summer Activity Festival: pottery, camping and fishing, graffiti, film nights (preceded by pizza making) as well as a ‘Meet up and go out’ group which went for a brand new outing every week.
Cookery and healthy eating were popular topics at the event. Supported individuals asked for more cookery classes - especially ones which prepared healthy options. As a result of this, we are now running 4 sessions each week. This term the cookery groups are re-creating takeaway meals – but with the emphasis on healthy eating versions. Favourite dishes getting a healthy makeover include kebabs, meat feast pizza, Thai green curry, piri piri chicken and, everyone’s favourite, chicken korma.
We will be continuing to extend our range of activities and already have some fishing day trips in place for the autumn.
A record number of 190 people attended the 21st AGM which was held on Wednesday 4th November, at its usual venue of the Lytham St Annes Technology and Performing Arts College.
In response to feedback from the people who use our services the meeting started at the earlier time of 6.15pm this year and this adjustment was appreciated.
The meeting was opened by Ruth Jackson, who said she was fortunate to be Chair of FCL in its 30th anniversary year. Referring to the celebrations which had taken place and were continuing she noted that, as with all FCL events, everyone involved and connected with the company had participated. She felt that team work and inclusiveness were two of FCL’s strengths and these helped to make FCL the transparent and forward-looking organisation that it is today.
After the business meeting there were a series of presentations given about the work of the organisation. One highlight was Karen Howard’s interview with a service-user (Neil), who was celebrating clocking up 15 years as an employee of McDonalds. His manager, Sarah Jane, was also there to affirm his achievements in the workplace.
Trophies were presented for those who won bowling, darts and dominos competitions at the Quality Group's annual outing to Owd Nell's which took place earlier in May.
Staff awards for both leadership and best practice were also presented.
Margaret Trott, Chair of the Friends of FCL, spoke about the Friends fundraising efforts which were currently directed towards purchasing a new crew bus for the Recycling and Gardening groups.
The evening ended with a delicious buffet meal and drinks. Many people took the opportunity to view to display panels which the projects and activity groups had made to give a visual record of the year. The results of our annual Care Quality Survey were also displayed.
FCL's Annual Report 2015 can be found here.
Fylde Community Link celebrated their 30th anniversary in style at a Gala Dinner held at the Hilton Hotel, Blackpool on the 3rd of October. 190 people attended the event, including supported individuals, their friends and families, staff and members of the FCL Board. A delicious 3 course meal was served, followed by coffee and a piece of the special 30th anniversary cake. The Chief Executive, Fergus Stokes, gave a speech about the history of Fylde Community Link and how it had developed from an organisation called “Ladyeholme” and then it was time for the raffle to be drawn, with prizes such as Amazon vouchers, a night at the Hilton Hotel and luxurious chocolates up for grabs.
There then followed an evening of ceilidh dancing, performed by the talented and energetic Triple Scotch Ceilidh Band. For many, the highlight of the evening was the inclusivity of the ceilidh dancing as people who use wheelchairs, people variously without hearing, sight, speech or other ability were enabled to enjoy music, movements, touch and social interaction by the person centred support of their staff, friends and family.
93 people attended our Owd Nell's Day out this year - out biggest turn out ever! Everyone enjoyed the darts, dominoes and bowls competitions, and the delicious barbecue lunch with puddings went down a treat!
Fylde Community Link's Bowling Night took place in March with prizes for highest scoring individual and team. The Bad Dog, Hornet, Kangaroo, Newt, Owl, Panda, Racoon and Tree Frog teams all took part with the Bad Dogs winning overall with 678 points. Runners up were the Hornets with 593 points. The evening also involved a carvery meal at the Pig and Whistle which was enjoyed by all!
The Fylde Community Link Christmas Party took place on Tuesday the 16th of December at Blackpool Football Club. Despite the poor weather there was an excellent turnout of over 200 guests, who enjoyed a disco, buffet and raffle.
Merry Christmas from everyone at Fylde Community Link and Best Wishes to you all for 2015!
The Quality Group held their annual Christmas Meal at the St Ives Hotel in St Annes on Monday the 8th of December. The meal was delicious and a good time was had by all!
Fylde Community Link's 20th Annual General Meeting (AGM) was held on Wednesday the 22nd of October at LSA Technology and Performing Arts College, with a fantastic turnout of 179 attendees. The Annual Report was delivered, and presentations were given including speed dating, the Quality Survey and Staff Satisfaction Survey, the Friends of Fylde Community Link (FFCL), Warton Drama Group, Derek's visit to the Palace and Tramshed Inclusive Theatre.
Trophies for those who won sporting events at the Quality Group's Owd Nell's day out were presented, along with staff awards for leadership and best practice. A gift voucher was also presented to Alison in recognition of her many year's volunteering at the Office. End of Life Care training certificates were also presented to staff who had undergone this training earlier this year.
Delicious refreshments were then served, and there were opportunities for socialising, visiting the Craft Group's stall (which raised over £48) and viewing each project's display board as well as boards presenting information about the results of the Quality Survey.
Thank you to everyone who attended and we hope to see you at the next AGM.
The Quality Group held their annual Garden Party on the 14th of August. We were very lucky with the weather and no-one got wet (apart from poor Jim and Dave in the stocks!). Thank you to everyone who came and took part in the fun - see you next year!
Many thanks to everyone who attended our Driving up Quality event at the St Ives Hotel on the 9th of July. It was a very productive day, and we got lots of useful information which we will put towards creating our Action Plan!