One of the most uplifting, feelgood stories of 2020 may well have sprung out of the Covid-19 crisis and your incredible efforts to raise money for The Honeypot Children's Charity and the amazing work they do to support the mental health of children across the UK.
When the nationwide Spring lockdown was imposed early last year, Gareth and I felt passionate about supporting the mental health of children, as we could see the devastating impact Covid was having on them. Never did we imagine that, through the sale of our Hoxton Rainbow Trainers and Face Masks, all of us would go on to raise £16,000 during the Christmas Big Give. You can read more about that here.
Following the £16,000 donation, I caught up with the team at Honeypot and I'm delighted to share with you that the incredible sum raised would help to benefit 55 children through a number of the services they provide.
The Honeypot Children’s Charity may not be as well known as some of the other bigger charities, but this certainly doesn't mean they are any less active! Honeypot focuses on supporting children who are between the ages of 5-12 years old and who are full-time carers for their parents or other siblings and who miss out on a normal childhood and its pleasures.
One of the biggest areas of support that Honeypot provides are through residential respite breaks that are delivered across their two fully-equipped sites in the New Forest and Wales. Respite breaks consist of a three-day, two-night stay, over a weekend or in school holidays. During their stay, children have the opportunity to take part in a wide range of activities, socialise with peers with shared experiences and engage with responsive, encouraging adults. Given freedom from routine, children are able to choose from activities such as swimming, riding bicycles and go-karts, caring for the Honeypot pets, exploring woodland and arts and crafts. Many inner city dwelling children will be experiencing these activities for the first time in their lives.
Honeypot also focuses on residential Social and Emotional Active Learning (SEAL) breaks. They introduced a programme of Social and Emotional Active Learning (SEAL) breaks at their Hampshire house in 2019, designed to target specific learning needs and to offer more personalised time in a group setting for children who struggle in larger groups at school.
However, recognising the challenges that many schools are facing in the current climate, Honeypot also commenced delivery of an online and in-school programme of SEAL workshops, which have been offered to their partner schools and has been designed to focus on well-being issues directly linked to the effects of lockdown, including social isolation, poor self-esteem, self-confidence and communication and increased anxiety.
Due to the ravages of Covid-19, it has not been possible for children to travel to the Honeypot centres, to have their vital respite and SEAL breaks, so the charity have been focused on running their online services which have been crucial for reaching children and providing them with much needed support.
One of the criteria that Gareth and I had when we were initially searching for our partner charity was that we felt passionate about working with a smaller charity, as we felt that whatever contribution we would be able to make would perhaps go a little way further in terms of making a difference.
Honestly, I am so proud of all of you who have helped to make a difference to these 55 children. None of this would have been possible without your loyalty and phenomenal support last year and I hope, through continued passion and work, that together, we will continue to help raise vital funds for The Honeypot Children's Charity and their inspirational children this year.
Wonderful. Foldable shoes to weekend respites for hero kids.. heartwarming