Tag Archives: Charity

Charity of the Week – We Are Bromley

use this in tweetsWe Are Bromley starts on Monday 22nd of August and ends on Sunday 28th August but what is it?

We Are Bromley week is seven days of celebrating community in Bromley and is co-ordinated by Citygate Food+ who are a charitable initiative that helps the most vulnerable people in Bromley.

Citygate Food+ provides fresh food for those in food poverty and practical assistance to those who are in most need.

intuBromley has named Citygate Food+ as their charity partner for 2016 and together they have launched the first We Are Bromley week.

The aims of We Are Bromley week are –

  • to celebrate local organisations, charities and community groups that already build communities in Bromley,
  • encourage both businesses and individuals across Bromley to identify themselves as part of the community and do their bit in supporting and growing it and,
  • by undertaking a “compassion project”, e.g., a regeneration of a community space or encouraging others to join in the project and do their own during the week.

We Are Bromley underlines the idea that everybody is part of the community and everybody can make a positive impact.

There are a number of events throughout the week and they demonstrate that it’s possible to be aware of and help your community and still have fun!

There is a “Ring A Bottle” stand (with some fab prizes!) at the community hub outside M&S all through We Are Bromley week and outside the Disney store on Saturdays until the end of August. Don’t forget – whether you win or not tell us what is good in Bromley in your eyes!

If you call into the Sainsbury’s on Beckenham High Street and declare “We are Bromley” to the people behind the Customer Services counter you may just be rewarded with a cookie or some chocolate coins! All you have to do to get the goodies is be one of the first 50 each day of We Are Bromley week to say the magic words! While you’re there please leave a message to say what you think is good about Bromley!

On Monday there is a fun event with a wide range of arts, crafts and sports activities for kids and parents of all ages at the Blenheim Children and Family Centre on Blenheim Road in Orpington. If it’s your first time at the centre please register when you arrive. Any questions about this? Sarahjane Hawkes-Rossi is the person to call – 01689 831193.

On Friday 26th August why not dress in style and get along to the jazz, cocktails and canapes evening? Let’s face it, that’s an unbeatable combination! If you can’t resist the temptation and are burning to go then click here and book your spot!

The biggest single project of the week is sprucing up the building that is used by Bromley Drug and Alcohol Service. The aim is to redecorate as many of the rooms as possible. Many people are working together to do this – people from church, NCS Bromley, people who have benefited from the Food Bank in the past and a volunteer pool from the people who us BDAS will also be helping.


Your help is needed on this project! If you have any skills that can help speed this project to a wonderful finish then please ring 020 8662 6850 and have a chat about when and how you can help. It’s not about working a full day, an hour helping would be an hour well spent and you’d be a very welcome sight!

Find out more about We Are Bromley week on their website and follow Citygate food+ and intuBromley on Twitter for all the news of what’s happening and how you can join in on the fun, games and love!

We are Bromlely front piece

Phil Price – update

Phil PriceHearing about what Phil Price was aiming to do really knocked us off our feet here at Life in Bromley and since we first featured him I’ve spoken to him several times. The initial enthusiasm and dedication to both his training and the Maypole Project has not diminished in the slightest.

Since we last spoke Phil had been upping his training and distance in preparation for a 100 mile run. He told me that training was really good (though there had been a slight concern with his shin) and coupled with a great quiz night that raised £1,500 towards his £25,00 target everything was very positive.

Endurance runs aren’t continuous and this was something I didn’t know until I met Phil. There are regular stopping points for water and snacks and the participants spend time walking as well as running particularly when going uphill. This all makes a lot of sense when it’s explained to you!

The first 50k of the run (which happened on 28th May) was uneventful but then around the 70k mark the small niggle in his shin began to become a problem. He kept on running as he was meeting his physiotherapist (Tim) at the 80k mark but by the time he had reached the 78k mark he was hobbling. He told me that at this point he wasn’t just suffering physically but his focus had waned and he was struggling mentally with the challenge. He decided not to continue with the 100 mile target and call it a day at 100k.

This quote from his website shows how hard he found the run –

” I told Tim that I was calling the 100 miles that my head had gone, but I was going to finish the 100k at the point I actually voiced this out loud, I could of cried I thought about all those people who had wished me luck, supported me all this way and I was giving up Tim who had come straight from work to support me and I was giving up this was a new feeling I had never done this. Tim looked at me and then said quite simply not to worry, this was a training run the very fact that a 100k run was a training run for me was astonishing, whilst all the other people around me were using this as their actual goal, their dream. I was using it for training there was no expectation of me and I had not let anyone down. With this I got up and after taking a picture was on my way. Seeing Tim had spurred me on and the shouts of encouragement were still ringing in my ears when I encountered the latest hill.”

Phil is currently injured and his training is restricted to swimming and light strengthening conditioning so he’s currently concentrating on fundraising and learning more about where his strengths lie in order to be able to complete the run – the equivalent of SEVEN marathons over a couple of days isn’t a small aspiration! Getting publicity and raising funds is as hard work as training and this is where he needs your support. He is doing all this to support the Maypole Project and to raise awareness of their work in the wider community. Any amount, no matter how small, will be gratefully received and details of how to give are on his website!

Please follow Phil and his progress on Twitter – the more followers he has, the higher profile the Maypole Project has! His mammoth task begins at the crack of dawn in Cirencester on the 16th of September so if you feel like cheering him on at the start then don’t let us stop you!

Charity of the Week – Mission Care

MissionCafe_LogoMission Care was founded by Dr Selina Fox in 1904 and it has a history that’s worth reading about. The first homes for the elderly in Bromley were opened in the 40s and 50s and now they have over 200 residents in five care homes in South East London.

Mission care commit themselves to not just providing a high standard of care but also in a loving, comfortable environment. The residents are encouraged to exercise their freedom of choice and their dignity and individuality is a priority.

Four of the care homes provided nursing care for older people including people living with dementia and the fifth is a residential home which provides care for younger adults who live with physical disabilities. They can also provide respite care.

To help raise money to run the homes Mission Care have a charity shop called Brix on Chatterton Road and it is open Monday to Saturday from 9.00 – 4.00 – pop in and have a browse! The don’t just sell the usual range of charity shop items, they also have a craft department so those of you who are arty and crafty may well find something to your liking!
If you’d like to make a donation of goods to the shop please do so during opening hours.

The charity have recently opened a dementia friendly café at Unit 8A in The Mall, Bromley. It’s a safe and comfortable environment for those living with dementia and also for their friends, families and carers and is, of course, open to any member of the public who wants to pop in for lunch or a hot drink!


They serve a selection of panini, soups and cakes as well as a selection of hot drinks. If you’d like to see what the café is like before you visit then check out their Flickr page!

You can find Mission Care on Twitter, Facebook, Flickr and, of course, their website.

Charity of the Week – Bromley Y

Bromley Y iiAs teenagers we make the transition from child to adult and it can be confusing to say the least. There will be few people who breeze through their adolescence without problems of some kind or another. For some people those years will be much harder and, without the right kind of guidance and help, they may carry problems associated with growing up into their adulthood.

When you’re young facing problems can be difficult. Sometimes you don’t want parents or teachers to know that you’re having a tough time and sometimes the friends you do confide in are as stumped as you are as to what to do next. So what do you do?

If you are living, studying or working in Bromley then Bromley Y strives to offer a safe and friendly environment to enable young people to explore what is happening in their lives and to help them find ways forward.

What kind of problems can Bromley Y help with?

  • bereavement;
  • being bullied;
  • feeling suicidal;
  • feeling isolated;
  • eating problems;
  • family problems;
  • feeling angry or violent;
  • self-harming;
  • sexual or emotional abuse;
  • feeling unhappy or depressed;
  • sexual or emotional relationship difficulties;
  • difficulties at school, college or work.

No young person should feel as though they need to wait until a problem is getting on top of them before they get in touch with Bromley Y. It can be easier to resolve a difficulty early on than leaving it to get worse.

The important thing to know is that a young person doesn’t have to wait to be referred to Bromley Y or be taken there by a family member, they can approach them themselves and ask to see somebody.

“I always feel relaxed and open when being at Bromley Y because all of the counsellors are generally warm-hearted. They always listen and are very polite.”

To help young people deal with these problems Bromley Y offers two kinds of one-to-one support – Counselling and Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT).

Counselling isn’t about handing out advice or telling you what to do to tackle the difficulties you’re going through. A therapist helps you to understand the issues that worry you so that you can make the best decision in how to deal with them. In your sessions you can talk about whatever you need to without being judged, and in the knowledge that what you say will remain confidential. The therapists at Bromley Y respect the values and lifestyles of the people they see.

“I felt like I wasn’t judged and I could speak about my issues without anything I said directly affecting my life.”

CBT is talking therapy which helps set clear goals and work towards solutions. Working with you a therapist can help identify problem areas of your life that you want to focus on and, using structured techniques, can help you to understand how you are thinking, how this may cause problematic feelings or behaviours and how you can challenge the way you are thinking.

Both counselling and CBT sessions take place in a comfortable and private place.

Apart from one-to-one support Bromley Y offers school support (currently with twelve schools in the area), group work, family therapy, parent support, mentoring and also professional consultations.

You can call Bromley Y on 020 3770 8848 but please don’t be put off if you need to leave a message, they will get back to you!

You can email them at info@bromleyy.org or by snail mail at 17 Ethelbert Road, Bromley BR1 1JA.

You can find Bromley Y on Twitter and Facebook as well as their website where there is a page of very useful links and contact information young people, their families, carers and friends may find helpful. If you’d like to make a donation to help Bromley Y with their work there is a link on their home page!

Bromley Y

Our first networking event!

On Thursday 12 May we’re networking with Bromley Business Club (@BromleyBizClub) at Henry’s Wine Bar (@Henrysbromley). We’ve invited all the charities and community groups that we’ve featured since the launch of our website in September. Both Life in Bromley (@lifeinbromley) and Bromley Business Club firmly believe that we all have experience and expertise that can be shared and that the wonderful charities and community groups of Bromley should be (and will be) encouraged to network with the businesses that are associated with Bromley Business Club!

Charity of the Week – West Wickham Rotary Club


Almost everybody has heard about Rotary Clubs but how many of us know what they’re about?

Rotary International has more than 34,000 clubs worldwide and one of them is based in West Wickham. In the spirit of Rotary across the world the club provides service to others, promotes integrity and aspires to advance world understanding, goodwill and peace.

West Wickham Rotary sees itself as a friendly club with men and women as members. They are a range of ages with a variety of careers and interests. Their motivation for being part of Rotary may vary but they are like-minded people who enjoy fundraising for communities both close to home and internationally.fJ67R1Lq_400x400

It’s not all serious at West Wickham Rotary as they enjoy social events and they visit their sister club in Sedan, France every other year and act as hosts to them in the alternate years.

Their annual firework display, which is one of their major fundraising events, attracts up to 3,000 people and the Christmas collections with Father Christmas are well know but they do respond quickly if they hear of a natural disaster. They support several charities including Juvenile Diabetes, Demelza, End Polio Now, MSF and St Christopher’s Hospice.

West Wickham Rotary Club was formed in 1934 and to celebrate their 50th anniversary in 1984 they raised over £5,000 for local charities and £2,000 for the Polio Plus Campaign.

There have been many notable achievements over the years including raising funds to build a games room in Cheyne Hospital in 1972, promoting a four day careers exhibition at the Arnham Gallery in Croydon and in both 1979 and 1984 they staged a four day Leisure for Pleasure exhibition promoting arts and crafts. For over 40 years the club has contributed to supporting pupils at the Starchi School in Kenya.

The club promoted and formed a Rotaract Club in 1974, a Probus Club in 1977 and an Exact Club in 1983.

With overall membership of West Wickham Rotary Club both ageing and dropping in numbers it is becoming increasingly difficult for them to carry out the projects that they’d like to but they are able to make significant contributions to local charities with the revenue from the Bonfire Night and Christmas collections.

If you’d like to become a member of West Wickham Rotary or would like to find out more about them then visit their website or tweet them!

Charity of the Week – Freddie Farmer Foundation


The Freddie Farmer Physiotherapy Centre is one of only a few independent UK therapy centres that offers special equipment and therapeutic exercises. It supports children from all over London and the South East. Their first assessment was on 20 April 2015 their doors were opened to the first children on 11 May 2015. They currently have the capacity to help up to 100 children per year.

The inspiration behind the centre is Freddie Farmer who was born early (28 weeks into the pregnancy) and with cerebral palsy; he weighed just 2Ibs 12oz.

Freddie’s family had been taking him for intensive therapy three times a year to use a piece of equipment called the “spider” (which is why there is a spider as their logo) but the centre was 100 miles away. Freddie made great progress but it became clear that a centre closer to home where he would get treatment more often would be even better.


The ‘Ready, Freddie, GO!’ campaign was set up in 2011 to fund a specialised physiotherapy centre and the driving force behind the campaign was quite simply Freddie and other children like him.

The campaign, which raised over £400,000 saw hundreds of people take to climbing mountains, walking and running marathons, cycling to Paris, jumping out of aeroplanes and generally having a ball at raising the cash!

Not only does the charity have to raise £150,000 a year to cover their costs, they’re also embarking on a drive to raise money for a “game-changing” piece of equipment. The LokoHelp gait-trainer looks like a sophisticated treadmill – the child is suspended from a harness, and their legs enclosed in robotic boots, on top of the conveyor belt. It does the work of two physiotherapists – holding the child’s legs in an upright position to enable the children to walk in the correct walking pattern, to build their muscles. The Freddie Farmer Foundation has one on loan, but they’ll have to raise £55,000 to keep it.

“I really like the fact that the Freddie Farmer therapy centre is not too clinical for the children, we feel at home and very cosy”

Providing a fun, child-friendly ‘home from home’ environment combining specialist equipment and therapeutic exercises is the approach of the Freddie Farmer Foundation and they help a wide range of children who have cerebral palsy, developmental delay, acquired brain injuries, strokes, dyskinesia: ataxia, athetosis and dystonia and other non-progressive neurological disorders and syndromes.

“Our aim is to help the children we care for to become more mobile and independent”

We provide 2-3 hours per day of intensive physiotherapy over a 2 or 4 week block session. Block session dates for 2017 will be released later this year and we anticipate the places filling very quickly due to the demand we have already experienced.

The home programmes are specially tailored for each child and are given to parents so that they can continue the important exercises at home.


The Freddie Farmer Foundation raises the fund for the Freddie Farmer Physiotherapy Centre and it can be found in Elliott Road, Bromley.

So how can you help?

If you’re a business then you may like to think about becoming a corporate sponsor. For example, Bromley Football Club recently presented a cheque to the foundation for £2,000 which came from their share of the FA Cup Pool prize money after they got through to the first round of last season’s FA cup.

As an individual you could

  • make a one-off gift or set up a regular payment
  • go along to one of the local events
  • organise your own event
  • take a collection box for your home or workplace
  • get your club, pub, employer or community group to support the foundation
  • choose Freddie Farmer Foundation as your benefiting charity
  • take part in a challenge event
  • make a gift to the Freddie Farmer Foundation in your Will
  • your time and skills can really help our work, why not consider volunteering

Freddie Farmer is an unusual charity, not because of it’s field of work but because, “All the money we raise go 100% back to fund the centre; there are no paid executives or fund-raisers, everyone, except the staff that administer treatment, are volunteers.”

You can find the Freddie Farmer Foundation on Twitter, Facebook and, of course, their website!

Passionate People – Steve & Anne Brandreth

It is obvious that Steve and Anne Brandreth are committed to making their community a better place and, using their farm shop as a hub, they do a much as they can to make this happen.

SteLogove and Anne run Layhams Farm Shop as a family business and they are supporting Bromley Brighter Beginnings (BBB) as their nominated charity this year. They have collection boxes in the shop but also act as a drop off point when BBB put out an appeal for specific items.

Their annual Charity Fund Day & Easter Egg Hunt is on 26th March and there are lots of Family Fun Dayactivities for children to take part including getting up close and personal with some reptiles!

The day also sees the launch of the new toddler play area along with the revamped tea room and it is hoped that it will become a community hub. A notice board will be in place to announce local events and as a space for local groups etc. to advertise. It’s hoped that local groups will use the tea room as a venue and the Brandreths want to do all they can to support that. Holiday workshops for children and adults are already at the planning stage.

For the last two years Steve and Anne have invited all local PTAs, Church groups & local charities to be part of their Christmas Give Back scheme. It basically means that when somebody buys a Christmas tree they can give a voucher to a charity or group and Layhams Farm then donates £5 to that charity – buy a tree, give a good cause a fiver! In 2015 the scheme raised £535 for the community and more local charities and schools are being encouraged to sign up for this year! Some play centres and residents associations have had trees donated to them also which is simply a lovely thing to do.

As well as helping the human community the animal residents of Foal Farm are the grateful recipients of a weekly gift of fruit and veg from the shop!

I don’t think anybody can deny the passion for community that Steve and Anne have and it seems that they run the business as a sideline to the great work they do for the local community!

You can follow the shop on Twitter for regular updates of their brilliant input into the community.

Charity of the Week – The Breast of Bromley


There are around 50,000 cases of breast cancer in women diagnosed each year and on top of that about 350 men also receive a diagnosis. Currently more women and men are surviving breast cancer but more are being diagnosed than ever before and, thanks to local charities such as The Breast of Bromley, that the hope that all breast cancer can be diagnosed and cured is becoming more of a reality.

In their own words, the Breast of Bromley is, “a fabulous, regional volunteer group” and since it was started by the passionate Debbie Lock it has raised in excess of £70,000!

Churchill BOB

Debbie ran a marathon way back in 2011 and has since trekked in Tanzania to raise funds for The Breast of Bromley. Two new members of the team are doing the London to Brighton cycle run this year. Not all of their fundraising activities are quite so strenuous though so take heart if you’d like to take part in any of them!


One volunteer goes into the chemotherapy ward at South Darent Hospital to do simple things like painting somebody’s nails because boosts to physical appearance can boost mood and resilience.

Chislehurst Golf Club has adopted the Breast of Bromley as their charity of the year and are provided much needed funds and thus providing support and hope to women and men who have breast cancer.

Breast Cancer Now are the national charity that Breast of Bromley raises funds for but, because of their volunteer work in Bromley and Kent, they have the attitude of a local charity and focus on their local community.

The next big fundraiser is the Pink Party which is held at The Warren in Hayes on May 21st. Tickets are £45 each and it’s the must go to party of the year! If you can’t make it then perhaps you can sponsor a prize? £20 will provide a prize to go into a balloon to be popped on the night – can you donate a gift or service, e.g. a haircut, car valet, lunch for two, afternoon tea or even an ironing session or some home cleaning?


The Breast of Bromley can be contacted via their website, Twitter account or Facebook page so why not check them out and, at the same time, check your breasts!

Charity of the Week – Bromley Brighter Beginnings


Inspired by a project in Staffordshire that assisted the parents of young children living in deprived areas, Bromley Brighter Beginnings (BBB) came into being in October 2012 and, in the same month, had their first referral. They provided a woman, living in a refuge in Bromley, with clothes for her baby and since then they have helped hundreds of families.

BBB provides second hand items that have been donated by a network of mums and dads and also provides “newborn packs”. Requests for help do not come directly from individuals but via health professionals, refuge officers and parenting practitioners through a referral system.

“You truly do not understand how genuinely grateful we are….From the bottom of our hearts thank you all so very much

The aims of BBB are simple:

  • to provide new and expectant mums in dire financial need with essential items (such as cots, buggies, clothes, nappies and other toiletries) to ensure they and their children have what they need,
  • to thereby reduce stress, anxiety and depression, which will in turn help their children,
  • to facilitate the recycling of baby- and child-related items that the original owners no longer use.

Since their beginnings in October 2012 BBB have helped around 450 families in the London Borough of Bromley and have provided toys and household items for women and children either living in or moving on from a refuge. During that time BBB has built up a solid network of contacts with professionals so that they can effectively reach the people that need their help.

With their team of volunteers they have set up a website, a Facebook group (please join if you want to help!), a Twitter account and they also produce and distribute leaflets to promote their work to people who wouldn’t necessarily see it online.

Emma Martin, the chair of BBB, was awarded the NCT Parents’ Champion of the Year award in October 2013 for her work in setting up Bromley Brighter Beginnings.

You can read more about BBB on their website, follow them on Twitter and  support them on Facebook!