In tragic circumstances, the Cathie Stankevitch Foundation, was officially launched in 2016, after the accidental death in 2015, in a Road Traffic Accident, of Cathie, a much loved mum, wife, sister, daughter and friend to many.
The Charities aims and objectives are focussed on giving people opportunities to participate fully in society and prevent social exclusion.
A person may become socially excluded for a number of reasons, including through unemployment, financial hardship, youth or old age, ill health, poor education, or due to housing that does not meet basic habitable standards.
Over the past 7 years, the Cathie Stankevitch Foundation has supported hundreds of individuals and families through different activities and projects, with the help of local people who give up their time to help us run our voluntary organisation.
At times, it can be a thankless task, time consuming and frustrating, but also incredibly satisfying to know that our Charity makes a genuine difference for local people.
With the additional help and guidance of our Trustee Board, and with our Charity Purpose in mind, we have been able to adapt to the ever changing needs of the people that we support in the community and we have operated with efficiency in numerous different areas.
GIFTING OF SPORTSWEAR AND SPORTS EQUIPMENT THROUGH OUR RESPORT PROJECT
One of our first projects was run in Widnes Town Centre from our ReSport Charity Sports Shop. Accepting donated and unwanted sportswear and sports equipment from the public directly or through the local network of schools, we clean and in some instances repair items and then gift them to children, young people and adults who are facing sports participation barriers due to not having suitable sportswear and sports equipment.
RUNNING A YOUTH CLUB AND YOUNG PERSONS ACTIVITIES
Prior to Covid-19 the Cathie Stankevitch Foundation ran a Youth Club, providing social sessions for young people and early teens. Activities included games nights, movie nights and also specific fun sessions based around health and beauty, stranger danger, and fire safety. We had regular sessional support from the local Police and local businesses who led activities where the children learnt new skills. This ran for over 2 years and regularly attracted over 100 children per week.
DELIVERY OF SELF DEFENCE CONFIDENCE BUILDING MARTIAL ARTS SESSIONS FOR PRIMARY SCHOOL PUPILS
Working alongside Master Steve, the Charity put together a programme of sessions which was delivered both in the school environment and also in the Cathie Stankevitch Foundation Youth Club building which was equipped with a matted area for the activities. The objective of the sessions was to build confidence in children that might find themselves low in self esteem and finding it hard to socialise with their peer group. The project was a resounding success with headteachers highlighting the difference in pupils that had taken part.
SUPPORTING THE HALTON CHRISTMAS TOY APPEAL
The Cathie Stankevitch Foundation first supported the Halton Christmas Toy Appeal back in 2017. Providing a van and driver to collect donated Christmas gifts and deliver them to the sorting office. This had a big impact in the early days of the appeal. We have also volunteered time to deliver bags of Christmas gifts to schools for the children, and have provided a drop off point at our Charity shop in recent years. In 2023, we will yet again be supporting the fantastic work that the project carries out across Widnes and Runcorn.
SUPPORTING THE HOMELESS WITH THE PURCHASE OF A MOBILE SOUP KITCHEN
In 2001, the Cathie Stankevitch Foundation saw a Facebook post from the charitable group SKIES, in which there was a request for assistance in purchasing a Mobile Soup Kitchen to support the homeless during the winter months, Their fundraising seemed to have slowed, with only a few donations, so the Charity made a donation of £500 to enable SKIES to purchase the equipment immediately.
We also regularly support both the homeless community and families in need, with food donations.
SUPPORTING THE WIDNES MENS SHED PROGRAMME
In 2020 the Charity worked alongside the volunteers at the Widnes Mens Shed to help them relaunch their programme of activities which included skills workshops, counselling sessions and general social opportunities for men over 50. The Cathie Stankevitch Foundation funded the premises at which the Widnes Mens Shed was relocated and played a significant part in the early growth of the project which saw increasing numbers of men engaging every week.
GIFTING OF HOUSEHOLD GOODS AND FURNITURE TO FAMILIES STRUGGLING WITH THE COST OF LIVING CRISIS
Without doubt our biggest project to date and the one which we believe is having the biggest positive impact on the individuals and families we support. Using household goods donated to us by members of the community and from the properties that we clear, we have been able to gift hundreds of items of furniture away to families that are living in furniture poverty. An ongoing project that is having a significant impact and one we couldn’t run without the support of those who offer us items.