Praxis Care, ‘Garden of Eden’ project won a place on the final list of projects going forward to the public vote for the Big Lottery, People’s Millions Fund, which was held on Tuesday 28th June 2011.
Praxis Care’s ‘Garden of Eden’ proposal hoped to carry out improvements to the kitchen and surrounding garden area at Richmond Community Hall, Derry City. Praxis Care uses these facilities to run education and training courses and day care services for people with learning disabilities, some of whom also have physical disabilities.
To maximize the possibility of the Garden of Eden proposal being successful, there was a real team and community effort put together leading up to the vote. The staff within the Foyle projects worked tirelessly for 2 weeks leading ringing and visiting businesses and companies in the city in the hope to secure their support and vote! The campaign was to finish with a fun-filled music event at the Guildhall in Derry on Tuesday 28th June, which was our voting day.
Louise Lyons (Team Leader) used her considerable local contacts and secured the support of several local businesses who donated both their time and equipment free of charge and without their support, this event would not have been possible. Many thanks therefore to;
- Beresford Ash Garden Centre for donating the beautiful floral displays,
- Rankin Haulage for donating a lorry,
- Unit7Audio Visual for donating the PA system and speakers,
- The Happy Enchiladas and supporting band for the wonderful music,
- Tony McBride who was the compare on the day,
- Sean Whorsky and friends for the face-painting,
- Waterside Centra for providing lunch to service users and staff on the day,
- Derry City Council
- The Roads Service,
- James Kerr and David Campbell in the Verbal Arts Centre,
- Liam Ferguson and John Doherty from Northern Ireland Probation Service,
- Teresa Craig from Radio Foyle,
- Monica Wilson, Volunteer
The event in the Guildhall square was a great success with service users, staff and family members distributing leaflets and delicious treats made by the ‘The Cookie Company’ to the public. Even the sun shone for us!! The grand finale was the release of 150 balloons in the Praxis Care colours to great cheers from the crowd.
Unfortunately, the ‘Garden of Eden’ proposal was not successful much to everyone’s disappointment. The experience was however really positive for everyone involved and we will continue to work together as we are still determined to have a Garden of Eden here at Richmond Hall.
Finally, we would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone within Praxis Care who advised, supported and voted for us, in particular Geraldine Andrews and Paul Collins. It was very much appreciated.
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