Grant provides funds for fitness equipment at “paradise” Willow Tree Works

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Great Yarmouth Sport and Leisure Trust are pleased to announce a grant has been made to Willow Tree Works in Belton to provide specific fitness equipment for brand new fitness sessions for people with additional needs.

In 2009 a forgotten, neglected piece of land was purchased and the volunteers at Willow Tree Works made what was a neglected area into a garden for people with additional needs. The area was dense with gorse, and all sorts of rubbish, but slowly they cleared it to produce a blank canvas.

The BBC called it ‘a little piece of paradise’ and urged the volunteers to look after this special place. And that is exactly what they have been doing ever since. Over the years it has been built from the ground up and now has classrooms, toilets, chickens and an outside area that is utilised as much as possible, from planting to dog agility workshops!

Willow Tree Works is a unique project, driven solely by the needs of those with disabilities and their carers in the Norfolk and Suffolk area. The project aims to deliver individually targeted skills-based learning that will promote employment potential, along with personal achievements and well-being. The ethos of the garden is summed up in their motto, 'growing stronger together'.

The learners have access to a developing selection of activities which gives them a sense of purpose, increasing their skills base, improving their day to day lives and allowing them to integrate not only with their peers but also working towards a healthier lifestyle. Fitness plays a large part in their ethos and activities and Willow Tree Works is setting up a new fitness class which is open to learners and the wider community. The funds from GYSLT will provide specific fitness equipment for these brand new fitness sessions.

With a high percentage of learners being considered overweight this is a fantastic opportunity for them to work on their fitness, skills and confidence especially with the equipment being provided: Reebok steps, weights and yoga mats.

There are a considerable number of children and adults in the Great Yarmouth area who have learning difficulties. Many have no access to a useful base to spend their days. The activities at Willow Tree Works deliver skills-based learning, and fitness is needed to tackle the projects. Getting fitter with the new equipment which the Trust are helping to fund will help the learners develop their skills and confidence in other projects tackled at the Garden.

If you are part of an amazing project helping your community and would like to apply for up to £500 of funding, then we are taking applications for awarding in November 2019.

Check out the latest fundraising project! The Gofundme page is here