PHOTO SHOWS FROM LEFT TO RIGHT: Louise Close, Ruth Barnes and Vikkie Wilkinson of Step Forward Tees Valley, Andy Preston Elected Mayor of Middlesbrough, Philippa Golightly and Susan Robinson of Step Forward Tees Valley.
The employability support programme, which is funded by the European Social Fund and The National Lottery Community Fund, has also been highly commended in the Helping People Learn and Improving Our Neighbourhoods categories.
The award and commendations recognise the outstanding contribution that the programme makes in and around the Middlesbrough area, supporting local people to improve their health and wellbeing, learn new personal and work skills and improve their local neighbourhoods through community volunteering opportunities.
Since the programme began in October 2016, it’s supported more than 3,500 people across the Tees Valley, and it’s thanks to the programme's partnership working that they’ve been able to help these people overcome a range of barriers to training, volunteering and work.
In Middlesbrough, Step Forward Tees Valley works in partnership with Groundwork North East & Cumbria, Changing Lives, Pioneering Care Partnership, Middlesbrough Voluntary Development Agency, Mental Health Concern and Middlesbrough Citizens Advice to provide tailored support for people.
Middlesbrough resident Nicky is one person to recently benefit from the programme’s support, after being left devastated by the sudden loss of her eldest son. Unable to cope with life and experiencing depression and anxiety, Nicky couldn’t see a way forward. That was until she started working with Step Forward Tees Valley.
Nicky received tailored support from Groundwork North East & Cumbria, Changing Lives, Pioneering Care Partnership and Middlesbrough Voluntary Development Agency to address her individual needs.
“This project and the wonderful people that I have had the privilege to meet and work with have helped me to start to reclaim my life, and for that thank you will never be enough.”
Nicky joined members of the Step Forward Tees Valley Team at the awards ceremony on Monday evening, including Vikkie Wilkinson, Step Forward Tees Valley Programme Manager
“We were over the moon to hear that we’d been shortlisted for three awards, so to win the Health and Wellbeing award is an incredibly proud moment for everyone at Step Forward Tees Valley. We were also delighted to be highly commended in the Helping People Learn and Improving our Neighbourhoods categories.
“Thanks to funding from the European Social Fund and The National Lottery Community Fund, and support from all our delivery partners, we’re able to make a real difference to the lives of people like Nicky”.
For more information about the support that Step Forward Tees Valley offers, you can visit their website at https://sfteesvalley.co.uk/ or call one of their local navigator hubs for a friendly, informal chat:
Darlington: 01325 525 100
Hartlepool: 01429 363 108
Middlesbrough: 01642 245 895
Redcar & Cleveland: 01642 681 785
Stockton: 01642 607 028