Help us create more happiness by ‘growing some sunshine’ this spring

As the sun is starting to peak through the clouds and we start to feel the warm sunshine we immediately feel happy knowing Spring is in the air and Summer is on the way.

Shannon* is 11 years old and is a young carer for her Mum, who is immobile and lives with diagnosed physical and mental health conditions. Despite her young age, and as an only child, she has to carry out domestic jobs at home and in her community to support her Mum – such as shopping and anything physical within the home. In addition, the family live below the UK poverty threshold and opportunities for fun, friendships and activities are extremely limited.

Our Break Leaders noted that Shannon was very nervous about the prospect of having to make new friends. However, within one day of her break, she managed to form a wonderful friendship with another girl, and this then grew her confidence throughout the week. Eventually these friendships “developed into a little family”; one Break Leader said, “It was so lovely to see Shannon so confident in an area that she had been so nervous about before arriving”.

At the end of the week, Shannon said “You are all my stars of the day. I wouldn’t normally talk to any of you, but I’m glad I did, because you are all really kind and now my little family”.

Shannon was able to return to her home life with a spring in her step and a little sunshine, having had a break from being a young carer, enjoying making memories and new friends that last a lifetime.

Let us not forget that while there is a hint of warmer weather, it’s still chilly, especially at night. We know our children live in households that will be struggling to afford the bills. With heating costs set to rise to unthinkable levels, let’s hope Spring comes early and they can feel the warmth. Certainly, those coming on breaks with us will be warm and well fed, with plenty of games to play, and if they need warm clothes and wellies, we keep plenty in store for those who turn up with very little (and there are always some that do!)

This year our breaks are more important than ever. Many of the children that are coming to visit us live in poverty. They don’t have access to a garden or any open space. Lockdown has damaged their mental and physical health.

Donate today and you will receive a free packet of happiness in the form of sunflower seeds.  Grow a beautiful sunflower and remember how you have helped us give the gift of happy memories to a child on a break.  As the sunflowers grow, the days will stretch longer and by the time your sunflower is taller than you more children like Shannon will be at Go Beyond, growing their own confidence and happiness away from the stresses they face at home.

Our ‘Grow Some Sunshine’ campaign is all about bringing families and communities together to grow so get your friends and families to sign up to our newsletter and claim some free sunflower seeds.   Please claim your free sunflower seeds using the link below.

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