Local wildlife and insects stand a better chance of survival this winter thanks to a volunteer team from Bradford laundry and chemical manufacturing company Christeyns.
The eight-strong team helped one of the city’s charitable youth and homeless venues to develop its wildlife garden in the grounds of St Stephen’s Church, West Bowling, by building a wooden fence to ensure the grass could grow and the wood piles would be protected for hibernating wildlife.
The project was organised by Bradford-based resources and support charity Participate Projects, which works to regenerate the most deprived areas, supporting individuals and communities. It was a joint operation between the Macmillan Adventure Playground Association (MAPA) and Shine at St Stephen’s, which acts as a shelter for the homeless during the winter months and as a year-round venue for youth engagement and social wellbeing activities. The St Stephen’s Church and grounds contain amenities like an outdoor football pitch and an indoor snooker table.
The Christeyns volunteers were Arianna Hunter, Isabelle Letrez, John Baskerville, Chris Stakes, Chris Reed, Emma Hill and Maureen Burke, led by team leader Steve Wilson.
Arianna Hunter commented on the day:
“What looked like a simple job ended up being a little more difficult due to the amount of bricks and debris under the grass, making digging holes for the posts more time consuming than initially thought. Once we got going though, everyone really enjoyed the task, and thankfully the weather held out for us, too.”
Gemma Harwood is business manager at Participate Projects. She said:
“We do rely very much on volunteers, both individuals and teams, to help us make these community improvements a reality for local people and we are very grateful to Christeyns for their support.”
Where Participate Projects does not have specialist skills, it seeks these from businesses and individuals, such as architects, builders, artists and others. Helping the Christeyns team build their fence on the day was site manager Stephen Woodrow, a local volunteer working with St Stephen’s Church.
“We were all proud of our achievement in the end, especially us girls who had never built a fence in our lives!”