Author: Emma Williamson

News

Thank You

We would like to take this opportunity to thank Copeland Community Fund, who have supported Calderwood House since its inception. They have not only provided us with the capital which enabled us to build our hostel but also provided us with funds towards our staffing costs. We are very lucky to have such an amazing organisation supporting our project and helping us fight against homelessness in Copeland.

 

News

Wake up and smell the coffee

It’s 5am. It’s dark and I’m barely awake. I walk into Calderwood House to the smell of fresh coffee where I’m met by Dean. Dean has been a resident at Calderwood House, Egremont for almost two months. Already, the Time to Change project at Calderwood House has helped scores of local people who have found themselves homeless back into housing and employment. Over coffee, I am here to find out more about Dean and how he is turning his life around through the unique opportunities open to him at Calderwood House.

 

I am offered a coffee which I gladly accept. Dean prepares the coffee using a unique blend of Arabica produced exclusively for Calderwood House by a local blender Rinaldo’s Specialty Coffee and Tea. Even at 5am in the morning I can see the care and attention that goes into making the perfect cup as Dean explains,

 

“I’ve been making coffee from the Calderwood coffee van for almost two months now. It’s growing in popularity with local customers. It’s such a great product and all of the profits go straight back into supporting the work Calderwood House do so it’s a big motivation to get me up and out early…”

 

The coffee tastes great and the extra shot which Dean has slipped in there is greatly appreciated. I’m impressed at how well made the coffee is, so it is a surprise to learn that Dean has only been training for a couple of months,

 

“I knew nothing about coffee making or being a Barista or anything like that before I came to Calderwood House. I have learnt so many new skills that I can take with me when I leave. I have also proven to myself that I am ready to go back in to work in spite of my own personal difficulties and it’s greatly increased my confidence level.”

 

As I peer into the van past a range of snacks, drawn ever deeper inside by the smell of freshly ground coffee beans, I notice how spotlessly clean the Calderwood House coffee van is,

 

“Cleaning isn’t a chore for me,” Dean explains “in fact I enjoy doing it I find it very therapeutic and it gives me a sense of pride in the coffee van and the product we offer.

 

I feel a real sense of responsibility and it is also nice to meet so many new people. I have been able to get involved on the commercial side, you know like looking for new ways to increase revenue and I’m always looking for additional sites for our van to introduce our coffee to new customers.”

 

Volunteering for this community project has helped me rebuild myself and my confidence in myself as well being able to give something back to the community.”

 

Asked about the future for Calderwood’s coffee van project Dean jokes, “my aim is to establish a whole fleet of vans across Cumbria I don’t want anyone to miss out on our coffee!

 

To buy our exclusive blend of coffee please visit: www.calderwoodhouse.co.uk/coffee/  or call: 01946 439312

 

Article produced for time to change, Calderwood House by resident Leigh Johnson.

News

Afternoon Tea Fundraiser Photos and Quotes

First and foremost I would like to thank Julie-Anne Kelly and her team of volunteers for all their hardwork and dedication. The event was truly spectacular and the money raised will be utilised to support both Calderwood House and Rose Hill Youth Theatre. We are honoured that during these hard times when funding is scarce, that Julie-Anne included our project in her bid to raise funds for local projects. All the guests had some beautiful things to say about both organisations so below are just a few photographs and quotes from the guests. 

Julie-Anne Kelly and her mother Anne are a true inspiration, the work they have done to ensure Solway Hall remains open for the public is amazing. Louise Reid

Calderwood House is an amazing place that provides real change for its residents. 

My niece attends Rose Hill Youth Theatre and her confidence has grown tenfold. Claire Jones

I am proud to support both projects as they both offer something back to our local community. 

We both support the work the staff do at Calderwood House raising awareness of homelessness and helping those less fortunate. Barbara Armstrong and Maureen Graham.

We are here to support both projects which have given positively to the community. Claire and Vicky.

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Residents Testimonial

Residents Testimonial

I was raised in West Cumbria on a council estate where I resided with my sister and our abusive mother. For the majority of my childhood my father remained absent. I’m not looking for sympathy, this is just the way it was. This upbringing lead me to being involved in the local gangs, as they provided me with the family I was looking for. However, by a stroke of luck my grandma got me a job with a local builder as a block paver, I did this for several years. My outlook on life and my mentality during this time was not very nice and I had begun to drink heavily and use steroids. I was your typical Saturday night thug. Due to better understanding, I know this was my way of dealing with the pain, rejection, humiliation and low self esteem I felt from my childhood years.

In 2006 I joined the Army, it had been my plan at 18 but having a good job, girlfriend and young daughter, I had put it off. After the relationship had finished I joined as a Kingsman in the 1st Battalion Duke of Lancashire regiment. The army gave me the family and respect I had been looking for and with the added bonus of a decent wage; I loved it. I was “army barmy” I loved soldiering and I had found my calling, I spent 5 happy years travelling around the world, visiting places like Canada (twice), Belize, Dubai, Germany, Kuwait, USA, Cyprus, Qatar and United Arab Emirates. I also undertook a tour of Iraq.

In 2010 I deployed to Afghanistan as a rifleman/mortar man, we were based in a small patrol base in  Nadie Ally South where I spent 7 months. During this time, we come under heavy contact and the battalion started to lose men and suffer serious casualties, in total we suffered 3 dead, 2 amputees (one of those a triple) and a few dozen shot. Many Taliban were also killed.

On my return to the UK I felt different, I can’t explain how but I had it was like a part of me had died. After the “honey moon” period in which I spent 25k in 3 months, reality really hit me hard and things started to go wrong. I was no longer interested in anything. I had lost my drive, my motivation and love for life. I had started to have dreams and flashbacks and suffer from hyper vigilance which left me in a constant state of alert.

Again, I started to drink heavily to help me sleep and take the edge off the hypervigilance. I no longer cared about my career or personal appearance and I was just existing.

I left the army in 2012 after a long and messy discharge, during which I went to Colchester military jail twice, for AWOL. After my last stay in Colchester they picked up on my P.T.S.D but I had already signed my discharge papers and I had left the army. It was not until 2014 that I was officially diagnosed but by then it was way beyond my own self-control. Drinking heavily and poor mental health led me to get into a lot of trouble, leading me to spend 2 years out of the last 3 in prison including a year straight. On leaving prison I came to CalderWood house for the first time and spent 5 week here, I then moved to Centenary Close in Maryport, a place for veterans. I had a nice flat and was undergoing counselling. I was still battling my demons.

I had an interview with combat stress in September, this lead me to a drinking binge which lead to a very violent incident in Maryport where I was staying (a large street fight) and I was sent back to prison.

Normally I would only care about how much gym I can fit into my time but on this occasion, I started a 12-step programme and it opened my eyes to myself. I received letters from Rachel Holliday and my daughter which they kept me going. The judge gave me a chance and gave me a 3-year community order and I come back to CalderWood.

I now fully understand and appreciate the chance I now have at life. I am involved with combat stress and now have a date to attend their 6-week rehabilitation course in Ayr in Scotland. I see my daughter regularly, we go swimming and bowling and speak every day, she is my world.

I plan on doing my COTS card, which is the first scaffolding ticket as that is what I want my future career to be. Thanks to the support from Calderwood House I do believe my future is more positive and I look forward to moving on with my life.

Anon

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Residents Testimonial

Chris Lloyd- Resident

I joined the 7th Parachute regiment in 2006 and moved to Colchester to begin my army career. During my career I visited many places including Kenya and Belize. I loved the army as we were a family that always looked out for each other.

In 2011 I decided to leave the army to be able to spend more time with my fiancé and children. I found adapting to civilian life difficult and challenging. My youngest son was born sixteen weeks premature, which put a huge strain on our relationship.

In 2015 my relationship broke down and I suffered from depression and I found myself homeless. After moving from place to place and never having anywhere to call home I decided to move back to Cumbria with my brother. However this did not work out and that brings me to moving into Calderwood House.

Calderwood House gave me the support and encouragement I needed to begin to rebuild my life. I know have a new found confidence and feel that my future is a lot brighter. I have enrolled on two separate training courses and I am looking forward to moving on into independent living. I am so grateful for all the support the staff and the local community have given me. Calderwood House is unbelievable and I have never experienced such kindness, compassion and support.

 

 

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Residents News

 

I found out about a project where participants had the opportunity to develop a business idea under the amount of one hundred pounds. I came up with the idea of a car valeting service. I planned and researched my business idea and then was invited to pitch my idea to the Directors of Calderwood House.

The Directors were very pleased with my plan and offered their full support and guidance to making my idea a reality. I was then invited to attend a three day business start up course at Energus Lilyhall.

I have now completed the course and feel extremely confident and excited in moving forward with my business plans. I cannot thank the team at Energus, Calderwood House, the Chamber of Commerce, the European Union funding and the Big Lottery Peoples Project enough. This is an opportunity of a lifetime and I now believe anything is possible with hard work, dedication and the right support.

Amy Fowler