Community Project

Sleep Easy Update

Preperation is key. 

YMCA Teesdale’s FIRST ever sleep easy is over with. Thank you to our fantastic participants who braved the freezing temperatures and everything that mother nature could throw at them. We have been able to raise close to £2,000 (on the night), a wonderful amount thanks to the generosity to all those who sponsored our brave (non) sleepers. Support from the community and businesses has been truly brilliant.


Posts on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram have received comments such as this from Kyle

“I’m so happy to see the YMCA doing stuff like this it’s amazing well done to all the workers and especially the men and women raising awareness and giving up there warm bed #supportingeachother


Katie MacFarlane from The Northern Echo wrote the following piece on Friday (16th March)

“VOLUNTEERS supporting the YMCA charity in Teesdale will be sleeping rough tonight o raise awareness of homeless young people.

The group, which will also be joined by groups in North Tyneside and Ripon, are taking part in the national YMCA Sleep Easy Week campaign.”

the full article can be read here.




Alicia, from Hewitts solicitors said,

“On the 16th March 2018 myself and 10 other participants took part in a Sleep Easy. When I first heard about the event I thought how hard can it be? You go to sleep outside and raise money for the homeless. How mistaken I was. The temperatures dropped to -2 with -6 wind chill. We had to deal with rain, snow and sleet, with nothing but a sleeping bag and a cardboard box. Waking up covered in ice is not a nice experience. People have said to me what an awful night to do this on, my reply, what a good night to do it on, to get the full experience of what some PEOPLE have to deal with 365 days a year.


By far the hardest element of the event for me was, not dealing with the cold but hearing people leaving the local pubs not knowing what reception you were going to get when they see you. We could hear them coming for what seemed like an age and then they were gone, and the relief when they passed us by without any disturbance was a real eye opener.

Many people believe to sleep rough is simply sleeping on the street, begging for money for food and a hot drink, but don’t consider the effect of not knowing if you’re going to be safe has on you. Not many people have had to deal with this, as we lock ourselves in our nice warm houses where we are safe.”



Katie from The Northern Echo  also produced this article on Monday 19th March

“THE plight of homeless people was brought to the fore on Friday night as volunteers braved the wind, rain and snow while sleeping rough in a church car park.

The 11 participants raised £2,000 for YMCA Teesdale as part of the charity’s national Sleep Easy Week”


A word from Theresa.





Fruitful Communities – the end of a new beginning.

The Fruitful Communities project….

The opening of the orchard – 19th Feb

Fruitful Communities project, saw a group of 10 young people take part in a project of learning about and planting fruit trees and bushes for the community. They have planted a variety of different trees and will be planting a number of fruit berry bushes later on in the coming months.

This is a project that YMCA Teesdale took some selling to the young people of Teesdale as they weren’t keen to get involved in to start with. When I spoke to them today (19th February), after the celebration event, they had really enjoyed the whole experience.

On top of the 5 sessions at TCR Hub, the girls have spent many a Wednesday evening with our youth worker, Carla, researching and planning different elements of the sessions. They have spent the last 5 months building up to this point.

As we see this project winding down and coming to a close, we look at the sustainability of continuing the work, keeping the links with TCR Hub and ensuring what the girls have started doesn’t start and end, but continues for both themselves, other young people, the community and YMCA.

Not all hard work, playtime too. Thanks to Jonny (Outdoor Pursuits & Facilities Manager TCR Hub) for keeping the young people safe on the water.

Fruitful Communities will also hold a special place in my heart. This is the first project that as Operations Director, we started and finished since I have started at YMCA Teesdale. It is a project close to my heart, not only for this reason but because it is one that supports a number of causes that I believe in; young people being part of the community and not a problem in it and because the project was focused around the benefits to the environment.

I am incredibly proud of what the young people have achieved in such a short space of time, proud of the youth work team, Carla in particular, for supporting the girls and dedicating so much time to the planning and delivery of the project. To the team behind the scenes, the volunteers from both YMCA and TCR Hub that supported the project.

This project has seen YMCA and TCR Hub work together to deliver a project that not only benefits the young people involved but the community and both organisations. I cannot speak for the team at TCR Hub, though for me, it has been a mutually beneficial and worthwhile partnership, one that I hope continues. It has seen the two organisations work together to overcome barriers for the project, look at sustainability of the work together and deliver a valuable project.

Partnership working is an important part of the work we do in Teesdale, we are all in this together and to ensure we serve the community in the most relevant, sustainable way.

Rachel Dyne, Operational Director.


%d bloggers like this: