We are very pleased to announce that, subject to national lockdown restrictions lifting and reduced local infection rates, our site on Westmill Farm will be opening again from 22nd March. This will be a phased approach, starting with outdoor and gardening activities and maintaining safety measures of 'Hands, Face, Space'. Indoor activities will be phased in gradually when assessed as safe to do so.
We are really looking forward to the year ahead and would like to thank everyone for your continued support and donations during this challenging time.
This month we completed a 'virtual steps challenge', counting our combined steps to walk from London to Paris in time for Valentine's Day. Individual step counts ranged from 1750 steps to over 10,000 steps a day, using pedometers and smartphone apps. Participants have enjoyed the achievement and are now on the way to 'see' the tulips in Amsterdam.
This week we launched our Virtual Lunch Club for our service users, to encourage healthy eating, improve confidence in the kitchen and help reduce loneliness and isolation.
On the menu this week were Minestrone Soup and Poppy Seed rolls. Recipes were sent out in advance and there was a live 'cook-along' demonstration to allow for asking questions, as well as some time for a chat and a laugh. Here are a couple of pictures showing what one service user achieved. Delicious!
Thank you to everyone who bought wreaths from us this year - we are thrilled to announce
you helped us raise over £600 for the project.
After a long time of planning, we were able to install our new log cabin this month. This space will be used in 2021 as a dining area / classroom space for our Service Users. We would like to thank Faringdon Rotary for their fantastic help with applying the wood treatment.
Finally, as we close now for the Christmas period, we would like to wish everybody a peaceful Christmas and hope to see you back at events in 2021!
Whilst we would like to wish everyone a Happy New Year, we are mindful that many people find the festive season a very difficult time. As the uncertainty of the pandemic continues, albeit with a vaccine in reach, it is essential that support for people with enduring mental health needs continues.
After careful consideration to the risks to service users, staff and volunteers, it has been decided to return to remote support for the lockdown period, with ongoing reviews in the meantime.
Root and Branch will give telephone support to service users, helping to manage anxieties, focus on daily routines and goals. We aim to improve online access to continue learning skills such as gardening, crafts, IT, cooking and exercise as well as ensure social networks are maintained using our own group Zoom calls.
Thank you to those of you who supported us in 2020. During this very difficult year, your generosity had made a great difference and we really do appreciate it. But we still need your help, please do continue to support us. There are lots of ways you can help:
- Give a one-off donation with Just Giving (gift aid) to Root and Branch Westmill
- Shop with Amazon Smile
- Set up a monthly standing order
- Get fit and get sponsored
- Hold a cake sale
Please get in touch if you have any questions or ideas about how you can support us.
Wishing everyone a healthy and successful 2021! Stay in touch with us and stay safe.
As we are sadly unable to hold our Winter Fayre this year, we have set up an "Items for Sale" page on our website where you can view handmade crafts we have for sale. We are also taking orders for Christmas wreaths - please contact the office to order on
We are pleased to confirm that Root and Branch will stay open to support our beneficiaries during this difficult time of the second lockdown. This will prevent a deterioration in mental health, as well as relieve loneliness and isolation. Strict Covid protocols are in place to keep everyone safe.
We would also like to say a huge thank you for all your generous donations which we are receiving through our JustGiving page and your ongoing support through Amazon Smile shopping. Thank you, these donations mean so much to us all.
We would like to say a huge thank you to an anonymous donor who has recently donated £500 towards our Just Giving campaign. Your generosity is already making a difference.
We have recently taken the decision to cancel our Winter Fayre due to the ongoing pandemic. However watch this space for alternative fundraising initiatives.
2020 has been a difficult and challenging year so far and, like so many other businesses we had to close our doors temporarily. In the period of closure we were able to continue to provide our support to our Service Users in a remote but truly continual and beneficial way. We are thrilled that we have now re-opened to existing Service Users albeit in a reduced and safe capacity, but wanted to share some of the amazing work completed by Service Users at home during this period.
More beautiful ceramics created here at Root & Branch.
Please do consider supporting us through your Amazon purchases by using AmazonSmile. By nominating us as your charity of choice, 0.5% of the cost of eligible AmazonSmile purchases will be donated.
These beautiful ceramics are an example of the amazing work created here at Root & Branch.
With the help of a European Social Fund Grant, we are delighted to have been able to offer our service users a number of additional short courses in a variety of subjects from gardening, metalwork, ceramics, cookery, PAT testing, creative writing, IT and green woodwork to name a few! These courses have helped increase the confidence of our service users while allowing them to explore and learn new skills. Here are some pictures of work produced.