Happy New Year!!

Happy new year!

Here at The Link CT we are reflecting on December 2023 and we wanted to share some statistics with you.

This December we delivered hampers to 523 individuals, had 133 visits to the living room, served 17 New years dinners and we raised £166 with out Christmas hamper raffle.

A massive thank you for all the donations that make it possible to do extra work around Christmas time in particular.

The Living room is officially open!!

The living room is a brand new space brought to you by The Link CT.

You can find The living room at the entrance to the palace hub on the esplanade in Redcar.

It is a warm, safe space for all.

There are many things available to access in the living room including: a warm space, hot drinks, books, games, relaxed environment and support staff.

The friendly staff and volunteers are on hand to provide information about local services, to signpost, and support people into existing LCT services.

The living room is open every week day between 11am and 2pm.

Jessa’s Sahara Desert Trek

Our very brave Jessa has completed her sponsored Sahara desert Trek raising £3500 for The link charitable trust.

Jessa described it as ‘the most terrifying time of her life’.

She said “In the desert I cried every day, the temperature was too hot. It is the first trek I have ever done, and I met a lot of fears in myself, overcame them and practised lots of mindfulness.

Coming back to Redcar in November I was so tired and exhausted, I had the best deep sleep ever. We had walked 65 kilometres over four days with rucksacks in extreme heat. I observed the most beautiful sunrises, and the moonlight over the desert was stunning. I enjoyed the views from the top of a thousand sand dunes and to be by the campfire with my new Sahara friends was priceless.”

Despite being terrified and facing her fears Jessa absolutely smashed the Trek and raised a whopping £3500 for The Link CT.

On her return she spoke to BBC News about her experience and how she sees the benefit The Link CT have in our local community and that kept her going in those scary times.

Well done Jessa – We are all very proud!

The Link Tees Valley Ltd celebrates funding for Youth Social Action

The Link Tees Valley Ltd is proud to have been awarded #iwill funding by County Durham Community Foundation made possible thanks to the National Lottery Community Fund and DCMS.

Following the successful delivery of the first two phases of the #iwill Fund, County Durham Community Foundation is pleased to announce a third round of funding which will prioritise inspiring 10–14-year-olds to get involved in social action in Tees Valley. County Durham Community Foundation will use match funding to double the resources available leading to total funding of more than £1.4m for the programme.

The #iwill movement brings together cross-sector organisations and young people who believe that all children and young people should have the chance to make a positive difference on the issues that affect their lives, their communities, and broader society. The #iwill Fund supports this movement and is made possible thanks to £66 million joint investment from The National Lottery Community Fund and the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS). The #iwill Fund helps create opportunities for young people to get involved in social action by developing their skills and potential, and their communities where they gain the confidence to make a positive contribution.

County Durham Community Foundation, along with fifteen other community foundations from the UKCF network, will award grants of up to £10,000 to groups for projects lasting up to a year. The Foundation aims to fund both new and well-established groups, and to encourage young people who are new to social action, focusing particularly on the 10-14 age range. 

Examples of projects funded in earlier funding rounds include intergenerational volunteering programmes, environmental initiatives and involving young people in the design and delivery of community activities. 

Rosemary Macdonald, CEO of UK Community Foundations commented,

“Young people are the future of our communities. By encouraging 10–14-year-olds to get involved in social action and see the benefits for themselves and their communities, we are creating strong foundations for the future.”

Michelle Cooper, CEO of County Durham Community Foundation, said: “The #iwill movement confirms our view that young people have so much to offer. By funding projects driven by and for young people, we are investing in their confidence and skills as young leaders. I am excited to see this year’s applications, and to watch them come to life.” 

For more information, please contact:
Alison Goulding, communications and development manager for County Durham Community Foundation, on 074779838228.

Christmas Hamper Donations 2022

We collecting donations to make Christmas Hampers for families, young people (aged 16-25) and vulnerable adults of Redcar and Cleveland who may be on their own and struggling at Christmas.

The cost of living crisis has impacted us all and more of our local families and vulnerable young people/elderly are living in poverty and struggling this year than ever before. As of November 10th the number of Christmas Hamper referrals has hit 261 people and is still rapidly growing. Christmas should be a wonderful time of year for all. This year, more than ever, your donations are needed to ensure those in need don’t spend Christmas feeling alone and forgotten. 

We are looking for:

-Age Appropriate Gifts (bath sets, gift sets, toys, colouring sets)

-Toiletries and Hygiene Products

-Christmas Treats (selection boxes, biscuits, chocolate etc)

-Tinned and Non-Perishable Goods

-Supermarket Stamp Cards/Vouchers 

We are also accepting monetary donations. Every Christmas Eve we visit local supermarkets and uses the funds raised over Christmas to provide food hampers (as well as gift hampers) to families in need.


As in previous years we would like to dedicate the care leaver hampers to Julie Donaldson to acknowledge all the support she gave to us for this project.

The Link Charitable Trust awarded a total of £108,000

A charity in Redcar has been awarded £36,000 per annum for 3 years to provide mental health support to children and young people in the Redcar and Cleveland area. The funding is being provided by the UK Youth Fund – Thriving Minds, a new programme being delivered by leading national youth work charity UK Youth.

Earlier this year UK Youth, working in partnership with the Julia and Hans Rausing Trust, launched Thriving Minds, an ambitious fund for projects to improve mental health support and provision for young people through youth work. Organisations will be supported for three years, both with funds and a tailored package of extra support including workshops, training and by building communities of best practice. The initial £10m pot provided by Julia and Hans Rausing has been boosted by an additional £1m from the Westminster Foundation.

The LCT works with children, young people, families and vulnerable adults. Our most significant activity is responding to local needs and to the ongoing development of projects and solutions developed in partnership with parents in our target communities, and then further developed with our partners. Using our first-hand knowledge and ongoing consultation with local children, young people and families, we shape our offer to ensure that those most vulnerable and at-risk people are identified, developed and encouraged to participate, access services, become active and transform their lives. LCT provides local people with support and better equips family and community members to support each other, increasing their social inclusion.

In July 2020, the prevalence of mental health problems in 5-22 year olds went up to one in six, up from one in nine in 2017. This comes at a time when support for young people is suffering. Children are waiting up to three years for access to mental health care in some parts of the UK. In the last decade more than 4,500 youth work jobs and 760 youth centres have closed, as over £1bn funding has been cut from the sector.

Ndidi Okezie, Chief Executive of UK Youth said: “Youth workers can spot the signs that a young person is experiencing difficulties and can support them to open up, talk through what they are going through and seek help if they need it. With a youth support system already on its knees post pandemic we know the numbers of young people that need support from a youth worker are only going to rise as we face the biggest cost of living crisis in a generation. UK Youth are delighted to be able to help fund The Link Charitable Trust, one of almost 100 organisations across the UK improving support for young people over the next three years through their incredible work with young people.”

Maureen Hanley, Project Development Worker from The Link Charitable Trust said: “We are delighted to have secured support from the UK Youth Fund – Thriving Minds. As an organisation supporting young people, we have seen first-hand the impact of the pandemic and other issues on the mental health of children and young people. More and more young people are reaching crisis point and turning to us for support. This funding will allow us to provide support to young people aged 14 to 25 years with emotional wellbeing or emerging mental health problems.”

For more information about the UK Youth Fund – Thriving Minds, visit www.ukyouth.org.uk/thriving-minds

For more information about The Link Charitable Trust visit thelinkct.org.uk or follow us on social media.

Jessica Trek’s The Sahara Desert

Our very own Jessica Brown is trekking across the Sahara Desert in November to help raise funds for The Link Charitable Trust. Jess has worked with The LCT since August 2020 as a Children’s Wellbeing Worker and is passionate about mental health support.

She will be trekking during the day and camping during the night over four days. The Trek will be challenging as she will be walking through the Desert carrying her belongings in a large rucksack during the day where the temperatures are around 30’C and she will be camping during the night where the temperature will drop to around -10’C. The terrain of the desert which is very sandy and undulating will also make the trek challenging.

Jess said ‘Mental health support is important to me, being able to support others through tough times in their life, supporting children, adults and families to see hope and that there is a light at the end of the tunnel. The Link Charitable Trust provides this support on a daily basis for the people in our local area and without the help of donations they would not be able to continue to provide this much needed service.’

If you would like to support Jess’ fundraiser head to https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/jessica-treks-the-sahara and don’t forget to share it with all of your friends and family!

Good luck Jess!!

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