BOSP - Top Team Winner
The initials stand for Brighter Opportunities for Special People. BOSP is a very small charity working out of Pitsea. They provide respite to disabled young people and children from all across ESSEX. BOSP aim to provide a fun and safe environment, with the opportunity to try new activities, and meet up with others. It also allows families to have some respite from caring, and perhaps allow other siblings some time with their parents. The effect on the young person attending, and the whole family, cannot be underestimated. They survive on charitable donations and work above and beyond their remit.
The family of one young girl wrote:
‘Thank you BOSP you make a big difference to our lives’
Brightlingsea Winterfest - Highly Commended
This is an event held in Brightlingsea, throughout February, called WinterFest. It makes the whole town come alive with a huge range of activities including music, arts and crafts, comedy, film, and spoken word. The festival was started five years ago to help community spirit flourish and to dispel winter gloom. It has gone from strength to strength. Funds raised are shared between the mental health charity MIND and a new WinterFest Wellbeing Fund which gives grants to people in the town to help them take part in activities that will improve their mental and physical health. The first round of grants of £2,000 has just been awarded. WinterFest is run entirely by volunteers, to date over £20,000 has been raised for the great causes.
Lazy Sunday Salsa Crew - Highly Commended
Lazy Salsa Sunday is an event made by Salsa dancers for Salsa dancers, it began as a once a month meet in Epping on a Sunday afternoon. The crew, Steve, Darren, Nina, Steve, Teri King and Roger give up their own time to set up and run the event. They usually arrive at midday and often don’t get finished until 7.30pm. They became so popular that two years ago they had to move to a larger venue in North Weald. Dancers come from all over Essex from Clacton to Southend, and as faraway as Bedford and even Bristol. The entrance fee and money raised from the sale of homemade cakes is donated to local charities. The last two years donations of £1500 were made to Haven Hospice for children, and St Elizabeth's Hospice. They also donate to a charity nominated by the dancers. This year as well as their usual charities the crew presented a cheque to the RBL for £1200 for the poppy appeal, as some of the crew and dancers are British forces veterans.
Cool to be Kind - Highly Commended
Brian McGovern is co-founder of this
community organization, which supports rough sleepers throughout Essex. They carry out regular outreach on a 100% voluntary basis, serving food, supplying essentials such as sleeping bags and toiletries. Thousands of items have been distributed; they also offer advice and support. Brian has made regular TV and radio appeals to highlight the plight of rough sleepers, and is now advising Chelmsford City Council on issues relating to them. Cool to be Kind have an educational department giving regular assembles to educate the pupils in the danger of rough sleeping. Cool to be Kind are responsible for raising £1000's in order to purchase items that they can distribute to their service users. They work tirelessly to help the vulnerable. Brian is currently unemployed yet he gives hours of his time every week. You will often see him and his volunteers, in the center of Chelmsford
checking on the guys and girls on a human level.
Cool to be Kind has been responsible in getting many service users off the street.
Phoenix Ward Broomfield Hospital - Highly Commended
Every member of staff on the ward goes above and beyond. The house Keepers, Play specialists, Nurses, Consultants, Clerks, everyone makes this ward the
best. In the darkest of days, when being a mum and keeping your child well, is taken out of your control Phoenix Ward is there. When you, as well as your child, are scared they take
the nervousness away. When your child calls the nurses uncles and aunties you know they have a special place in your heart, we see them more than our own family. We have been to many hospitals and had many admissions elsewhere, none compare to Broomfield. Dr Datta has given my son Finley a new lease of life. If you didn’t know it you wouldn’t how poorly he is.
It’s down to these amazing doctors and nurses who fight for you and give the most fantastic care. I trust them with the most precious items I am lucky to have, my children. There isn’t anything more we could do to show how much we appreciate them but a Top team award from the Pride of Essex would help demonstrate our total appreciation.