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Project information

Changing Lives

To provide personalised, meaningful and practical activities and support to people with special educational needs, learning disabilities, and/or behavioural issues. Our social enterprise connects individuals with the local community while helping them to achieve their full potential.


Charity information: The Phoenix Trust (Milton)

The Phoenix Trust (Milton) logo
  • Need


    People with special educational needs can lack confidence and self-esteem. After the sudden end of formal education they find fewer chances for further learning or training, limiting their personal development. Many do not have the opportunity to work or socialise and become isolated and marginalised within the community.


    We help people grow to their full potential and improve their quality of life. The varied work in our social enterprise helps them gain skills, interact with members of the public, socialise, and increase self-confidence. Through meaningful activities we give people a feeling of being valued. The mix in ages and abilities creates a diverse community; allowing individual to socialise and meet new people. We promote and develop a range of transferable basic, life, and work skills.

  • Aims

    Aim 1

    Provide practical training, skills development and related learning development opportunities


    » Practical factory work to make and sell concrete paving slabs and garden ornaments. Learning about health & safety, team work and customer service.
    » Practical woodwork making wooden furniture & wildlife items. Learning about health & safety, team work & individual responsibility, customer service.
    » Practical cooking to plan, make and serve a meal to everyone on site. Learning about health & safety, team work, food hygiene.
    » Practical gardening, growing fruit and veg for our kitchen, & plants to sell. Learning about health & safety, team work & individual responsibility.

    What success will look like

    Success will be shown by:
    Increased or sustained trainee numbers, both overall and in our different departments. Records of items made and quality achieved. Personal feedback.

    Aim 2

    Provide basic and life skills


    » Embeded learning within all departments to develop communication, literacy, numeracy, ITC, as well as life skills such as independent travel
    » Explicit training in a range of areas, such as work sheets on basic skills, use of money, food hygiene etc.

    What success will look like

    Success will be shown by:
    Records of achievements in personal development folders. Completed work sheets. In house certification. Personal feedback.

    Aim 3

    Provide accredited qualifications


    » Support to complete a nationally recognised qualification (ASDAN) in employability, with other aspects as required.

    What success will look like

    Success will be shown by:
    Completed coursework and succesful external moderation.

  • Impact


    An increased sense of self-worth in individuals with special educational needs. A reduction in their isolation. A reduction in the wider community of the stigma associated with learning disabilities. Increase in skills and oppotunities for those with special educational needs.

    Success will be shown by:
    Records of acheivement. Personal feedback from trainees. Increased public access to our site.


    A reduction in social funding from statutory authorities to people with learning disabilities. We have a contract with the local authority's Learning Disability Partnership and there is an increased use in individual budgets, allowing Phoenix to continue to provide a range of training and opportunities.


    We are happy to provide individual reports as required to major donors and to welcome representatives on site. Our annual return to the Charity Commission is publically available.

  • Budget

    Budget - Project Cost: £101,000

    Loading graph....
      Amount Heading Description
      £70,000 Salaries Cost of staff salaries
      £9,000 Property Rent, rates, utilities
      £12,000 Direct costs Materials, equipment, etc.
      £10,000 Other overheads Insurance, maintenance, staff training, etc.

    Current Funding / Pledges

    Source Amount
    Charitable trading £25,000 Conditional
    Other grants £10,000 Conditional
    Contracts £55,000 Conditional
  • Background


    The Phoenix Trust is based in Milton, on Cambridge's northern outskirts. The overall affluence of the surrounding area neither mitigates nor reflects the social isolation and stigma faced by our individual service users. We have been on our site for ten years. During that time we have built, and are continuing to develop, good links with both the local community and other social enterprises in the area.


    Local people with special educational needs, local special needs schools, and young people with special educational needs in local mainstream schools.

  • Why Us?

    Why Us?

    A charity, and a company limited by guarantee since 1996, we have developed a model of best practice in the field of supported work experience and training for people with special educational needs. We have a long-established relationship as a service provider with Cambridgeshire County Council. We are an accredited ASDAN teaching centre. Our experienced staff are dedicated to the training and support of young people and adults with special educational needs.

    Read more about the Charity running this project.


    Jude Tustian