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Project information

halow project: Fit for Life programme

Fit for Life is designed to improve the mental, physical and emotional wellbeing of young people with learning disabilities in Surrey. Many young people can face severe social isolation and the mental stress that comes with it. We aim to give them confidence, knowledge and skills to get healthy.

The programme operates over a year but outcomes are person-centred

Charity information: halow project

halow project logo
  • Need


    Many young people who access halow's services are in the period of transition from children's to adult services. It is important to recognise that after leaving school or college a proportion of young people with learning disabilities tend to withdraw and stay at home having been used to a very structured routine. Young people with a learning disability are a vulnerable group and at high risk of social isolation.


    Fit for Life is designed to improve the mental, physical and emotional wellbeing of young people with a learning disability in Surrey. We introduce them to a range of social and therapeutic activities, offering regular sessions that prevent loneliness, allowing young people of the same age to make friendship groups and feel part of a community. They will have a rich experience of meaningful activities that provide structure to their lives, help to build confidence and gain social interaction.

  • Aims

    Aim 1

    Connect young people with each other & enable them to feel part of their community


    » BOWLING: Young people meet peers in their age group, gain social confidence & learn to understand the importance of teamwork.
    » LLAMA TREKKING: Provides therapy for young people with complex communication needs and inhibited social confidence.
    » COMMUNITY BASED ACTIVITIES: All activities are based locally to ensure young people feel confident accessing local assets.

    What success will look like

    Young people work towards their own person centred plan with a target of meeting up with other young people outside of halow activities and to connect with local community groups.

    Aim 2

    Provide activities for young people that build confidence & teach life & employability skills


    » COOK & GROW: Young people learn how to grow their own food and how to cook it, using a community kitchen to create recipes with their produce.
    » CREATIVITY: In Craft sessions young people make products out of recyclable materials; including decorations, cards & pottery
    » ENTREPENEURSHIP: Products that are made in activities are sold at local community events

    What success will look like

    We will have a 48 week programme of activity with regular attendance . Young people will be volunteering in the local community and undertaking work experience opportunities.

    Aim 3

    Encourage a healthy, active lifestyle & motivate young people to continue this independently


    » FIT CLUB: Young people exercise in local gyms & work to improve physical health, stamina & strength to enable them to be phyisically fit for work.
    » FIT CLUB: Young people learn to commit to & follow a personal exercise plan with a trainer and chart their progress within their personal gym diary.
    » HEALTHY EATING: Young people learn about the benefits of growing their own food, understand where food comes from and how to create healthy meals.

    What success will look like

    Through the person centred plans and our 121 buddy service we will be able to see whether young people are maintaining a healthy lifestyle and continuing to access the gym.

  • Impact


    Our young people will become active in their community and the wider community will see the value of of young people with a learning disability. Our community becomes reflective of all parts of our society, breaking down the social barriers that exist. Long term outcomes for young people would be measured through person centred plans and could include travelling and living independently, undertaking volunteering opportunities or even being in paid work, dependent on the individual.


    Current challenges in social care funding mean that young people may not be able to afford to access our services and this programme in particular. Or they may not have the funding to be supported to do so. halow has a unique model of funding which includes fundraising. Voluntary donations enable us to heavily subsidise our programmes and services making them accessible for all. Our activities are all supported by trained staff who can support young people enabling them to access this programme.


    Donors will receive our bi-annual newsletter which gives an overall view of the activities and achievements of halow young people. We can provide an anonymised report on outcomes for participating young people giving details of participation levels for activities.

  • Budget

    Budget - Project Cost: £40,249

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      Amount Heading Description
      £18,991 Social Activities Coordinator Manages programme and provides support for young people
      £6,663 Support staff Provides additional support for activities where participant numbers are high
      £717 Venue costs Provision and membership of gym facilities
      £2,236 Venue costs Provision of community space for craft sessions
      £1,000 Venue costs Hire for community kitchen for Cook & Grow activity
      £1,200 Consumables Art materials, tools, seeds, soil and equipment
      £3,000 Specialist facilitators Personal trainer and art facilitator (annual cost)
      £6,442 Activity costs Bowling costs for 50 weeks plus costs for Llama trekking

    Current Funding / Pledges

    Source Amount
    Nominal fees from young people (social care personal budgets) £24,215 Conditional
  • Background


    halow's purpose is to support young people with a learning disability on their journey into & through adult life. The people we support are generally in transition from child to adult services & due to their learning disability unable to access employment. Only 5.8% of people with a learning disability are in employment. halow was registered as a charity in 2006 with the aim of ensuring that every young person with a learning disability has the same life choices and chances as any other person.


    We currently support 170 young people who have a range of different needs, including Down’s Syndrome, Autism, Asperger’s Syndrome, dual diagnoses and severe communication difficulties that affect their everyday lives. Parents, siblings and wider families also benefit with the respite from care and peace of mind that brings. The wider community also benefit as the support we provide puts the young person at the heart of the community, promoting social inclusion & breaking down social barriers.

  • Why Us?

    Why Us?

    Halow offers a unique service which aims to help young people develop their own roadmap to their adult life. Fit for Life will give them a chance to take part in new experiences and learn about the importance of living a healthy, positive lifestyle that they can then put into practice themselves. Halow have proven success at helping young people with learning disabilities develop the skills and confidence needed to live independently and to secure paid employment.

    Read more about the Charity running this project.


    A Care Home In Surrey (Unnamed For Safeguarding)

    Donated allotment space so that we can grow produce. Staff support young people with gardening and cooking.

    A Leisure Centre In Surrey (Unnamed For Safeguarding)

    Provision of gym and sports facilities. Staff support young people with the personal diaries.