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Project information

Life Skill Cafe Classes

Individuals with addictive/anti-social behaviour &/or mental health issues often lack life skills; however the stigma around their behaviour prevents them accessing traditional courses. They lack self-confidence & need ongoing support in addition to subject matter.

December 2017 - December 2018

Charity information: Spectrum People

Spectrum People logo
  • Need


    Life skills are something most of us learn by example; if an example has never been given to you the life skill is never learnt. Basic skills such as reading, household budgeting, cooking & anger management. Many vulnerable adults are in just this position in Wakefield as elsewhere. Developing life skills brings self-confidence & resilience & helps in recovery - from addiction, criminal activity & mental health issues.


    Cafe classes in a trusted setting already accessed will be provided weekly in short bursts. Participants stories will document their progress developing pride & motivation to continue. Peer support & signposting for other identified needs will engage partner organisations. We already have engagement from around 1000 individuals & need to develop this short-term engagement into developing resilience & a move towards re-integration into local communities.

  • Aims

    Aim 1

    Develop skills, experience, self-confidence, motivation & well being of vulnerable individuals


    » Set of weekly classes covering range of basic life skills; each topic held over 4-6 weeks in 2 hour long session. Participants per session 6-10

    What success will look like

    Use of Short Warwick Edinburgh Wellbeing Survey at start/end. Stories around individuals. Numbers with continued engagement throughout course.

  • Impact


    Supporting a number of vulnerable people in recovery & along their long journey (research says up to 27 years for this) towards total reintegration into society. Medical/social models cannot provide lasting change; working with partners we can give ongoing support as individuals need it during their long, chaotic journey. Video/written stories will document their progress; books & materials will evidence the overall success.


    Short term commitment - peer support to continue to attend
    Slip into former behaviours - able to re-start class at a later date
    Disruptive behaviour in class - strong ground rules in place
    Tutors unable to continue running class - train up volunteers to run sessions
    Stigma prevents attendance - one to one support to access first session
    Access issues - physical access OK, basic provision overcomes stigma associated with more up-market venues
    Continued support needed - funding bids ongoing


    Charity Log details all numbers
    Regular articles/stories about individuals
    Videos of overall project
    Annual celebration event
    User feedback on developments/changes needed
    User newsletter (articles written by attendees)

  • Budget

    Budget - Project Cost: £7,100

    Loading graph....
      Amount Heading Description
      £2,400 Venue cost Holding weekly classes every Wednesday for one year
      £500 Materials Materials needed for classes
      £1,600 Staff Charity Co-ordinator support
      £500 Volunteer expenses Travel costs
      £500 Refreshments Tea/coffee/biscuits
      £100 Marketing printing posters
      £1,500 Admin data input/analysis
  • Background


    Wakefield city centre; deprived area in south of city, based at Wakefield Sea Cadets building which is to become a community anchor. It has the benefit of one level, with one large room & a number of small classrooms; excellent kitchen onsite & access to indoor/outdoor space away from disturbance of city centre. Has potential for many more activities in one location - little used during day time in the week.


    Vulnerable adults (18+) including those with addictive/offending behaviour; mental & physical health issues; homeless people, anyone who is socially isolated.
    In addition we work with young people through National CItizen Service projects who tell the stories of our projects through video/photos. The cadets will also benefit from the development of their building as a community asset.

  • Why Us?

    Why Us?

    In 2 years we have engaged with over 1000 vulnerable people locally who have interacted with our activities over 10,000 times. Their comments include: Since coming here I have felt more confident and more motivated to do other things. Things I have not done before like going to the theatre, that was a fantastic experience. I have made friends here as I have been feeling so isolated but here I can talk to people who are non judgmental. I believe in myself again

    Read more about the Charity running this project.


    Fran Taylor

    Lead staff member - oversight of cafe and cafe classes; covers risk issues & overall support

    Robin Davey

    Support staff - data collection & analysis & meet/greet

    Ben Cutts

    Volunteer - peer support to other users

    Tony Howell

    Volunteer - peer support to other users/meet & greet