MISSION OF THE MONTH: Blackbird Leys Adventure Playground

Thank you so much for supporting the Blackbird Leys Adventure Playground and for having us as your Mission of the Month. We welcome visitors so if anyone would like to come and see us at work they would be very welcome. We are open during nine weeks of school holidays from 8.00 a.m. to 5.00 p.m. and after school every day from 3.15 p.m. to 5.30 p.m. for 8 to 13 year-olds. A small charge is made for attending but no child is excluded because their parents cannot afford to pay this.

As soon as the children arrive they are very active. Many rush out to play on the zip wire or trampoline, whilst others arrange football games or ask for the mats for rough and tumble, gymnastics, and even use them for den building. We have a small group keen to garden and grow flowers and vegetables. When inside they have a chance to develop their art and craft skills, cooking skills, or to spend time in the quiet room.

As you will know Blackbird Leys is a deprived area and has many problems including addiction and debt. We know from the evaluation sheets we ask children to fill in that BLAP is great fun and enables them to play outside as many do not have their own gardens. It also helps them make new friends. Parents comment on how coming to BLAP has helped their child’s confidence.

Recently we have needed to replace the trampoline surround and its mat. The trampoline is an in-ground one. The children are involved in what donations are used for and this year they have asked that we use the money you are kindly giving us to pay for these two pieces of vital maintenance work. Both parts of the trampoline are now of a commercial standard that had not been developed when we first bought the trampoline. So the maintenance of the trampoline has also improved its quality.
When asked what their favourite activity is the children often list the trampoline.

Your donation means you are providing the children of Blackbird Leys with hours of fun each day. The trampoline is in constant use and we have a member of staff or junior leader to keep an eye at all times. One Junior Leader has been especially good at helping the children on the trampoline whatever the weather. In order to make the experience for the children and young people the best possible we need trained staff and volunteers ready to listen and relate to the children. We train our volunteers and are always on the lookout for more people able to spare a few hours a week. You are welcome to explore this further by phoning our play leader Joey Phillips on 01865 236646 or talking with Gail McLintock who worships with you and is our treasurer.

There are various ways in which people could help. An example would be someone who might help with cycle repair work with
the children, or could do some maintenance work or might be willing to help us build a tree house. Administrative help would also be welcome.

Thank you from all of us for your thoughtfulness in making us one of your charities. Your support does make a difference.

Sue Price
Secretary to the Management Committee,  Administrator and Fundraiser