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Friday, 20 January 2012

It's 2012...

Happy New Year to all our friends both old and new!
Like any community, L'Arche Inverness is not unique to experiencing change but in 2011 it seemed like we had experienced more than what we could have ever expected. Stretched finances led the community to a re-structuring of the Co-ordination, Workshop and Admin teams but despite these changes which have been difficult at times, the community has experienced a lot of good in 2011 as well.

Our Candle Workshop which is led by Caroline Tulloch has grown with great success and candle sales are at the highest they've ever been! With these record sales there has also been much excitement and support from Anne MacLeod and those employed at 'Dickson's of Inverness' to name but a few. Dickson's car garage have particularly done us proud with their continuous support as they manage to purchase high quanities of candles every week to give away with every new car that they sell. Not only this but the Dickson boys - Jim, Innes, Iain, Mike and Frazer - also support the community by popping into see us and became guest judges at our annual Halloween Party! . . . Innes even gave us a welcomed donation from the money he raised from swimming Loch Ness. The community could not thank these men enough!

Last year, the Candle Workshop also adopted a young soldier called Stephen through the 'Shoe Box Appeal' and had a fantastic time drawing and writing cards for him while he was away serving in Afganistan. Unfortunately near the end of last year we received news that he was injured in Sangin while on patrol but thankfully after being flown back to the UK he managed to fully recover.

The Garden Workshop were granted funding by the Lottery Fund to set up a new poly-tunnel project in the grounds of Braerannoch. The poly-tunnel is going to wheelchair accessible so that service users, core members and customers can pick the herbs and plants that will be grown and sold from there once the poly-tunnel is completed which was quite an exciting project to apply for. The garden craft projects have also been a great success last year and the success is continuing on this year with their wreaths which are made with leaves. They really do look amazing and as this is written they are commencing on the new heart wreaths just in time for Valentines Day!

The houses have had a lot of excitement in 2011 but none can top the addition of Hayley Bell, a new core member to MacTalla! Hayley joined the MacTalla family early last year and since then has brought so much fun, happiness and excitement to the house. We have been lucky to welcome a young lady who is so wonderful and gifted to our community! :)

In Braerannoch, nearly all of the core members requested a bedroom swap which happened in the Christmas holidays. It created a lot of excitement for everybody and everyone seems to be happy with their new improved bedrooms.

For 2012, the community hopes to make full use of our community blog and in the lead up to June (when Holly Hiles and Tracey O'Mara will be flying to Atlanta to join other L'Arche representatives from all over the world) we will be up-dating you all on our fundraising events and totals!
As a community we look forward to keeping in touch with all the friends of the community.
Best Wishes :)