Leeds Homeless Charity wins Young People's Award
On top of winning Gold in the Large City category at the RHS Britain in Bloom 2012 Awards Ceremony, Leeds had a second reason to celebrate when they were announced joint-winners of the RHS Britain in Bloom Young People's Award.
This award is given to the finalist(s) deemed to involve young people from across the community in the best way and this year went to St George's Crypt, in Leeds and the town of Stone in Staffordshire. St George’s Crypt is a charity that has been providing care and support for homeless, vulnerable and disadvantaged people since 1930.
The grounds are maintained to a fantastic standard with all the work being carried out by those who are staying there and those in need of the help that is willingly given.
Most young people who find a place to sleep at St George's Crypt, are expected to share in the work of maintaining the grounds. Be it dead heading, or clipping, everyone is involved.
Chief executive Chris Fields explained: “The theme is nurture, and we offer either catering or horticulture. Anyone who comes here is offered 15 hours of personal development to see if they like it, and at the moment we have six ex-offenders and six ex-addicts on the scheme.
“I don’t believe in the Playstation/pool table culture. Getting back to nature really suits certain individuals, who wouldn’t benefit from sitting in a room with a group of people talking about their problems. For addicts, especially, it can be helpful, because they can measure their progress against the growth of the plants and the passing of the seasons."
Jon Wheatley, RHS Britain in Bloom judge, said: "Absolutely first class project to a high standard. Innovative, creative and a real positive outcome for the young people and wider community. I found it a humbling experience."
Richard Gill, Horticultural and Floral Initiatives Officer, said: "We're really delighted St Geroge's Crypt won this award. It entered Leeds in Bloom for the first time this year and successfully gained a medal - we were more than happy to nominate them for the prestigious RHS Britain in Bloom judging tour in Leeds."