MARK THOMAS, MARK STEEL & FRIENDS - FRIDAY 14th June 2013 - COMEDY FUNDRAISER FOR HFS
Our patron Mark Thomas organised an amazing line-up of talented comedians; Mark Steel, Josie Long, Sir Ian Bowler MP, James Acaster, Ivor Dembina and Tiffany Stevenson for this fundraising evening at De La Warr Pavilion in Bexhill.
We are very grateful to all the comics, to every supporter that bought a ticket, to the venue staff who worked hard to make the evening great for everyone, and to the local businesses that donated items for our goodie bags to thank the comedians for giving up their Friday night to help us.
The event raised funds for HFS training in the community, particularly our work running DIY and craft sessions at Refuges in East Sussex.
TOWN HALL CELEBRATION FOR HFS FURNITURE RESTORERS
A group of proud local learners collected their certificates from Mayor Mrs Gadd at Bexhill Town Hall.
The group completed a 10 day furniture restoration qualification at HFS Bexhill’s training workshop and their finished work was on display for friends and family to see. Items in a poor state of repair that have been collected from local householders by HFS for reuse are restored to their former glory by the students who get to take their work home at the end of the course.
The course is run in partnership with Sussex Coast College Hastings and is free for people in receipt of means-tested benefits such as JSA or ESA. Several of the students had not taken on any kind of craft or carpentry project before and had thoroughly enjoyed the experience, gaining a huge amount of confidence from the experience as well as making new friends.
HFS runs taster sessions and “pop-ups” so that you can meet the tutors and have a go before committing to the qualification. Find out more or book your place by popping into the store, calling 01424 44 11 12 or on our training information page.
HFS is asking local people who run creative enterprises to fill in a short survey about what they look for in workspace.
We are looking into the feasibility of transforming some of our space in Bexhill into a small hub for the creative sector, comprising units of workspace, a retail outlet and a room for classes and meetings.
Please share this survey link with anyone who might be interested.
POP-UP CRAFT CLUB
Our tutors will be popping up in Ore this month, running sessions for a group of people who will be able to design their own programme, choosing from a menu of 20 DIY and Craft activities.
There are still a couple of places available so if you'd like to join this group please head over to the training page to find out how.
We'll be hitting more neighbourhoods with this over the next few months - dates and places on the training page and our Facebook too.
Why do people volunteer with HFS? Our volunteers say they enjoy getting out of the house, meeting people, feeling part of a team, working alongside others to complete practical constructive tasks, sharing jokes, games of pool and cups of tea, going out to collections and deliveries, arranging displays in the store, repairing things and knowing that they do make a difference.
Whether you are trying to gain confidence, skills and workplace experience or simply like to be useful volunteering can help you!
We're always pleased to hear from people interested in volunteering, and our Bexhill store particularly needs volunteers at the moment. See our volunteering page for more information and get in touch if you'd like to find out more about joining the team.
COURSES OPEN FOR BOOKINGS!
This year our trainers will be popping up all over the area, running neighbourhood pop-up craft and DIY sessions in partnership with AmicusHorizon Housing Association.
Our short courses and level one qualifications in Furniture Restoration and Redecoration will be available at the HFS workshops in Hastings and Bexhill.
The Training Calendar page has more info and the dates open for bookings.
IMPORTANT DATES THIS MONTH
L-earn deadline for applications: 15th December - if you're 16-17 and you want to start the New Year by getting a job, apply now!
HFS stores will close for the holidays from Monday 24th December and reopen on Wednesday 2nd January.
L-earn is recruiting more young people to earn-while-you-learn in local social enterprises. We have paid jobs with training at Furniture Now stores in Hailsham, Eastbourne and Lewes to be filled early in November.
If you know anyone 16-17 who might benefit from this scheme tell them NOW!
More information and application forms are on our L-earn page here.
GREAT WORK ON SALE
Our workshop team has been hard at it reworking some of the battered furniture donated, bringing it back to life.
The team includes volunteers who have completed one of our craft courses and have stayed with us to keep working on their creative and carpentry skills, and L-earn placements who are gaining their first experience of work with training at HFS. We have been able to sustain one of the jobs we created using the Future Jobs Fund to run the workshop, supporting the volunteers and placements.
Here are some examples of their fantastic work. We have several unique hand-painted items currently available to buy at our Hastings store - open to everyone 6 days a week.
OPPORTUNITIES FOR 16-17s
We are recruiting 16-17 year-olds for L-earn jobs with training this month. L-earn is a pre-apprenticeship offering part time paid work with training for young people who want to progress into full-time apprenticeships, work or College.
HFS has worked with other social enterprises to create 30 jobs across East Sussex, including Warehousing, Collections & Deliveries, Customer Service, Reception, IT Refurbishment, Furniture Restoration and Revitalisation.
FUNKY FURNITURE FOR SALE!
Our workshop team have been busy bringing more items back into use. The items are on sale in our stores and we are also looking forward to our first stall in the Care Co-Ops social enterprise market in Brighton's Wagner Hall on 1st September - the city will be especially busy as it's Pride Day!
ECO-FRIENDLY PAINT ON TRIAL
We're proud to have been selected to take part in a national trial of recycled paint! The innovative, premier grade paint is made from reprocessed water-based interior emulsion, blended, coloured and repackaged. HFS has a stock of 5 Litre pots of either Antique Ivory or Natural Oats.
One of the aims of our charity is to enable households to maintain and furnish their homes in the most economically and ecologically sensible way. We already take donations of unused paint from retailers and this trial is providing lots of big pots of neutral colours that our customers have been requesting.
The trial is supported by the national network Community RePaint that encourages the reuse of unwanted, surplus paint for re-distribution to individuals, families, communities and charities in need, improving the wellbeing of people and the appearance of places across the UK.
Proof of receiving benefits or representing a charity is needed to purchase the paint which is available at £9 for 5 litres. Visit the HFS Hastings store in Dorset Place, Hastings or phone 01424 44 11 12 for more information.
JOIN US ON FACEBOOK
About 160 people already follow our posts on Facebook, which include information about our latest training courses, painted furniture and other developments. If you have a Facebook account, go to our page and click "Like".
JOB VACANCIES FOR 16-18s
We have more L-earn job vacancies for 16-18s who would like paid work and training with an East Sussex social enterprise.
The part-time jobs include reception, customer service, warehousing and deliveries, and furniture restoration. Employers include HFS, Furniture Now and Hastings Trust, with the training provided by Finding Futures and Baldwin Training. There are opportunities in Hastings, Bexhill, Eastbourne and Lewes.
L-earn's aim is to help young people who aren't currently in work or training get real work experience in a supportive workplace, alongside training to achieve the entry requirements for a full apprenticeship or College course at the end of the six months with us. Apply now to start July/August.
L-earn has been a great success for the young people who have taken part so far - read more on our L-earn page.
Cllr Kim Forward met some of the current employees at HFS on Friday; Lucy and Paris are on L-earn placements and Matt progressed from L-earn to a full-time Apprenticeship at HFS.
Photo L-R Cllr Kim Forward, Lucy, Matt and Paris
For jobs in Hastings & Rother contact Sam at Hastings Trust 01424 446 373
For Eastbourne & Lewes contact John at Furniture Now 01273 479 528
HFS VOLUNTEERS ARE THE BEST!
The first week of June is Volunteers Week - a good time to remember the people who choose to help collect, deliver, repair, paint, store, answer phones and make HFS stores nice friendly places to be. It's hard work, particularly when the weather heats up, so we reckon our volunteers are the best.
Would you like to join the team? Find out more about volunteering here.
HFS learners celebrated achieving qualifications in Furniture Restoration and Creative Crafts at Bexhill town hall this month. Mayor of Bexhill Stuart Wood awarded NCFE certificates to the learners who had studied in the workshop at our Bexhill store.
The course is run in partnership with Sussex Coast College Hastings. More information about our training services and upcoming dates is on our Training page here.
CHANGE YOUR NEIGHBOURHOOD!
The neighbourhood enablers initiative is now asking for volunteers with ideas for social action projects that will improve communities across Hastings and Rother.
Any ideas are welcome and training opportunities are available. The intention is to encourage grassroots volunteering and support those who would not usually volunteer to get involved.
Staff will work to identify and train volunteer 'neighbourhood enablers' to deliver locally identified solutions to local needs and issues. The neighbourhood enablers will then 'recruit' further volunteers to take action on the local issues.
Neighbourhood Enablers is being run by Hastings Trust in partnership with Hastings Furniture Service, Rye Partnership and Rother Voluntary Action.
Contact Barry Cooper (Hastings area) on 07534 509568 or firstname.lastname@example.org;
Flora Williams (Rye and surrounding area) on 07534 509687, Flora@hastingstrust.co.uk
Pete Relf (Bexhill and surrounding area) on 07534 509692, email@example.com.
CREATIVE SPRINGTIME FUN at HFS
Our new training dates for March, April and May are on our Training Calendar now. New stuff includes papier mache, furniture distressing and marbling so get stuck in and sign up now for your free place.
In May we will have our first ever "Dealing with Difficult People" course, being run by Martin of ReBal Leadership Development. This is an excellent opportunity to build your confidence dealing with the difficult people and situations in your life.
To apply for one of our free courses download, complete and return an application form.
NEW REVITALISED ITEMS IN STOCK
Our workshop team has been really busy restoring and revitalising some of the furniture that has been kindly donated for re-use, so we are starting February with some really gorgeous items in stock.
At HFS stock changes over fast so keep checking your local store for fantastic furniture!
Or learn how to revitalise your own furniture by applying for one of our free courses download, complete and return an application form.
FREE TASTER WEEK
Taster week is a chance to try out some of our training options, meet our tutors and see if you would like to take a longer course. It's free and there's no oblligation to sign up for lots of sessions - just give something different a go for the New Year! The courses include making your own wall art by painting on canvas, knob-painting, Fire Safety, First Aid and Repair Don't Despair.
To join a course, you can download, complete and return an application form.
PAINT NOW ON SALE
HFS has joined the Community Repaint Network so we can offer our customers low-cost paint as well as furniture and electrical goods, an affordable way to make a home feel fresh and comfy.
We will be reusing paint from manufacturers and retailers that has been mis-mixed, discontinued lines, or has minor faults such as damaged cans etc. The stock is available for customers who register with proof of benefits and community groups only, and is on sale at our Hastings store.
Volunteers are needed in both the Hastings and Bexhill stores. You could get involved with collections and deliveries on the van, preparing orders for delivery, arranging goods in the store or fixing and restoring furniture in the workshops.
Volunteering at HFS can help build skills, experience and confidence. We have a friendly, welcoming team, break rooms with refreshments and pool tables, and we pay towards your expenses. Find out more about volunteering and download an application form here or get in touch at your nearest store.
Look out for training dates!
Our new training programme is taking shape and dates will be arriving on our training calendar this month.
If you're looking for a job, check out the CV BOOSTER set of training sessions we have in December that cover lots of practical essentials for every workplace and will help you update that CV at the end.
Our CREATIVE courses are back too. You don't have to commit to a long course right away - try one of the taster sessions to see if you like playing with paint effects or restoring furniture before you sign up for more.
Click on Training to read more and book a place.
Coastal Currents Exhibition at HFS
Hastings Furniture Service is a charity well-known for providing free collections of furniture for reuse, but do you know how crafty HFS is? As well as offering affordable furniture, HFS helps people develop skills and confidence with furniture craft training. See how learners transform tired pieces ‘From Tat into Treasure.’
Come and see: 1st to 12th September at our Hastings store, usual opening times.
Fantastic exam success for L-earn participants
Congratulations to Tom H, Kirsty, Matt, Jay, Billy, Vikki and Tom P on passing their exams in Literacy and Numeracy at Finding Futures, and thanks to tutor Andree for enthusing and inspiring our group. These qualifications will really help our L-earners demonstrate their abilities when they apply for jobs or courses.
Bexhill MP pledges support for L-earn project
Bexhill MP Greg Barker met L-earn project employee Tom at our Bexhill branch. Tom is pictured with Greg, showing off the table he repaired and revitalised on our Furniture Restoration course. Tom explained that L-earn is giving him not only 6 months real work experience but also qualifications and certificates. He wants to move on to an Apprenticeship in Carpentry & Joinery.
Greg was very impressed with the project and will be helping HFS talk to Government departments about funding the continuation of the scheme.
Tom was also interviewed by Arrow FM - he's a natural star! You can download the interview here.
HFS team moves 59 elephants!
In the last year Hastings Furniture Service has reused over 275 tons of furniture and electrical equipment, the equivalent weight of 59 African elephants!
And we still want more.
It’s particularly important to support low income households, students and pensioners who are struggling at the moment, and with an independent local registered charity like HFS you know that your donation is making a real, practical difference to people's lives in our local community.
Naomi from HFS said:
“In the last few months we have seen a massive increase in the number of people who need affordable furniture and appliances for their homes. Our stores in Hastings and Bexhill have been really busy and our volunteers have been working hard to collect reusable furniture to meet the need, so please keep thinking of us whenever you need a reliable collection service.
We can collect 6 days a week. If you have something you’d like to donate please call us on 01424 44 11 12.”
First aid training for everyone!
This event has now passed. See our training calendar for more.
MP backs innovative L-earn project
Hastings MP Amber Rudd has written to government ministers this week to draw their attention to the work HFS is doing to help unemployed people. A visit to meet paid placements at HFS so impressed the MP that she felt that ministers tackling unemployment would want to hear about their work.
Amber met Matt, Tom, Luke and Jamie who have joined a scheme that provides them with six months of combined work with training opportunities. All of them were hard at work in the HFS workshop restoring some of the items that had been collected from Hastings and Rother households by our local furniture re-use charity.
HFS is leading a group of local social enterprises including Hastings Trust, Finding Futures, 1066 Enterprise and RVA to pilot the scheme for the County Council by offering 10 placements in a range of social enterprise jobs.
Amber said “What really impresses me is the success rate that HFS achieves with their paid placement schemes. Over 60% participants progress into paid work and others have gone on to College or University. That is much higher than average so I think government ministers will be interested in expanding the work that HFS is doing. It’s a worthwhile investment because it makes a major long-term difference to the life of the individual and to the public purse when they move into permanent work.”
Naomi Ridley from HFS says: “We hope that Amber’s support will influence the government to help social enterprises make more of these placements possible in future.”
Live Better, Spend Less
HFS will be one of the organisations giving out info at this event at the Magnet Centre, London Road St Leonards on Saturday 26th March. Pop in 10-3 for info. Or to save money and spend less on furniture, head straight to your local HFS store. We're open to everyone 6 days a week in Hastings and Bexhill.
16-18 and out of work? Apply now to earn while you learn!
Hastings & Rother residents aged 16-18, would you like to earn for 16 hours work per week in a local social enterprise work-place AND have a tailor-made training package that will run alongside your paid work for the next 6 months?
There are 10 jobs up for grabs including receptionist, warehouse and delivery assistant, furniture workshop assistant, soap maker, administration assistant. You can get real work experience, earn money and build your skills to help you progress.
HFS is working with Hastings Trust, Finding Futures, RVA and 1066 Enterprise on this pilot, funded by East Sussex County Council.
Apply to: Hastings Trust Community Enablers Team on 01424 446 373
College contract to provide training courses
The quality of HFS training has been recognised by Sussex Coast College Hastings. We will be providing more Creative Craft courses in 2011 thanks to a funding contract with the College. The courses are still free for anyone who is unemployed or on a low income. See our page for more information.
HFS break for Xmas and New Year
Our stores close from 12.30 Friday 24th December and re-open at 9.30 on Tuesday 4th January.
A great new way to reuse tellies!
When artist Danny Pockets asked us for 40 TVs for his latest art installation, we were delighted to help out.
While we receive loads of great donations of televisions in full working order, many don't make it through our rigourous run-testing process. They just don't work well enough to pass on to our customers. But Danny has a use for their flickering, shaky pictures, dead pixels and dodgy colour contrast and we're pleased to see these machines reused to create interesting artwork for people to enjoy, rather than going to the tip.
Danny won the Jerwood Art Prize and he is creating a piece of work influenced by local landmarks and local connections with famous people including the pier, Logie Baird, Robert Tressell. He is using locally-sourced recycled wood as well as reused TVs.
HFS Supports Afrikaba Festival
Afrikaba is a festical of African Caribbean and Mixed Heritage Arts and Culture, running throughout the month in a range of venues. There are many free or low-cost events including music, story-telling, games, art and drumming workshops - check out the Afrikaba website for information.
HFS is pleased to be able to support the festival by lending furniture to set up an Afrikaba office and make people comfy at the events at the House of Hastings, Queens Road.
Recruitment: 68 people applied for the job of Collection & Delivery Driver!
Thank you to everyone who applied.
Bexhill & Hastings Carnivals
HFS was happy to help Surviving Christmas create a float for the Bexhill and Hastings Carnivals this month. HFS loaned the group some furniture for the float, which raised awareness of the work they do to help people who are struggling get through the "festive" season due to poverty, distress, loneliness or homelessness. SC relies on volunteers and donations to provide help with food, shelter, heating and clothing.
Funky Furniture Exhibition
"Amazing, loved the vibrant colours"
"I loved seeing the before and after"
These are just some of the comments from visitors to our Funky Furniture Exhibition at the House of Hastings in Queens Road. It was great to put our students' work on show in the temporary exhibition, make good use of the empty shop and put smiles on the faces of people walking by.
Hastings MP Amber Rudd and Mayor Kim Forward launched our exhibition at the House of Hastings in Queens Road, awarding certificates to HFS students who have recently completed our Creative Craft course.