Hardship Grants Programme – Charlie’s story

As an 11 year-old gymnast, Charlie loves nothing more than being on a trampoline, whether at his club or in his garden. Beginning with artistic and tumbling, a couple of years ago Charlie’s mum enrolled him on to a programme to try trampoline. Charlie fell in love and made the switch to trampoline and DMT.

When lockdown began in March, Charlie’s mum, Jo, was unable to carry on working. A self-employed baker and children’s cookery teacher, the new government restrictions meant Jo stopped receiving an income for several months.

As a very sociable child who trains around five to six hours per week, it would have been difficult for Charlie to stop bouncing with his friends.

Despite this, during lockdown Charlie’s club managed to keep everyone connected by setting up virtual sessions.

“Charlie’s club were absolutely amazing. Within two or three weeks they set up exercises for them and strength and conditioning. This was amazing as it was all for free, keeping the kids really involved. Although they were not on the trampolines, they were still able to see their friends on the screen.”

With the free sessions continuing throughout the summer, it really helped Charlie to be able to continue training with his club on some level. However, returning to the club would still be difficult with no income for the summer. Jo worried that Charlie would have to stop attending.

“He is so happy when he is doing trampolining, and to take that away from a child would not be very nice.”

After the Head Coach at Charlie’s club became aware of her difficult financial situation, they encouraged Jo to apply for the Hardship Grant Programme. Within a couple of weeks, Jo had been told that she had been chosen to receive a Grant.

“It has been fantastic; it has allowed Charlie to train for the next few months without us having to worry about where we are going to find the money.”

“I felt very relieved that Charlie could continue to bounce – that is what he really wants to do.

“So many things have gone wrong in the last six months. It was such a positive thing to happen and we are very grateful for the Hardship Grant.”

With support from the Hardship Grant, Jo can cover the fees for Charlie to continue training and she can buy the specialist equipment he needs, such as trampoline and DMT shoes.

Over the last few months, we have had a lot of applications for our special Covid-19 Hardship Grants. We are determined to make sure that we can help as many people as we can that need our support. To do this, we need your help to continue to provide to those in times of hardship, and to leave no one behind.

To donate £10 please text FUND10 to 70191. To donate £20 text FUND20 to 70191.  

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