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I will be coming up to my 3rd year attending “ The Centre” this summer, I am hoping for this to be one of many more years to come. I love working at The Centre. For me it is a quiet, calm, informal environment where I can be myself. I enjoy helping others who may not be as capable as me and I also receive help from others, we all work together and help each other. I didn’t know anything about woodwork when I joined The Centre. I was looking with my family for a day placement a few days a week. Although I have severe learning difficulties, I am aware of my disability and do not like to feel “disabled”, so finding a day service in Suffolk where I felt comfortable, safe and confident and not feel like I had been placed in a disability day Centre was hard. When we heard about the Centre from another user I was excited. They talked about it with so much passion and enthusiasm; this particular person had been attending for at least 10 years and still loved it! We got a warm and friendly welcome; the staff are experienced, considerate, knowledgeable and helpful. When I had a look round and saw what people were making and the atmosphere, I immediately relaxed. In my first taster day I started making a decorative wheelbarrow, having never done woodwork before, with the help and assistance I needed I was able to create something I would never have imagined doing (I have now made over 20 wheelbarrows for friends and family!). I couldn’t wait to come back and carry on with my wheelbarrow. My family couldn’t believe what I had been able to achieve in that first day. Since then I have had lots of different projects and not only developed my woodworking skills but also my social skills. I now have many friends who attend The Centre with me and I look forward to seeing them week in week out. My confidence and self-esteem has grown immensely, I am selective mute and can be very shy, and I now feel confident and comfortable in The Centre. For me I feel like I am going to work 3 days a week to a job I enjoy with great work colleagues. It’s the independence I want and need at the age of 21. I can’t thank Simon and the staff at The Centre enough for helping me develop not only my skills but develop as a person and individual.
Hi my name's Russ and I've been at the centre for a long time. I like the centre cause I can meet people and help out when needed. I also do wood stack, that means when Simon orders the wood and the wood comes in, I sort the wood out and I stack the wood in the right place. I've picked up a skill at the centre that I didn't have before, and that's the skill of cutting in, and I have two people to thank for that, and they are Simon and Michaela.