23 November 2022

Give the gift of sacred space this Christmas

Over the last few years, 29-year-old Poppy has moved around shared and supported housing. Sometimes she had nowhere to stay and ended up sleeping in unsafe places. Chaotic and exhausting, Poppy struggled with deepening mental health issues.

But since September, Poppy has begun to thrive. She is one of the lucky ones. Moving into YMCA Exeter’s Stage 4 housing, Sidwell Studios – for the first time Poppy has her own studio flat.

“I have clarity like never before and somehow I seem to be organised and productive,” says Poppy. “My own sacred space is all I’ve ever needed!”

This Christmas, could you help YMCA Exeter bless even more young people, like Poppy, with their own sacred space?

Our vision is to no longer see young people living on the streets, in tents or sofa surfing. We long for all of our young people this Christmas to know the promise of God in Isaiah 32 v 18

“My people will live in peaceful dwelling places, in secure homes, in undisturbed places of rest.”

Every gift we receive is priceless, but to help you make a decision on how much you’d like to give, here is a breakdown of how much it costs for YMCA Exeter to help one young person when they move into our Stage 1 supported housing.

£50 gives one young person a brand-new, complete set of bedding and welcome gift pack when they move into YMCA Exeter housing for the first time

£250 a month gives one young person access to services of a support worker helping them to get back on their feet

£1,000 a month gives one young person a warm room of their own, with access to 24/7 support for a year in our Stage 1 hostel accommodation

Make it a December to remember!

Would you think of YMCA Exeter this Christmas as you host staff events and celebrations?  The past few years have been incredibly challenging, and, with rising inflation, this Christmas will be difficult for many people.  As we continue to strive to create safe and warm spaces for our residents and people accessing our Family and Youth Services, donations generated from your Christmas Jumper Day, Christmas Bake Sale, Carol Singing or Quiz Night will help us share some Christmas joy!  

  • £10 can buy a gift for a resident
  • £40 can buy a young person aged 5-18 a session of Cognitive Behavioural Therapy with a Wellbeing Practitioner
  • £100 would make a significant contribution to providing a Christmas Day roast for residents staying at the YMCA over the holidays.

Please email events@ymcaexeter.org.uk for a copy of our Fundraising pack.  We can supply posters, labels and information to help your event go with a sparkle!

YMCA Exeter Christmas Carol Service

We would love to invite you to the YMCA Exeter Christmas Service to be held at St David’s Church Exeter on Wednesday 14th December at 12.30pm

The service will be open to our friends, supporters, volunteers, staff and residents and our Lighthouse Café team will be serving festive refreshments in the Church once the service is over. Whilst you enjoy a hot drink and a mince pie, we will have displays showcasing all our projects and manned by staff and volunteers who will be delighted to chat to you about what they do. We will have stands for:

  • Therapeutic Horticulture & Green woodworking
  • Family Support Workers
  • Youth Clubs
  • Children’s Wellbeing Service
  • Positive Gaming
  • The Lighthouse Workplace Training Programme
  • Community Connectors
  • Volunteering

There will also be an opportunity to have a guided tour of our Stage 1 Supported housing across the road from St David’s Church! If you feel you can make it, we would love it if you could send us an RSVP to events@ymcaexeter.org.uk.

Visit our Christmas tree in Exeter’s Princesshay

We are so excited to be part of the 35 Christmas trees in Bedford Square, each decorated by a different local charity!

Our decorations have been made by residents, staff and volunteers using wood cut from our garden by our Green Woodworking group, and decorated with decoupage in our craft groups! Our tree is on the corner of Cafe Rouge, come and take a look!