26 Oct Essex-based “Grant a Smile” celebrates first birthday
An initiative, which provides practical support to families dealing with severe illnesses, has celebrated its first birthday this week.
Grant a Smile, the social enterprise founded by Loughton woman Joyce Obaseki, supports families with free home cleaning to help improve their quality of life. It also grants wishes to the children of families it supports.
Since it opened 12 months ago, it has helped a total of 54 families to clean and declutter their homes. It has also fulfilled the wishes of four children.
Wishes granted include helping 10-year-old Teddi and her terminally ill mother to meet Olly Murs whose music kept them going during difficult times. It also sent a family of five, who had never been on holiday, to Spain for a week of luxury sponsored by CLC World resorts.
The initiative, which started with just Joyce Obaseki and her husband, has now grown to include 34 volunteers across the country who give their time for free to help families.
In the last year, Grant a Smile has won and been shortlisted for numerous awards including the Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner’s Community Safety People’s Choice and Community Heroes awards.
Joyce was also one of 29 medalists who was honoured with a British Citizen Award in July this year.
Joyce Obaseki said, “We have had such a fantastic year. We could not have granted the smiles and offered the much needed help and support without our fantastic volunteers, sponsors and everyone who has donated.
“Our plans for 2019 include mindset and confidence coaching and active life workshops. We plan to run these events for the children and families we support to help them develop confidence and skills for life.”
If you’d like to support Grant a Smile as a volunteer or sponsor, you can find out more information at www.grantasmile.org.uk