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Myakka fills funding GAPS for local support group

Tuesday 25 June 2019, 18:36
By Andrea Cowan

Simon Whitehead from Myakka & Kirsty Campbell from SCF present the £2,500 cheque to Sammie Peckover, Angela England (just visible), Liz Morley & Sian Reddick from GAPS

Wincanton fair trade furniture company, Myakka, supports carefully selected community groups across the county through the Myakka Grassroots Fund, which is administered by Somerset Community Foundation (SCF).

The latest to benefit from the fund is Wincanton group, Guardian and Adoptive Parental Support (GAPS). Set up in September 2017 by Liz Morley and Sammie Peckover, this inspiring group offers support to families caring for children under special guardianship orders and adoptive parents.

Special guardianship is a legal order where parental responsibility for a child unable to live with its birth parents is given to a carer, most often a relative. Sadly this is usually the result of traumatic circumstances which can be anything from family breakdown to addiction issues.

“Funding is crucial as families or adoptive parents who find themselves in this situation are often completely on their own. It can mean moving to a new area and for grandparents it means a complete lifestyle change. The aim of GAPS is to provide ongoing emotional support and practical advice during what can be a truly harrowing time.”

 - Liz Morley, co-founder of GAPS

Simon Whitehead, director of Myakka, attended one of the monthly meetings at the Balsam Centre with Kirsty Campbell, SCF Programmes Manager, and presented a cheque for £2,500 to the group.

“It has been a real privilege to meet members and to be given an insight into some of the challenges they are facing. For carers and adoptive parents to know that there is a friendly group of people who understand what they are going through and who are there to help is invaluable.”

 - Simon Whitehead, Director of Myakka

“Somerset Community Foundation has been proud to work with Myakka over the years in order to support some great community groups in the Wincanton area. GAPS is a really good example of how this can work. They’re a grassroots group meeting the everyday needs of local families who have taken on special guardianship orders and adoptions.”

 - Kirsty Campbell, SCF Programmes Manager

The funding will go towards the room hire and refreshments for the next year, as well as holiday activities and days out which can help to strengthen family bonds.

“To ensure we are as effective as possible, we would also like to undertake safeguarding training. This is just the beginning. Ultimately we want every local authority in the country to have a GAPS group.”

 - Liz Morley, co-founder of GAPS

GAPS meets on the last Friday of every month, 12:30pm - 2:30pm at the Balsam Centre, Balsam Park, Wincanton, BA9 9HB.

For more information contact or visit their website:

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