A young girl is on a climbing wall while smiling

And the winners are...

Updated: 17 May 2021 at 17:02pm

Phoenix tenants have voted to award £100,000 of Community Chest funding to projects that will benefit residents in Bellingham and Downham including young carers, therapies for over 55s, free football for young people, weekly dance sessions and more.

Ten projects were shortlisted by our resident-led panel for a large grant of up to £20,000 from our Phoenix Community Chest. Residents had the opportunity to watch short videos about each project to help them decide who to vote for. Voting took place online, by post, and by telephone – 320 Phoenix tenants got involved to have their say.

Our award-winning Community Chest is an annual fund of £100,00, voted for by residents and awarded to projects and initiatives that will benefit Phoenix residents and the broader community. Since being set up in 2013, the Community Chest has given out £800,000 to over 81 projects, benefitting over 21,000 people.

This year’s winners are…


Covid Recovery & Health Therapies for over 55s - £19,990

The project will provide group therapy sessions for residents aged 55 and over in Phoenix Community Centres, including laughter therapy, gentle exercise, group visualisation, group relaxation, breathing techniques, pain management and, fun with opportunities to socialise and reconnect. They will also offer therapy sessions for residents aged 55 and over who are living with a disability or long-term condition and their carers. Their trained therapists also work with residents living with dementia.

Visit their website. Follow them on Instagram: @therapy4healing


Green Shoots - £20,000

The project will improve Forster Memorial Park by adding in new facilities, benefitting residents’ young and old. They will install adult exercise equipment, develop existing play areas by installing equipment and creating new spaces for children to explore nature in the park and run free nature-themed events and holiday clubs for children and young people.

Visit their website.


Sports Fun 4 All - £19,777

The project will provide free football coaching for 13 – 19-year-olds every Wednesday at Bellingham Leisure Centre delivered by FA qualified and DBS checked coaches.

The project will create a positive learning environment for young people in a safe space that will help residents to live healthier lives, improve their mental and physical wellbeing and reduce social isolation.

Visit their website. Follow them on Twitter: @Sports_Fun4All and on Instagram: @sportsfun4all


Young Carers - £20,000

The Young Carers Holiday Club will provide activities for those aged 5-16 who are providing care to a family member. With activities four days per week for nine weeks of half term our young carers can meet others in the same circumstances, receive respite from their home life and experience new things. Some activities on offer are ice skating, laser quasar, beach trips, bowling, day trips, arts & crafts and a huge end of summer party. We also will have two residentials to Macaroni Woods, in the Cotswolds, to spend time within nature for a break from their caring responsibilities.

Visit their website. Follow them on Instagram: @young_carers_lewisham


Youth First - £20,000

The project will provide fun physical activities and games for young people aged 8 - 19 years (up to 25 years for SEN) to restore young people's confidence, self-esteem and joy lost after months of lockdown and interrupted education. It will take place at the Bellingham Gateway Youth Club and in the Phoenix area, including at Dumps Adventure Playground. Activities include sports, games, arts and crafts, cooking, music-making and art therapy, led by youth workers and specialist coaches. This project encourages much-needed cohesion, socialisation and empathy through inclusive activities that celebrate teamwork and achievement.

Visit their website. Follow them on Twitter and Instagram: @youthfirstldn


In April, our resident-led panel awarded small grants, worth up to £2,500 to: Ambient Jam Sensory Library Experience, Bellingham Bats, Bellingham Dances, Block Business, Farmstead Road Community Garden, Kids Kitchen, Mary’s Creative Crochet, Parent Partnerships, Recover Rebuild Restart, SAFE Theatre and WellBEin 4 Girls. You can find out more about this year’s small grant projects here.

Jim Ripley, Phoenix Chief Executive, said: "I want to thank everyone involved in the Community Chest this year.

Voting in the Community Chest means residents get to have their say and decide what’s best for our community. It’s so important residents are heard, especially after everything our community has been through over the past year.

I can't wait to see our residents and community coming together when it’s safe to do so and benefiting from these wonderful projects."


Thank you to all our tenants who voted, to our resident-led panel and to all projects who put themselves forward. Congratulations to the winners!