FirstLight Trust, a charity helping former members of the Armed Forces and emergency services get back on their feet, has been awarded £350,000 by The National Lottery Community Fund which distributes money raised by National Lottery players for good causes and is the largest community funder in the UK…

Dorinda Wolfe Murray from FirstLight Trust said: “We’re over the moon to have been awarded this grant. Thanks to National Lottery players, we will be able to offer even more activities in Scarborough over the next three years. Healthy living and cooking demonstrations can take place in a new upstairs kitchen workshop in our hub. Plus our disused courtyard in Newborough can finally be transformed into a space for veterans and their families to learn more about gardening and food.”

Some of the new activities planned for Scarborough veterans will include walking groups, money management and computing courses plus crafting for all the family sessions. Additional activities will be delivered with the help of local organisations such as Stepney Hill Farm, Adult Learning and Skills Service, Everyone Active, Montessori School and Scarborough Council. A therapeutic service delivered through qualified clinicians will provide support and guidance.

The Sharpe’s café area is already popular with ex-service and emergency service personnel as well as the general public. It provides a quiet, Wifi-free place to chat and relax, with no distracting background music. By developing the courtyard, FirstLight Trust hopes to offer and outdoor space with tables and chairs to encourage more veterans and their children to visit.

Dorinda explains: “We hope the changes will allow at least 300 Scarborough veterans will feel less isolated and improve their physical and mental health. For some this will mean they may even gain enough confidence and marketable skills to volunteer or return to work. This money will change lives.”