Buzz of activity as care home residents turn children’s champions

Betty Hampton, left, a resident at Colten Care’s Woodpeckers home in Brockenhurst, New Forest, with items she knitted in aid of the Honeypot Children’s Charity. Joining her is Viv Carter, Regional Community Fundraising Officer, and the charity’s mascot Bumble.

A New Forest nursing home has experienced a buzz of activity as residents raised hundreds of pounds to help young carers.

The Honeypot Children’s Charity praised Colten Care’s Woodpeckers home in Brockenhurst for making and selling craft items to support its work.

Lymington woman Betty Hampton, who knitted a host of bee-inspired woollen gifts including glove and finger puppets, was among residents receiving a thank-you visit from Honeypot representatives including mascot Bumble.

“Helping children who are carers is such a good cause,” said Betty. “They often have very challenging circumstances and difficult lives. Anyone who cares for others needs some respite for themselves, especially children.”

Honeypot, based near Beaulieu in the New Forest, helps youngsters aged from five to 12 whose childhoods are impacted by having to take on care roles in their families.

Support includes respite stays at Honeypot House in Exbury and visits from a specially adapted mobile playbus.

The charity currently works with around 1,000 children across the south, including 80 in the New Forest and 57 in Lymington alone.

Viv Carter, Regional Community Fundraising Officer, who gave a talk at Woodpeckers about the charity’s work, said the £469 raised by the home would give one child access to a year’s support programme.

Viv said: “The young people we work with typically juggle school and growing up while acting as a family carer. They may be living with a chronically or terminally ill loved one or a parent with drug, alcohol or mental health issues. We offer long-term support so they have the time and space to be a child. It makes such a difference to know that Woodpeckers residents and their families are doing their best to help our children have their one chance of childhood.”

Woodpeckers Home Manager Katie Whiteside said: “It’s always up to our residents as to which charities we support. They chose Honeypot as they wanted to give vulnerable children the best chance in life. Betty and all the others always love their craft sessions and our team enable them to make and sell gifts and greeting cards at our fetes and other home events.”



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