Jo just completed a six month streak of doing missions. That’s so many bags of garden rubbish cleared and jobs done to help someone out and put a smile on their face. Give Jo a cheer to encourage them to keep up the good work.
It was a small and simple task, but one that could prove life changing for Ms A. Jo & I met up outside and were met by a little girl in the street asking us what we were up to... We either looked like approachable and engaging individuals or we looked a dodgy pair down the quiet cul-de-sac where Ms A lived!
We knocked on the door and Ms A told us to come in. Masked up and hands doubly sanitised (or quadruply, as there were two of us?), we were shown us the task at ask.
Ms A unfortunately had a neurological disorder which affects her mobility amongst other things, and most of the time she was confined to her wheelchair. Downstairs in the house she had an electric chair, which she would spend most of the day in, however at the end of the day when she took her stair lift up to bed. She often found she struggled to make the final bit of her journey from the stair lift to her room with her Zimmer frame. Her OT had suggested bringing her manual wheelchair up the stairs, and use that for the final leg.
It was an idea that Ms A had decided to trial, and where Jo and I stepped in. Jo and Ms A assessed the spiral staircase (and struggled with the joys of modern technology to get the stair lift seat out of the way), whereas I found the manual wheelchair and cleared it off and folded it up to get upstairs.
‘Little Lucy’ and Jo (alliteration being the only way to tell us apart) manoeuvred the chair upstairs, and to the left of her stair lift. Enough room for the stair lift to come up, but close enough to be able to get round to the wheelchair easily.
Job done, quickly and efficiently. In fact, too quickly and efficiently. Ms A seemed to be enjoying our company, and shared some photos from her youth, back when she used to ride motorbikes! ‘I love to share these pictures’ she told us, ‘show that there was more to me than being in this wheelchair’. They were great pictures. She also had a little lesson on the history of GoodGym, asking us about how we started out, before we were waved out with a classic lockdown elbow bump.
Another wheely good deed completed.
Ebury Estate Homeless project needs our help!!!
Setting up the food bank for a fundraiser which is running during the day. Some lifting and sorting needed to get the food bank all set up!
If you are able to help the project would love to see you there!
Jo, Sam and I met outside Ms I’s house to help remove her broken fridge-freezer to give her more space in her flat. Ms I’s friend asked why they didn’t send three large, strong men to do the job but we reassured her that this wouldn’t be necessary. We swiftly got to work moving items from the floor to allow us enough room to manoeuvre the fridge through the flat. Opting for a shuffle technique for the flat floor in the kitchen and a tilt and lift for the couple of steps up to the front door, all was done within about ten minutes and the fridge was left out the front of the house, ready to be picked up. We wished Ms I a lovely weekend as we left, not realising that she particularly disliked the phrase so instead we just said bye and headed off!
Please note that this community mission has been cancelled.
We are not sure what the jobs are just yet, but anything we can do to support them will be greatly appreciated.
All theatres and arts organisations are struggling, but this is also a charity, so it's a really hard time for them. If you could help that would be great!
There is also a RunThrough race on Clapham Common in the morning if anyone wants to join in - https://www.runthrough.co.uk/event/clapham-common-5k-10k-november-2020/
Hammersmith and Fulham
In this weeks episode of ‘GoodGym Clearing the Crabtree of Rubbish’ (okay it needs a better name... Crab-solute-tree Fabulous? The Litter-Pick Of It? Clearing The Riviera? Crabtree Valley?)...
Anyway, 11 of GoodGym’s finest came along to help out. Most of the group had been at Fulham Palace Moat earlier in the day, where we celebrated Sarah's 150th Good Deed, and Lucy's 149th. In true GoodGym style, there were iced fairy cakes, biscuits and a brilliant bunch of brownies courtesy of Amy (thank you!). We ran/walked/cycled along the Thames to the Crabtree, and Sarah handed over the metaphorical baton (or a couple of black bin bags) to Lucy, as she then celebrated her 150th.
Double the tasks, double the (unofficial) milestones, but hopefully not double the litter. We made our way over the wall to the inlet, armed with pickers and black sacks and got going for a ‘quick blitz’. What better way to celebrate the achievements of the day than with party poppers, balloons and candles. Unfortunately these ones were covered in river silt and mud, and had been washed ashore by the tide!
Other top finds of the day included:
a lone green welly
an empty wash bag
a plethora of balls in all colours and weights
a random evil goblin head
and a selection of nautical ropes and bouys.
Half an hour later, you could see the difference, and we had filled several bags with rubbish that would have otherwise caused problems for the wildlife of our river. Water bunch of litter-al legends. Well done team, and shout out to Frankie on going with the flow and coming along to not just her first, but second GoodGym mission.
Hammersmith and Fulham
On a Saturday morning that felt very autumnal, 13 GoodGymers arrived from all across London to help out with today’s task. We were back at Fulham Palace in the moat to continue the job we had started a couple of months ago - this was our third time tackling the moat and the transformation was really beginning to take shape!
We met with Fulham Palace Trust’s head gardener, Lucy on the moat bridge and she gave the team a brief history of the moat. The moat was restored a decade ago, to represent part of the Palace’s original medieval moat which was nearly 1.4km in length and the largest domestic moat in Medieval England! The moat is host to a really diverse and important wildflower area (one of the most diverse in north London!) and botanists recently discovered many rare insects and plant species, such as bascum nigrum and varieties of wild mint growing within it.
Lucy asked the team to remove EVERYTHING from the overgrown sides of the moat, this included the weeds, thorns, leaves and the never ending bindweed! She also asked for the the remaining grass to be trimmed right back in what Sarah brilliantly described as "a number 1 haircut" - an excellent description!
Speaking of Sarah, today’s task was her 150th good deed! 🥳🙌 150 times she has shown up to do good and get fit for her community, amazing work, Sarah!
So back to the task...Lucy had driven up the bright red tractor to the side of the moat and onboard had an abundance of tools to help us do the job. There were rakes, telescopic shears, and lots of industrial sized waste bags for all the moats weeds and trimmings. After scaling the fence with the help of the trusty collapsable stool we then used the step ladder to descende into the moat - all safety and risk assessed...we did it last month and all legs and limbs remained intact! 😬
In and on top of the moat, the GoodGym army set to work weeding, chopping, trimming and raking. Biscuits, Sarah, Andrew and Diane focused their efforts on ensuring the part of the moat we had cleared on our previous visits was passing the 'number 1 haircut' test. All that was needed now was a rake-up artist! With some strong raking and no-nonsense shear cutting, the grass and weeds began to look a lot thinner and tidier. Biscuits took across the step ladder to help them with their reach, or was it to secretly trap everyone inside until they provided biscuits and treats?! 🤔🍪.
Katie, Lucy and Frankie did a fantastic job on tackling on the weeds and overgrown weeds at the top of the moat...some chop notch work from them all in removing lots of dead weeds and spruces. They definitely won today's competition of 'find the longest bindweed' and they celebrated by holding their prized find aloft.
Back in the moat, Jo, Ben, Jess, Amy, Bethan and Beth were tackling the moat sides nearest to the moat bridge. Ben did his best mountain goat impression 🐐 as he scaled the sides and balanced superbly as he cut down the large weeds and thistles. Not to be outdone by Ben's impression, Bethan took it one step further as she managed a special run and rake action. Jess, Amy, Beth and Jo certainly weren't raking it up as they went along as they efficiently raked all the leaves and grass into big piles at the foot of the moat and quickly filled up the industrial sized bags.
After an hour and a half of hard work and with 9 industrial sized bags filled with weeds, leaves, thistles and grass we called it a day. The final couple of bags were dragged along and out of the moat by Sarah, Bethan and Beth, thank goodness they had bags of muscles! The moat looked amazing - check out the before and after photos!
We had a lovely team photo around the tractor that was now filled with the industrial bags full of weeds and leaves ready for the compost heap. Lucy and Katie couldn't resist getting in some calendar snaps as they posed on top of the tractor! Vogue watchout!
Before everyone either set-off home or on to the next of our Saturday Community Mission double-header we of course had to have some delicious baked goods to celebrate Sarah’s 150th good deed AND Lucy’s 150th good deed day (Lucy was technically on 149, but as today was a double-task day her 150th deed was imminent - big well done, Lucy!)
It was so lovely to see everyone and thanks again for all your hard work!