SNP Support For Much Loved Glasgow Mental Health Charity

30 March 2009
SNP MEP Alyn Smith, Glasgow SNP MSP Sandra White and Councillor George Roberts teamed up on Friday to throw their weight behind a mental health charity based in Glasgow's West-End.

The Coach House Trust based at Belmont Lane, Kelvinbridge, aims to challenge the economic and social exclusion of adults who are recovering from problems associated with mental health, addiction and learning difficulties.

The Coach House gives these individuals focus and opportunities to gain skills, and be part of a warm community environment. Gardening and wood carving are just a few of the skills used to encourage individuals to discover their talents and train for a job suited to their capabilities and temperaments.

The Coach House Trust shop on Great Western Road showcases the work by volunteers in carving, polishing and in the restoration of furniture. At the same time, the project is a highly successful community recycling and local environment organisation.

The Coach House Trust is a non-profit organisation which is part-financed by The European Union, lottery funding, health boards and other bodies. Ms Sheila Richards, the Trust's founder provided a tour of the gardens and shop and was keen to talk to Mr Smith about additional European Social Funding (ESF) to ensure the successful running of the project.

Commenting on his visit, Mr Smith said:

"I am very glad George and Sandra brought me from Brussels to witness first hand the hard work undertaken by the Coach House Trust volunteers and the considerable contribution they make to the West-End Community and further a field.

"Tucked away in woodlands behind Great Western Road, I was unaware that this garden gem even existed. I am sure many locals are also oblivious to the fact that the Coach House Trust is an innovative organisation in the field of mental health which has been running for 13 years. It is no secret however that these volunteers are doing an incredible job in removing multiple barriers to help disadvantaged people reintegrate back into community life.

"I want to remove any funding obstacles and open the door with the Commission by making a firm print in the sand from the outset. The work of Sheila Richard and her colleagues at the Coach House Trust should be protected and promoted and I will make it my business to explore all funding avenues."

Sandra White MSP for Glasgow said:

"The work carried out by the Coach House Trust is fantastic. It not only benefits the many people who access the services they provide but also the local community who experience first hand the work carried out by the Trust.

"The approach the Trust takes in providing advice, help, training and employment is very much grassroots in design and it is clear when speaking to the people there that they really enjoy what they are doing.

"I congratulate the staff at the trust for all the work they do particularly the environmental and community aspects and wish them every success for the future."