Category Archives: News

A Job, a Career…. simply a Better way of Life – thanks to the support of ReUsers – one of the Jericho Social Enterprises


Finding a job, a job that’s right for you and one that builds on your own skills, your own interests and aspirations is not always easy, especially when, for whatever reason, life has thrown you a few challenges along the way.

Chris Millard

I spent some time recently with Chris Millard, one of the permanent staff working at Jericho ReUsers – the “Re-use, Recycle and Restore” division of The Jericho Foundation, one of Birmingham’s leading Charities and Social Enterprises.

ReUsers is located conveniently just next door to Sutton Coldfield tip, giving householders the opportunity of choosing not to throw away stuff they no longer need, but to pass it on to the ReUsers, preventing their unwanted goods from just ending up in landfill, and helping others by supporting the fabulous Jericho charity in their work of supporting people to gain valuable work experience and lead better, more fulfilled lives.

Chris has always loved working with the public, his first job was in animal care, followed by a move into horticulture, with a spell at the Princes Trust after a couple of years signed up at the job centre.

Born and bred in Birmingham, Chris’s home life hasn’t always been plain sailing, following family break-up, he was faced with a few moves until he settled in with his grandad in Erdington where he now lives.

And his health hasn’t always been the best, with occasional bouts of epilepsy, often brought on by stress, sometimes limiting his ability to work and, in particular, operate machinery safely.

Chris first found out about Jericho from on online job advert and applied to work in the Jericho landscaping division, which was fine for a while, but then Chris’s epilepsy started to cause a problem with the tools necessary to do the job, so Jericho arranged for him to move to ReUsers in Sutton, where he has now been working happily for the past 4 years.

The job at Re-users has balance my life out” said Chris “Rich and Steve and the other staff go above and beyond to help me as well as any new apprentices – in ReUsers, everyone is like one big happy family – working here has given me new skills, and I’m especially grateful to Sandor who mentored me and helped me to identify different metals – so now I know about working with scrap”

So, what about the extra support that Jericho offer to the people they help, how has this affected the way Chris feels, his overall health, and his ability to cope with the work?

“I value the support of Matt and Don in client support massively, they are always there for me and literally anything I need, they can always help, it’s given me the confidence to help others too!”

“when I’m faced with a new job, Rich and Steve will always make time to break the job down for me so that taking on something new isn’t quite so daunting”

Its clear to see what a difference Jericho and the team at ReUsers have made to Chris’s life, his happiness and his wellbeing, he now feels he can mentor others, show them the ropes and help them to find and build on their own strengths and to make plans to combat their own weaknesses.

Chris knows that there is always someone to call on, should he, or any others at ReUsers have some challenge or difficulty that they need help with……


….. It’s not just a job at ReUsers, Not just a career, but a Way of Life.

A way forward to a better future.

Jericho ReUsers is one of Eight Social Enterprises run by The Jericho Foundation – their address and contact details are below

Address – The Old Depot, Norris Way, Sutton Coldfield, B75 7AU – Tel: 0121 329 2797

Opening hours: Monday-Saturday 8am-4pm Sunday 10am-4pm

Email :

Comments Off on A Job, a Career…. simply a Better way of Life – thanks to the support of ReUsers – one of the Jericho Social Enterprises

Collect, Recycle, Rebuild – A story of lives RESTORED at The Wood Shack

Fraser Lewis, Production Supervisor at the Wood Shack

Originally from Yorkshire, Fraser Lewis came to Birmingham in the late-80s. A music graduate, with 10 years or so experience of working in HR, it’s clear that there has always been a creative side to Fraser’s nature. So, back in 2006, he moved on from his corporate background to set up his own carpentry business, designing, creating and building all sorts of different types of wooden furniture, from TV cabinets and kitchens to tree houses and garden decking.

So, for Fraser, joining “The Wood Shack”, late last year was certainly in line with the work he had been doing for the past decade. And, it’s fair to say that the wood recycling division of The Jericho Foundation is definitely in line with Fraser’s passion for restoration.


“For me, my motivation in life is very much about “Restoration” – the process of helping someone to journey back to how things were, to build a better life for themselves after the difficulties and challenges they may have faced, to make their life better and more fulfilled”


At The Wood Shack the purpose is to seek out and collect discarded timber from building sites and the like.

The team then deconstruct it into its component parts, remove the nails and fixings, and give it a new life as serviceable, reclaimed timber for D.I.Y use, kindling for log burners and open fires and seasoned raw materials ready to be turned into inspiring creations that would be perfect for any industrial style café or restaurant and equally at home in any garden, living room or kitchen.

No longer does the timber once used for the building industry just end up in a landfill site. With help from Jericho Wood Recycling and The Wood Shack, this timber can be re-born in as many designs, styles and sizes as one could imagine – restoration indeed!

The restoration theme also fits well with the overall mission of The Jericho Foundation charity – to support those who had more than their fair share of life’s challenges, to rebuild their lives through a combination of work in a Social Enterprise and personal nurturing and support from people who care about others and know how important the development of skills is to the restoration of a fulfilling life.

So next time, you are thinking of starting a project at home, or need a rustic table, planter, or picture frame, pay a visit to The Wood Shack and have a chat with Fraser, Kirsty and the rest of the friendly team, then think about the difference YOU can make as a supporter of the wood recycling division of The Jericho Foundation, playing your part in helping to rebuild and restore lives.

As Fraser adds, “Now, working here at wood recycling and The Wood Shack, I can be part of that restoration – using the skills I have learnt, I can “give back” to help others……”


The Wood Shack and Wood Recycling is one of eight Social Enterprises run by Jericho and is open to the trade and public Monday to Friday 8:30 till 3:30. For more details visit

email or call 0121 327 6102

Comments Off on Collect, Recycle, Rebuild – A story of lives RESTORED at The Wood Shack

Quaker Housing Trust supports The Jericho Foundation’s innovative Live, Work and Heal Hub

For women who have experienced domestic violence and similar abuse, the road to recovery can be a long and difficult process with many challenges to be overcome. Simply finding a safe and secure place to live after leaving refuge accommodation, finding work and financial independence and building new friendship and support networks can be just some of the barriers that these women face. Helping people to overcome barriers and rebuild their lives is something that The Jericho Foundation is good at.

Image: Counsellor consoling a victim of Domestic Violence

The Foundation has been aware of this need in the community for some years. Now with generous support from Quaker Housing Trust (QHT), Jericho, together with partners Gilgal and the Bethel Health and Healing Network, has purchased a building in which it plans to create an innovative recovery and transition hub for women who have experienced domestic violence and similar abuse.

Link: Click here to visit Quaker Housing Trust (This link will open in a new tab or window)Welcoming the start of the Hub development, QHT Secretary Paula Harvey, said: “Quaker Housing Trust is pleased to have helped The Jericho Foundation realize this new project. Our Feasibility Study Grant enabled the foundation to test its plans at an early stage, and our subsequent funding towards the Hub is making the imitative a reality for the many local women who are in need of its services.”

The new Live, Work and Heal Hub (LWHH) will provide a completely new approach to enabling women to access the help and support they need to recover from and build a happy, prosperous life after abuse. The hub initiative was developed following consultation with women, relevant organisations and research. LWHH will focus on the three major barriers to recovery that all the women consulted identified and will address them under one roof.

1. LIVE:  A solution for women who have great difficulty in securing safe, secure, affordable settled accommodation once they have left a refuge or other temporary housing. A range of accommodation will be available for up to one year for women without children who cannot find suitable accommodation after crisis housing ends.
2. WORK:  Help and support for women to obtain the workplace skills and experience they need to achieve employment and gain financial independence. There will be a Social Enterprise providing supported /therapeutic work opportunities, volunteering opportunities and work experience as well as help with CV writing, interview skills, job search and confidence building.
3. HEAL:  The Hub will help women recover and build resilience by offering: a floating Support Service that will focus on practical issues; counselling and on-site therapeutic support; and social, recreational, learning and peer support opportunities for women to help them build friendships and support networks, develop hobbies and interests, learn new skills and help them move forwards with their lives.
Jericho is grateful for the generous support of QHT and anticipates completion of the Hub during 2019.

Richard Beard, Jericho CEO, said: “Without the support of generous donors, this exciting and much needed project would simply not exist, we are confident that this new initiative will have a very significant and lasting impact on the wellbeing of women who have suffered abuse.”

The Jericho Foundation can be contacted at
Quaker Housing Trust can be contacted at
Bethel Health and Healing Network can be contacted at
Gilgal can be contacted at

#housing #charity #accommodation

Comments Off on Quaker Housing Trust supports The Jericho Foundation’s innovative Live, Work and Heal Hub

So, what to do you? “I’m only a cleaner” – discuss

We’ve all had it, haven’t we? You meet some one for the first time, maybe on holiday or at a friend’s party or get-together, pass the usual pleasantries, and then the question comes about what you do for a living….

Now being British, I suppose there is a tendency for us to put ourselves down a little, be a little self-critical perhaps, which, I guess is where the word “only” comes from in this phrase.

But, HOLD ON A MINUTE, why is it that the job of Cleaner is given such low status in this society of ours? Is the work of “tidying up after others” considered as a necessary evil, a job no-one really wants to do, and, as far as a career is concerned – WELL, a career as a cleaner – whatever next?

But, let’s face it, we all like to be in a clean environment, one where someone has clearly spent lots of time and care making our world a more pleasant place to be…. a nice fresh smell, clean carpets and not a speck of dust in site.

At Jericho Cleaning – one of the Jericho Social Enterprises – we have quite a different attitude to work. We know that work is important for individual fulfilment, for boosting self-esteem, a way out of past difficulties to a brighter future, and, YES, a career to be proud of….

Furthermore, there are people in this world, who have, through no fault of their own, been tricked into doing work for someone for no pay, trapped in a land away from their home, and desperately in need of a change to their circumstances – Yes, I am talking about those people who have suffered the indignity and pain of Modern Slavery.
This is the world of Jericho – the amazing Charity who, for 25 years, have been providing jobs and helping people to overcome past difficulties.

…. a Charity who took the decision to set up a Cleaning Social Enterprise as part of its mission.
…. a Charity who employ and develop people into a trade which is not only essential, but delivers a clean, safe, and pleasant working environment for us all, whether at home, or at work.

So, I ask again, is cleaning a valuable service and job role for society? Does it offer a good career? YES definitely, in fact, to quote Nigel Lawrence, the senior manager in charge of the Jericho Cleaning Enterprise.

“before I felt called to help Jericho develop their cleaning enterprise, I was working in my own cleaning business, this was my career for many years – now, I have the opportunity to give back what I have learnt, to support, help and encourage others”

One of Jericho’s long term and loyal customers, the Socially Aware construction firm, Wates, employ Champ, a loyal member of Jericho’s cleaning team on a long-term contract to clean and make tidy their numerous portacabins at one of their building sites
Wates said, “Champ is like one of the family, he is so kind and thoughtful, and always makes sure our environment is clean and just as it should be – we even invited him to our last Christmas party!”

Wates are also delighted that, by employing Jericho for their cleaning contract, they are able to practically demonstrate their commitment to Social Value, to helping to support people, including Survivors of Modern Slavery.

All of the income from the Jericho Cleaning Enterprise goes straight back into the Charities’ mission – supporting people to become Skilled, Fulfilled and gainfully Employed.

Employment that IS valued and that CAN make a successful long-term career –
Employment provided to those most in need through the efforts of Jericho.
Does that sound like “only a job”? I don’t think so….

Jericho Cleaning is one of Eight Jericho Social Enterprises, offering contract cleaning services to businesses, churches and individuals. For more details, visit or call

Nigel Lawrence on 0121 674 1960

Comments Off on So, what to do you? “I’m only a cleaner” – discuss

Jericho team wins University “Bake-Off” for National Apprenticeship Week

Birmingham employers whipped themselves into shape to beat off the competition in a bake-off at University College Birmingham for National Apprenticeship Week. Teams of two from Jericho Foundation, Moseley Hall Hospital, The Salon, Midland Heart Housing Association and UCB itself went spatula to spatula in the Victoria sponge challenge, part of a week-long line-up of events to mark the UK awareness week.

Against stiff competition, it was Helen Worrall and Ann Jarvis from Jericho, who were delighted to take the trophy, the other teams getting in a bit of a jam with their masterpieces.

Jacob Walker, Employer Contracts Officer at UCB, said the event at one of UCB’s training kitchens was great fun – with a few of the cakes having more than a soggy bottom – and gave employers the chance to meet and talk about their apprenticeship experiences.
“Aside from my team coming second from last, the bake-off was a brilliant, less formal way to bring together some of the employers who provide the on-the-job training elements of our growing number of apprenticeship schemes,” he said.
“We have always had great links with industry, but with the current drive on apprenticeships and employers wanting more tailored programmes that are relevant and truly benefit their businesses, we are building even more engagement and developing exciting new opportunities.

The bake-off was judged by Rebecca Chitty, owner of Birmingham’s Chitty’s Cakes, Assistant Dean of UCB’s College of Food Samantha Dowle and UCB assessor Johnny Robson. Bakery apprentice Jessica Dalton, who now works at the University while studying for a degree after completing a Level 3 Bakery Apprenticeship, was also on judging panel.


Comments Off on Jericho team wins University “Bake-Off” for National Apprenticeship Week

Supporting Victims of Modern Slavery (….And celebrating being able to walk again!)

DR KARAMAT IQBAL, one of the trustees of the Jericho Foundation is raising money to help with the work of the charity and its support for Victims of Modern Slavery.

An education professional and consultant who has specialised in the field of providing second chances to disadvantaged individuals, Karamat knows first-hand what it feels like not to be able to walk and so, over Easter this year, accompanied by his son, he will be embarking on a proper long walk in Italy to raise money for Jericho.

Here’s Karamat’s Story : –

In 2014 I spent three or four, extremely long, days lying in my bed in the Critical Care Unit at the Birmingham QE Hospital, having spent the previous seven days under a general anaesthetic. They had operated on me, twice, during that period. Apparently, I nearly did not wake up.
I was completely immobile. I could not move about in the bed, without help. Thoughts such as ‘Is this it?’ Or ‘Will I ever be able to put on my walking boots again?’ were constantly going through my mind.

Then one day the physio man came; a supporter of Wolverhampton Wanderers (so I called him Wolf Man). He said, “when I come tomorrow, I want you to walk”. It took a while to register what he had said. What is this walking that he is talking about? Who walks? How do you do it? I could do it in my head, but nothing more. At that time, I even needed help to turn over in my bed.
Tomorrow came. True to his word he was there. It took a great deal of effort to get out of my bed. Then I managed to do it. I took two, maybe three, steps. What a mighty feat it was. I had climbed my K2. The rest was going to follow. “I will make sure it does”, I thought.

Over the next couple of weeks, I built on those first steps. I walked the ward, progressively going further, until one day managing to do the entire length. I then walked out of the ward, along the long corridor, all the way to the lifts.

The next, possibly the last, major challenge was to walk the stairs. The first time I did it, I nearly fell down. I discovered that walking the stairs was different from walking on the flat. Apparently, you have to remember to bend your legs as you climb up or down! I was just like those very young children whose parents worry when they have to navigate the stairs.

Once I had worked out how to do the stairs, I walked down to the next floor, holding very tightly to the railing. Then two floors, then three…..

After coming home I walked regularly; almost daily. Each time walking that much further. After a year I walked 12 miles, the distance between our house and the hospital. I was accompanied by some 25 friends and family.

And now over Easter, nearly four years on from waking up from my operation, I have decided to embark on a proper long walk, accompanied by my son with his younger legs. So, as a bit of a challenge. We are going to Italy where we shall walk everyday.
I am really looking forward to spending time with my son and using my legs for the purpose they were meant for. And, of course, raising money for Jericho Foundation in their work to support victims of Modern Slavery.

To support Karamat and to help raise money for Jericho, please visit the Jericho Just Giving page which can be accessed from the web site
Or click on this link to go straight to the page


#fundraising #charity #giving #volunteer #walking

Comments Off on Supporting Victims of Modern Slavery (….And celebrating being able to walk again!)

Sutton Coldfield Charitable Trust funds apprenticeships for Sutton young people through Jericho Social Enterprises

The Sutton Coldfield Charitable Trust (SCCT) has just awarded a substantial grant to the Jericho Foundation to help fund an apprenticeship programme for 10 Sutton Residents per year for the next three years, starting in January 2018.
Local Sutton Young People, up to age 29, who are not in Education, Employment or Training will be able to apply for the programme which will increase their employment opportunities, confidence and self-esteem as well as helping them to develop valuable new skills and competencies.
Opportunities for supported employment will be available across the wide range of Jericho Social Enterprises which include Catering, Construction, Landscaping, Cleaning, Print and Recycling as well as the well-known ReUsers charity shop located at the Old Depot, Norris Way close to Sutton town centre.
Richard Beard CEO of the Jericho Foundation, said “From the first point of contact with Jericho, we want these potential apprentices to feel valued, loved and respected – they are not facts and figures, but individuals with aspirations and potential”
The principal objectives of the Sutton Coldfield Charitable Trust are the provision of Almshouses, the distribution of funds and other measures for the alleviation of hardship and other needs for inhabitants and organisations within the boundaries of the former Borough of Sutton Coldfield.
The Trust’s origins can be traced back to Tudor times. Throughout a long history it has improved the lives of generations of people in Sutton Coldfield, particularly those in the greatest need. It has sustained its core priority to alleviate suffering, while redefining and extending its benefits to reflect changing times and needs.
You can find out more about the Sutton Coldfield Charitable Trust on their web site at

Comments Off on Sutton Coldfield Charitable Trust funds apprenticeships for Sutton young people through Jericho Social Enterprises

Jericho and “The Bridge” Partnership Supports Women to Escape from Addictions

Since 2011, Jericho have been working in partnership with The Bridge, a non-profit organisation bringing hope to men and women recovering from drug and alcohol addictions while also serving the needs of those exiting prostitution.

An outreach from Oasis Church, Birmingham, The Bridge run three supported accommodation houses in the city, providing support in recovery, right through to re-engaging with employment and establishing independent living.

One of these houses is “The Timbers” located in Moseley, close to the Jericho offices. A hostel specifically for women and girls, Jericho provides voluntary work placements for Timbers residents, in addition to other Bridge clients.

During the 6 ½ years that Timbers has been running, a total of 81 girls have come through the project, with the average stay for each resident of 10 months, the lowest time being a few days and the longest stay 18 months. All came with drug and/or alcohol addiction and were referred by prisons, community addiction teams, rehabs and other support agencies specifically for women.

As part of their recovery all clients are supported to engage in voluntary work and/or training, provided through local colleges, support agencies and local companies or charities including Jericho.

Another benefit of the service provided by The Bridge is increased contact with family including children and for those where it is safe for them to do so, this can be an important part of their ongoing development in building positive, healthy relationships.

Like many other charities in the City of Birmingham, The Bridge has faced challenges due to changes in statutory provision in the recovery world, however, as they have broadened their reach across the Midlands, referrals for the whole project have been on the increase.

You can find out more about the Bridge at
And the Oasis Church Birmingham at

#birmingham #charity #socialenterprise #news #volunteering #drugabuse #backingthebridge #TheBridge

Comments Off on Jericho and “The Bridge” Partnership Supports Women to Escape from Addictions

Jericho’s “Labour for Change” programme is renamed “Equiano”

In March this year, Jericho announced its Lottery funded “Labour for Change” Project, building on our pilot project and designed to dramatically improve the economic, social and personal outcomes of the survivors of modern slavery and those at risk of this kind of exploitation.

We have now adopted the name “Equiano” for all of our pioneering work with Survivors of Modern Slavery, honouring the journey and work of Olaudah Equiano. An African slave, seaman and merchant, Equiano went on to write an autobiography depicting the horrors of slavery and lobbied in parliament for its abolition.

Born in 1745, kidnapped and sold into slavery as a child, he worked in Barbados and then Virginia before being sold aged 12 to a naval captain who brought him to England. After being sold yet again, and after years in slavery Equiano was able to buy his freedom. He experienced further mistreatment and attempts to enslave him before finding employment with a resettlement project giving safety to freed slaves.

He went on to form “Sons of Africa”, a group campaigning for the abolition of slavery through public speaking, letter writing and lobbying parliament. He also used his own life story as a powerful argument against slavery. His autobiography was titled “The Interesting Narrative of the Life of Olaudah Equiano” and it depicted the horrors of slavery that many people faced. The publication was instrumental in the formation and passage of the British Slave Trade Act of 1807 which made African Slave Trade illegal, 10 years after Equiano’s death.

Even as a free man, Equiano often experienced dark times and also contemplated suicide before he turned to the Protestant religion and found peace in his faith, a fact that strikes a chord with us at Jericho as we know that, faced with the exploitation and hopelessness that modern slavery brings, many of the people we have helped have indeed struggled to cope with the personal effects of this terrible crime.

So, as we continue to build on our vision of transforming the lives of victims of modern slavery, we remember particularly Olaudah Equiano for his bravery and pioneering work in the fight against Slavery all those years ago.

Read more about Jericho and our support for the survivors of Modern Slavery here
#slavery #humantrafficking #modernslaveryact #africans

Comments Off on Jericho’s “Labour for Change” programme is renamed “Equiano”

HSBC Volunteers Brighten Up Our Landscape and Recycling Staff Areas

HSBC are keen to encourage their staff to participate in voluntary work, to support charities in the local area.

Recently, members of the Compliance Team spent a day painting the staff areas for our landscape and recycling teams.

They made a terrific job of it! Jericho would like to thank HSBC and the helpful members of their artistic Compliance Team.


Comments Off on HSBC Volunteers Brighten Up Our Landscape and Recycling Staff Areas
Subscribe to our newsletter
* indicates required