This is such a big question with so many possible answers depending on the exact change we are talking about. The change out of the depths of Winter towards Spring is just so wonderful. Seeing those daffodils change from green buds to beautiful sunny yellow flowers is a real soul lifter and is the promise of all the other flowers and blossom to come.

The change in temperature from those freezing frosts to something a little warmer, makes getting out in the garden, the beach, or the town less of a challenge or with less layers of clothing needed to wrap up in before we go!

What about self-imposed change, have you done a healthier eating plan, an exercise challenge, a ‘Dry January’ or given up something for Lent in the past? Was it any easier because it was your decision and something you wanted to do? Did your self-control stay in charge, or did you fall ‘off the wagon’? I have found it hard to do this in the past but have found it helpful and a little easier by getting rid of all the biscuits in the house when I am eating better or putting my trainers out ready when I am exercising more.

Changes to our routines have been imposed on us over the last couple of years, some of these have been positive or just a little inconvenient while others have been devastatingly difficult to live with. One change that is so encouraging is that people are starting to believe ’Its ok to not be ok’ and even better to start to talk about this and ask for help. The change, pain, loss we have all gone through has taken its toll but there are people who can help us if we are brave and ask.

Hope Trust is for anyone 50+ and you can come along to one of our regular events on a Tuesday, Wednesday, or Thursday, to connect and make friends. You will receive a very warm welcome. Why not be brave, make a positive change and come and see us, like lots of the people who come every week it might just become a new routine that brings connection, conversation, laughter and like the Spring flowers happiness and a smile.

You can find out more about Hope Trust on T: 01394 272592, M: 07845 202 112

E: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or visit our website however you choose to do it, we are here to help.

Tracy Haskins, Charity Manager

I had the privilege of being appointed to the new Charity Manager position for Hope Trust and started work in January. Taking over from Paul and Sheila, who had done such great work, over many years, will not be an easy thing to do. They have made a positive difference in so many people's lives and we wish them a very happy and healthy retirement.

One of my first challenges is getting to know everyone's name! I am not sure it ever came easy to me, even in my nursing days when patients would come and go on a daily basis. Thank goodness to our wonderful volunteers for helping me with this, they have been brilliant. I am not sure if face and name matching has become more difficult due to face masks or my glasses steaming up, but it is definitely a challenge!

So how important is your name to you? Do you like it, have you changed it or shortened it in some way? Do you prefer a nickname instead? Remembering and using someone's name, or chosen name, can make them feel ‘seen’ rather than invisible or just part of the crowd. Using our names can give us a feeling of dignity, respect, and value and that we matter to others. This is so important right now, where winter and Covid have pushed us away from each other, away from connection which has increased that feeling of being alone and ‘unseen’.

At Hope Trust we will continue to follow government guidelines and offer friendly, welcoming events for anyone aged 50+ who wants to come along. Somewhere to connect with people, who will want to know ‘your name’ and get to know you. If you have not come to any of our events in the past, why not come and meet us or if you have been away for a while, why not come back and see us.

You can find out more about Hope Trust on T: 01394 272592, M: 07845 202 112

E: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or visit our website however you choose to do it, we are here to help.

On behalf of the trustees I would like to wish you a very Happy Christmas and bring you some very exciting news.

Firstly although our recruitment process was a bit longer than expected it was very successful and I am delighted to tell you that we have appointed Tracy Haskins as our Charity Manager.  Tracy has worked for many years in senior roles for Sue Ryder Chantry and more recently as the administrator of The Fields Church in Kesgrave. We are very excited about Tracy’s appointment and are confident that she is the ideal person to continue to develop the work of Hope Trust.  She will be visiting us a couple of times in December and starting work in early January.  She hopes that you will drop in to say hello.

Secondly I want to share some astonishing financial news.  At Hope Trust we are very fortunate to have a regular grant from the Golden Sunset Trust which more or less covers our staff costs.  On top of this we greatly appreciate our regular donors and our church supporters whose contributions cover our events and our day to day running expenses.  We were surprised at the beginning of the first lock down to receive a letter informing us that we were beneficiaries of a legacy which would be dependent on a house sale.  About two weeks later the Golden Sunset Trust approached us and asked how long we could manage without their grant!  The GST needed to protect their investments which had been badly affected on the stock market.  The usual answer to the GST’s question would be just a few months but this amazing legacy enabled us to go for nearly a year without their input during which time their investments recovered well.  The legacy, shared between several charities came from the estate of Mrs Ellen Wood from Kent.  We have no idea how she heard of us and have been unable to trace any connection to Hope Trust although we are assured that we are the correct beneficiary.

I would like to take this opportunity to thank you for your role within the trust whether this is visiting our events, giving your time as a volunteer or supporting us financially we greatly appreciate the part you play.  Hope Trust couldn’t do all it does without you and as trustees we especially appreciate your commitment to us through the last two difficult years when we have all been so constrained by the Corona Virus.

I am so thankful for the ways God has blessed Hope Trust and especially through the people he has sent us.  I am sad that it is time to say goodbye to Paul and Sheila but so grateful for all that they have brought us over the years.  I am sure you will join me in wishing them well in their retirement.

And finally after 16 years it is time for me to stand down as Chair of Trustees.  Julia Hancock who has very ably led our recruitment process will take over the reins in January.

May God bless you all this Christmas