50 for Free 2020 feedback

Read how this year's intake of 50 for Free groups got on with their stays. We are grateful to have received this feedback before the government lockdown procedures were put into place.

Norwood

Old Parsonage, Oxford

Norwood is the UK's largest Jewish charity supporting children, families and people with learning disabilities and autism.


'My son is severely disabled and went to Norwood’s assisted living facility – I have looked after him for 19 years and felt like I needed a break. The trip helped me relax and breathe the lovely air.'

The River House Trust

Woodsford Castle, Dorset

The River House Trust is a community based centre for people who live with HIV. They provide a large and diverse range of services such as nursing advice, counselling, therapies and courses.

'Thank you so very much for accepting our group, we had an absolutely wonderful stay. The group wanted to stay longer. The castle was immaculately clean and very comfortable, and with all the wonderful shoreline of the English coast to explore, it really was a case of recharging ones soul. One of the highlights for me, on our last morning one of the sheep came by with a pair of lambs and also seeing Cloud Hill, Lawrence of Arabia’s humble home. What an amazing man. So thank you again Landmark, we love you and support you.

The River House'

The Lodge Trust

Alton Station, Staffordshire

The Lodge Trust exists to make a Christian provision for adults with learning disabilities and is registered with the Care Quality Commission to provide accommodation for persons who require nursing or personal care (but does not provide nursing care).

'Wow this is like stepping back in time! It's possible to have fun without a TV or the internet. We were really grateful for the gift of this holiday.

Thank you!'

Jump Space

Morpeth Castle, Northumberland

Jump Space is a specialist centre offering Rebound Therapy, Trampolining and Sensory play. Their primary client group is people with disability and their families.

'I am sole carer to my three children, two of whom has disabilities and I am also battling cancer at present. Just to say a massive THANK YOU for our stay at Morpeth Castle. You just don’t know how much I needed that break and how much good it has done me.
The break gave me the chance to totally chill, not worry about treatment and think of me.
I feel stronger mentally and am ready to fight my next step in my battle against cancer.'

Break

Cavendish Hall, Suffolk

Break support vulnerable young people. They believe every child and young person needs a home where they feel safe and loved.

'This experience allowed people to have a safe space to just experience living together, singing at the top of their voices, dance around the kitchen while cooking but also relax in the lounge doing embroidery. They all enjoyed a spacious and bright room, most of them with an amazing double bed and lots of bubbly bath! This was an opportunity for them to explore things that they never did before and they all got a lot out of it! and coffee drinking, legacy and evaluation of the project. The best outcome was to see how providing a safe space for this group of young people allowed them to have a great experience. At the end of the week, everyone felt safe enough to express what they get out of this experience as well as ways to improve the implement of such a project.'

 

 

Dochas Carers

Saddell House, Argyll and Bute

Dochas Carers centre offers hope not only to people living with GBS or MND but also to others who have sought our support and guidance living with other medical conditions. They offer emotional and practical support by providing information, guidance and training for unpaid carers through the maze of services.

'The carers told me they need the break because they were exhausted and needed a break from caring. Most of them said they were experiencing emotional and mental problems due to the pressures of caring. Some also stated that it was brilliant having someone to go on holiday with as their lives had got smaller and they had no one to go away for a break with.  Some said it was a chance to meet new friends – one quote was "I came away with a group of strangers but I’m going home with a whole bunch of new friends".

One carer who was accompanied by her husband who has Alzheimer’s (they are in their 50s) became so emotional and burst into tears when she was offered a place on the break.'

KeyRing

Langley Gatehouse, Shropshire

KeyRing helps people to build their independent living skills. Independence is about seeing beyond services.

'Our members suffer with mental health problems and learning disabilities; this trip has given them so much more than just a holiday. While staying at the Gatehouse we worked together making all of our meals. We laughed and joked as we played board games and cards. We sang along to the radio together and we built new lasting friendships. Our members feel more able after the trip and recognise better their own skills and abilities.'

Mummy's Star

Lengthsman's Cottage, Warwickshire

Mummy's Star is the only charity in the UK and Ireland dedicated to women and their families when the mother is diagnosed cancer during pregnancy shortly or after a birth. Our aim is to support pregnancy through cancer and beyond.

'I was diagnosed with Chondrosarcoma, a bone cancer during pregnancy, from that point my life changed. A break away meant I could forget and enjoy a nice time with my family.

“Thank you so much for giving us the chance to have a relaxing weekend. It isn’t something I would have been able to fund myself as I don’t have the finances available. You have allowed us to forget reality for a few days.'

Oasis

The Grange, Kent

Oasis supports people who have been affected by domestic abuse.

'We used the building to recharge our batteries and we felt very well rested after our stay. We’d just like to say "Thank you!" Being able to have a weekend out of the refuge environment meant a huge amount to us.'

 

 

The Ripple

Auchinleck House, Ayrshire

The Ripple delivers a wide range of projects designed to help local people in Restalrig, Lochend and Craigentinny to help themselves.

Its Healthy Hub Walking Groups provide two weekly 30 minute walks that are led by trained volunteers and follow pre-planned local routes. The earlier walk is aimed at people who like to walk briskly and the later walk offers beginners a more gentle pace.

'We stayed during very strange and uncertain times with regard to Covid19. This was undoubtedly an anxious time for everyone. However, despite being a group of people who often struggle to keep their anxieties under control, all guests reported feeling a great sense of calm whenever they were there, and due to the lovely lack of TV and Wifi, had to actively look for news. They chose not to for the most part, and clearly saw and remarked on the benefits of disconnection from our modern ways.  We used the building as a kind of retreat where we could comfortably and safely take part in simple activities that would support our wellbeing. E.g.,  plenty of fresh air and walking, creative writing, talking, eating together, disconnection from technology and  everyday lives.'

'I can honestly say, the only bad part was having to come home!'

North Argyll Carers

Saddell House, Argyll and Bute

North Argyll Carers aims to provide a person centred support service to all carers in Oban, Lorn & the Isles. Making a positive difference to the lives of carers.'

'We took a group of unpaid carers away on a well-earned break, the whole group literally gasped as we walked through the door! During our stay each carer worked on a piece for an anthology ‘Writing for Wellbeing’ which is due to be published this year.

You have made a group of people who have daily struggles very happy by providing this escape to a place of peace and tranquility, especially during these troubled times. Thank you!'

Oasis Waterloo

Wilmington Priory, Eastbourne, East Sussex

Oasis Hub Waterloo aims to help to create a local community where people of all ages and situations feel included, knowing that they can contribute and realise a deep sense of belonging.

'Being in London and in a small 1 bedroom flat with 6 of us means no chance for any member of the family to have his/her own space. We don't often have a chance to leave London. it felt like stepping into the past with everything, having the feel of legacy and smell of heritage. An amazing feeling that overwhelmed all of our senses.

The stay helped our family to re-connect and get closer.  Getting into the rural and countryside life allowed us to have that fun, quiet and peaceful time together. My family and I are really grateful for this amazing gift which has made a big difference to the way we see things and shed the light on the most important thing .. and that is our family connections and ties. So from the bottom of our heart THANK YOU.'

Chilli Bon Bon

Alton Station, Staffordshire

Chilli BON BON are a dance and drama group formed in response to requests by Brunswick workers. They use sound, music, movement, film, dance, silence, tears and laughter to develop their work.

'We felt really privileged and grateful to have had a holiday before these turbulent times.'

Age Concern, Bracknell Forest

Winsford Cottage Hospital, Devon

Age Concern Bracknell Forest is dedicated to supporting older people. They offer a supportive companion centre that is dementia-friendly and offers a safe and secure environment for older people.

'I care for my mum who is severely disabled as well as look after my family and it’s very stressful – this stay gave me a chance at last to fully relax. I feel much more positive now and have increased strength to get through these difficult times. We’d like to say ‘THANK YOU SO MUCH.’ To the donors and Landmark Trust - this meant so much to us. I hope their kindness comes back to them 100 fold.'

Headway Leicester

The White House, Shropshire

Headway is the UK-wide charity that works to improve life after brain injury by providing vital support and information services.

We would like to thank you from the bottom of our hearts for giving us the opportunity to spend quality family time together and create some beautiful memories on our family holiday in a beautiful farm house in the Shropshire countryside.

My dad was able to grow into the strong happy, confident dad & grandad that we know he can be. We have made some wonderful happy memories as a family together with lots of laughter, singing songs & playing music, card games & ping pong, sitting around the dinner table eating lovely home cooked food prepared together as a family, countryside dog walks & we even popped into the local village pub.

As happy tears roll down my cheeks, it has made us realise that what we thought was now impossible, is actually possible, & we look foward to sharing more adventures together in the future.

Louisa & the Di Gregorio family

Maggie's Cancer Care

Auchinleck House, Ayrshire

Maggie’s offers the best possible support free to anyone with cancer and their families who walk through their doors.

'The whole family benefited from this they had plans to do lots of things but just found staying rested in beautiful surroundings was the thing that benefited them most. I know it was of huge benefit and even the lady’s husband said he got such a benefit from the stay.

Thank you for this lovely gift.'

 

The Daisy Chain Club

Elton House, Somerset

The Daisy Chain Club is a social and leisure group for families who have a child with a disability or special needs, and their siblings.

'As carers you don’t take the time to look after yourself, and prior to the stay I was feeling very low and isolated. The idea was to find others feeling the same to build strength ready for future challenges ahead. We were able to support each other with shared stories/experience/knowledge. We ate, drank, played games, laughed and enjoyed the beautiful accommodation.'

 

Under the Sky

Llwyn Celyn, Monmouthshire

Under The Sky Events is a national organisation offering fully funded opportunities in ​the outdoors to care experienced adults to transform their lives.

'Under the Sky Events gives experiences in the outdoors to those who were brought up in care (children’s homes/foster homes etc.) to improve their lives. Two of our cohort are people who struggle with everyday life; their childhoods were so traumatic that they live very dysfunctional lives and our charity gives them a chance – this stay was wonderful therapy.'

 

Yeleni Therapy and Support

Llwyn Celyn, Monmouthshire

Yeleni Therapy and Support reaches out and supports as many cancer patients as possible.

'We felt our stay bonded us as a group, working with shared aims, individual skills and experience. It was a treat to socialize and share stories of our lives hitherto unknown. We’d like to say thank you – we all felt rested, restored, beguiled and charmed – it was a very special experience.'