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Band of Builders targets a record number of life-changing projects in 2022

by Jennie Ward

It’s going to be a busy year for the Band of Builders community as the builders’ charity is targeting one project a month to help fellow tradespeople and their families facing hardship, and will also continue with other important initiatives such as the Big Brew in October 2022.

Band of Builders (BoB) has unveiled ambitious plans to complete a record-breaking 12 projects in 2022 for fellow tradespeople and their families facing hardship.

The registered charity – which completes practical projects to help members of the UK construction industry who are battling illness or injury – is set to double the amount of projects it completed last year and is busy mobilising its members ready for projects as far afield as Plymouth, South Shields and its first one in Northern Ireland.

BoB has also been working closely with its partners and supporters – which include some major names within the construction industry, such as DEWALTJewsonTarmac, Gibbs & DandyV12 Footwear, TalaseyResideo and Haemmerlin – to start to arrange the ring-fencing of materials for each project.

Gavin Crane, the Chair of the Board of Trustees of the fast-growing charity, which was formed in 2016 and has already completed more than 20 projects, said that BoB is gearing up to meet the challenge of completing a project per month.

“Requests for support have hit an all-time high from tradespeople right across the spectrum of the UK construction industry, and we are taking BoB to the next level to help as many people as we can this year,” said Gavin.

“None of this would be possible without the generosity and commitment of our members and other tradespeople who volunteer their skills and time for free to be part of the BoB community, delivering projects that are life-changers for the recipients.

“Projects this year range from complete home renovations – like the one we completed at the end of last year for Cher Little, a mum of two and partner of plasterer Mark; she was left relying on a wheelchair after having her legs amputated due to contracting meningococcal septicaemia, a rare and often fatal bloodstream infection – through to landscaping projects for housebound former tradespeople so they can enjoy their gardens.”

Projects in the pipeline for this year include:

  • A 51-year-old father of four in Hertfordshire who fell 20 ft from scaffolding after having a seizure and has since been diagnosed with a brain tumour
  • A 40-year-old man from Walsall who suffered spinal cord damage after a heart operation went wrong and left him permanently disabled
  • A 63-year-old former brickie from Northern Ireland who suffers from progressive multifocal leukoencephalopathy (PML) – a breakdown of his immune system
  • An electrician from Loughborough whose 5-year-old son has cerebral palsy and cannot sit up unaided
  • The wife of a plasterer from South Shields who has ovarian cancer, which is spreading
  • A 55-year-old father of two who was a building surveyor before he suffered a hypoxic brain injury caused by lack of oxygen due to a heart attack, currently in neuro rehab

Ahead of each project, the BoB team assesses the requirements of the project – such as the trade materials required – and then engages with merchants and its membership base for support. 

Gavin added: “We have amazing backing from the industry, but every little bit helps, so if anyone wants to help in any way, we always welcome support – whether it’s financial, materials or anything else. Anyone who wants to get involved can email info@bandofbuilders.org for more information.”

The projects won’t be the sole focus of BoB’s activities in 2022, as the charity says it will also continue with vital initiatives such as the Big Brew. This will take place again this October and encourage tradespeople to come together and talk over a cuppa in a bid to remove the taboo around mental health in the sector – at a time when the suicide rate of UK construction workers is estimated to be as high as two people every day.

Band of Builders’ Big Brew initiative encourages tradespeople to come together and talk over a cuppa in a bid to remove the taboo around mental health in the sector. This year’s Big Brew will take place in October.

Peter Cape, Big Brew lead at BoB, said: “Our first Big Brew – which was sponsored by Resideo – proved to be a real lifeline for people right across the construction industry and showed us that there is so much more to do on this. We see the struggles of our colleagues within our community on a regular basis and see peer-to-peer support as vital to addressing this crisis.”

You can register for the next Big Brew here.

www.bandofbuilders.org

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