The Laura Lindenfield FoundationAfter the death of her 19 year old daughter Laura, Gael and her family set up the Laura Lindenfield Foundation. The Foundation pioneered a project entitled “Enlightening Lunches”. The aim of this scheme is to motivate and widen the horizons of young people by bringing them into personal contact with inspiring adults from the world of work.
Over an informal one-to-one lunch, young people have the rare opportunity to meet with a successful adult and “pick their brains”. Quite unexpectedly, the Foundation has found that the volunteer hosts gain as much from this experience as the young people. For many it is a unique opportunity to meet and talk seriously with a young person. They frequently report that they value the chance to pass on the wisdom they often had to learn “the hard way” themselves.
“Enlightening Lunches” is currently being administered by The Discovery Project in Portsmouth. The latter is another pioneering project which Gael supports . It is designed to help young people develop emotional literacy skills. It is funded by Portsmouth City Council.
Details on this fast-developing and highly successful project and “Enlightening Lunches” can be obtained from: Cheryl Buggy at www.cherylbuggy.co.uk
The Who Cares? Trust
The Who Cares? Trust is a national charity working to improve public care for around 60,000 children and young people who are separated from their families and living in residential or foster care.
Having spent most of her childhood in childrens’ homes, Gael feels a strong affinity for the work of this charity. She has given talks to help raise funds including a Radio interview with the broadcaster Jon Snow about her own experiences in care. There are plans for her to become further involved by helping with some self-esteem building projects with young people emerging from care.
Gamian Europe is a federation of patient groups and 58 national organisations operating in the field of mental health. It provides information, help and advice to its network in 28 European countries.
Gael supports this charity by giving talks and leading workshops. Later in 2003 (dates to be confirmed), she will be leading training courses in Malta and Moscow.