Community centre named as 'Charity of the Year'

Fri 8th April 2022
Cherry Tree Centre 001

The Cherry Tree Community Centre has always been a popular base for Beverley’s residents, pensioners and those in need, and now it is set to benefit from a full year of support from a local building society. 

Beverley Building Society, which is based in the town’s Saturday Market, has named the Cherry Tree Centre as its ‘Charity of the Year’ for 2022. 

The Society’s Chief Executive Karl Elliott said: “After years of running our ‘Charity of the Month’ programme, we’ve selected a ‘Charity of the Year’ for 2022, the Beverley Cherry Tree Centre.  

“Our new Community Committee, made up of Society team members who are passionate about helping good causes, picked the Cherry Tree Centre from all charities that have previously been nominated for our monthly award of £250.  

“This means we’ll be supporting the charity’s hugely important work for a whole 12 months, in any way we can. To kick things off, we are donating a lump sum of £2,000, which will be used to purchase essential items for the young people who attend its popular Youth Club, fund outings for them, and contribute to activities the Centre is planning to celebrate the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee.  

“We’ll also be helping to run educational sessions about finance essentials with children and teenagers.” 

Centre Manager Jo Ramsay said: “It’s fabulous to have Beverley Building Society onboard. The funds and volunteering help the team are giving us will make a huge difference and we very much appreciate it.” 

The charity’s mission is to provide top quality legal advice and assistance in welfare benefits, debt advice, consumer advice, employment advice and advocacy in order to set the best outcome for clients. 

Beverley Building Society aims to play an active part in making local life that little bit better wherever it can. In 2021, it donated a monthly cash award to good causes across the region, nominated by its members and its staff, and supported a variety of charity appeals. Those benefiting included Cash for Kids, Mission Christmas appeal, Dove House Hospice Child Bereavement Group, Jacob’s Well Appeal, Beverley Riding for the Disabled, Special Olympics City of Hull Swimming Club, Leven CE Primary School, and the East Yorkshire Foodbank.  

The Cherry Tree Centre, which is based in Beverley’s Cherry Tree Lane, was one of the charities to receive a ‘Charity of the Month’ donation from the Society in 2021. Jo added: “The money went towards the community pantry we run. We have 150 people using the pantry, who pay £4 weekly to receive free fruit, vegetables and bread. We offer recipe bags, containing all the ingredients people need to make a meal for themselves and their families, and the money from the Society helped to fund those.”  

The Cherry Tree Centre history 

Launched initially by the local Children’s Society to provide services specifically for disadvantaged children in the area, the organisation has steadily evolved to become an integral part of the community. Established as a Community Centre in 1993, following the closure of a Family Centre run jointly by the Children’s’ Society and Humberside County Council, the Humberside County Council gave the building to the new Association in 1996.  

A lottery grant in 2000 paid for the setting up of the Advice Service including a first floor extension to the main building and the re-building of the Tree-Tops Pre-School, now known as Little Gruffalos.  The Advice Service and Pre-School are now very much established, particularly serving the local council estate. In 2016 the organisation changed its governing structure to become a Charitable Incorporated Organisation and changed its name to the Beverley Cherry Tree Community Centre. The Beverley Cherry Tree Community Centre has always been a base for local residents and pensioners, and has a Women’s Group and a Credit Union. The rooms are let to various organisations including Beverley Baptist Church, the Probation Service, and the Centre is also closely linked to the East Yorkshire Foodbank and distributes food vouchers weekly. The Centre has overseen many other community projects over the years, including a youth club and projects for disabled people. 

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