Barca-Leeds Fundraiser

This year Barca-Leeds has 17 people running for the organisation in the Leeds Abbey Dash 10k on Sunday 6th November to raise awareness of our services and to try and raise some additional funds to support some of the most vulnerable people in the city.  The run starts and ends in Millennium Square, Leeds.  We welcome as many supporters as possible to come along and provide support on the day.

Barca-Leeds is a very resourceful charity and any money you could donate, no matter how small, would be truly appreciated and would make a difference to the lives of the clients that Barca-Leeds supports. If you wish to make a donation please visit our just giving page; .  Can I also ask that you share this e-mail with any of your contacts to ensure we have maximum exposure for our team of runners.

West Leeds CLLD (Community Led Local Development) Strategy


The attached document is the West Leeds CLLD (Community Led Local Development) Strategy Document which has now been submitted for formal consideration.

This European funding is designed to help local people who struggle most to get into the labour market.

Leeds City Council and Barca-Leeds will bid for 3 million Euros to support the CLLD strategy in West Leeds. It will focus upon employment and learning and skills projects targetting those who are furthest away from the jobs market.  Any organisation can apply to the CLLD board to deliver work within the scope of the strategy.  All projects will need to provide match funding.  If approved Barca-Leeds will lead or organise the work of the CLLD Board.  This programme is unlikely to be affected by BREXIT.

All Community Led Local Development activity under European Regional Development Fund and European Social Fund Operational Programmes must address specific locally identified needs in support of growth at community level. This will be required to focus on interventions that add value to local strategies which cannot adequately be met through mainstream European Structural and Investment Funds programme provision and are more tailored to local area characteristics and need, empowering people across the community and providing longer term sustainable outcomes.


Foot In The Door Training

Screen Shot 2017-01-23 at 4.35.00 pm
I want to work for a Not-For-Profit organisation.’

‘I want to work for an organisation which supports people who have had problems’ (Perhaps with drink or drugs, Mental Health, homelessness, Domestic Abuse, offending or such like).’

‘I know I’d be good at it, but I can’t get my foot in the door.’

If this is you…

Want to know more?

Please contact Natasha at Barca – or 0113 255 9582 for information.

Next course starting 6 March 2017


Aspirations (Foot in the Door) Training Partner Update

September 2016

The first session of the first ‘Aspirations’ course was delivered at Armley Park Court on 15th September. At the time of writing this update, we have delivered 5 sessions. We are delivering two courses simultaneously – one on a Monday afternoon and one on a Thursday evening – thus allowing a broader access to people with work or child-care commitments.

We had 9 delegates for the first evening session and 13 for the first afternoon session. We have ‘lost’ one delegate so far – due to their work commitments meaning they cannot attend either session.

Delegates are being asked to submit ‘assignments’ after each session to demonstrate their understanding of the content of the sessions. So far 13 assignments have been submitted.

We are absolutely delighted with the engagement of the delegates – without exception they seem to be prepared to join in, commit time and energy and, essentially, learn. They all appear hungry for information.

The mix of delegates is extremely diverse – with a good mix of gender and ethnicity and a wide range of academic and employment experience. We have two people who have previously been Support Workers but have been out of the sector for many years. We have three people who work in administrative roles in the ‘care’ sector and want to get into support work. We have three people with personal experience of services – either for themselves or their immediate family. The others are from a range of employment/unemployment backgrounds with a passion for people (eg one man who has been an electrician but really wants to become a Support Worker).

We have covered topics such as:

  • Qualities of a Support Worker
  • Safeguarding
  • Professional Boundaries
  • Lone Working
  • Equality, Diversity and Inclusion
  • Inter-Agency Working.

We still need partner support. We need referrals for the next course and we need partner agencies to talk to delegates about their services and explain opportunities which may be available to delegates in partner agencies. Please support ‘Aspirations Training’ if you can.

Mark Baker – September 2016.


BARCA Leeds Hosted Blurring the Edges

Barca-Leeds and Lankelly hosted a conference “Blurring the Edges” in December at The Rose Bowl in Leeds. Mark Law (CEO of Barca-Leeds) and Julian Corner (CEO of Lankelly) presented at the conference which was introduced by James Rogers (Assistant Chief Executive Leeds City Council).

The conference focussed on the shift in commissioning towards a more integrated, person centric approach looking particularly at the main developments in Leeds, working as a team in Leeds to move this to the next level and the main challenges that we face and opportunities.

The conference was very well attended by key stakeholders and commissioners across the city and excellent feedback has been received. A follow up conference will be arranged this year.

Blurring the Edges – Presentation Powerpoints

Counselling & Psychotherapy Service Update

After more than ten years’ service, Bev Gibbons is sadly moving on from Barca-Leeds to develop her private practice and complete a PHD. Bev will finish on the 25th June, but will still maintain some connections to the service in the future.

We are delighted to announce that we have recruited Jane Harris who will join Barca-Leeds from Oxford University where she gained her Masters in psychotherapeutic counselling, and has subsequently worked within the Student Counselling Service. Alongside her work as a psychodynamic therapist and Peer Support trainer and supervisor she has extensive experience in the voluntary sector, most recently as Head of Fundraising for Aspire Oxford, an employment charity and social enterprise. Jane now sits as a Trustee on Aspire’s board, is a mentor on the Worthwhile ethical internship programme and a member of the Oxford Funding Network selection committee. Jane’s professional experience spans the fields of sexual health education, homelessness support services, Rape Crisis and research, teaching and lecturing in Higher Education. She is passionate about the value and influence of individual, family and group counselling and psychotherapy and the potential they represent for individual and community wide empowerment and change. She is very much looking forward to joining Barca-Leeds in mid-August when she relocates to Leeds.

During July and early August we will have a short gap, but Bev has kindly offered to support some of the work in the interim and therefore we hope you will bear with us and welcome Jane when she arrives to start her new role.

Barca Leeds Host a 21st Anniversary Conference


Forward Leeds service launches 1st July

We are currently preparing for the launch of the new Adult and Young People’s Alcohol and Drug services in Leeds, in partnership with DISC, St Anne’s Community Services, St Martins Healthcare Services, and Leeds & York Partnership Foundation Trust. This service, Forward Leeds launches on 1st July commissioned by Leeds City Council.

For more information please see


Bramley fun day

Here are some pictures from the Bramley fun day which was a huge success –





A big Welcome…

Barca are pleased to welcome Eric Richardson as our new Operations Director.  Here is a short introduction by Eric…

I have been recruited as Barca-Leeds’ Operations Director and started work in this role on 17 June.

I have spent the last 11 years working for Foundation, a similar charity providing housing support for vulnerable people, whom I’m sure you all know.  For the last five years, my role has been Area Manager for the North East Region and Scarborough. My patch covered five different local authorities with offices in Scarborough, Whitby, Redcar, Darlington and Durham as well as Through the Gate Prison work covering prisons from Hull to Northumberland.  I line managed six Project Managers and my patch included 75 staff altogether.

I have worked with a diverse range of customers including offenders, young people and those who are homeless and I have developed and delivered services such as family mediation, child therapeutic work, domestic abuse outreach, refuge services and custody suite work. I pride myself on working with my teams to deliver quality services to those who are in greatest need. This is all part of what motivates me and as such I am looking
forward to joining you, as an organisation with a reputation for delivering excellent outcomes for our communities. I want to continue to work closely with my teams and local stakeholders, as I believe that staff and customer feedback is key to constantly improving and developing any service.

I am passionate about the work we do and how we can truly support our customers to take their lives forward in a positive way. Looking at Barca-Leeds’ fantastic and creative work, I really feel that I can learn a great deal, whilst at the same time bringing many of my own strengths to the post.

A big thank you…

Thanks to all the employees at Sulzer Pumps who helped raise over £20,000 for Barca by holding a charity dinner and charity walk in March & April this year.

The picture shows some of the walkers as they head off to walk along the Leeds Liverpool canal raising money for a new minibus – well done to all!

The Provincial Grand Master Fund award Barca £2000

Barca-Leeds are extremely grateful to The Provincial Grand Master at the Leeds Lodge fund for awarding Barca £2,000 towards our work with children and young people at the charity. Mr Keith Madeley MBE came into Barca to present the cheque to some of the young people from the Hyde Park group who came into the Broadleas Centre for summer holiday activities which included making healthy smoothies and playing football.

Barca would like to officially thank The Leeds Lodge and Mr Madeley MBE for his continued support towards the charity.

Letter from Nick Hurd MP recieved at BARCA.

We received a very nice letter from Nick Hurd MP Minister for Civil Society about BARCAs involvement with the Bramley Baths and supporting the Friends of Bramley Baths to apply to Leeds City Council to take over the baths in January 2013. To read the letter click on the link below:

Letter from Nick Hurd MP

BARCA Billboard Poster goes up and we take the market by storm.

BARCAs year long campaign to get us more noticed in Leeds and attracted more donations and gifting to our charity has shifted up a gear this weekend with the launch of our billboard poster. The poster is up for 2 weeks now and then two weeks before Christmas 2012 to attract more people into donating to the charity.

We also spent the day at Leeds market advertising the bike ride and will be more places across Leeds in the next few weeks giving out information and guidance on what we do and why we do it.

Watch this space for more BARCA advertising.

Leeds City Council say YES! to Bramley Baths takeover.

We are really happy that Leeds City Council have said yes to Friends of Bramley Baths taking over Bramley Baths from Leeds City Council. BARCA have been working with the group to draw up a sustainable business model to allow the community group to take over the baths and will continue to support the group for many years to come. For information on how we have helped the group please go to the community pages and Bramley Baths:

We need help!

BARCA needs a volunteer bus driver to cover driving our young people to events/ football practice.

Due to staff sickness BARCA are short of people able to drive our minibus and we are desperate for a good hearted volunteer to help us out and be on call if staff call in sick so that we don’t have to let our young people down.

If you are a retired bus driver or have a category C1 diving licence we need your help. If you are interested then please get in touch with Amanda Ogg – 01132559582 or

posted 17/04/2012

Phil Edwards from Platform – young peoples substance misuse service in the news again today.

Phil Edwards Manager of Platform the young peoples substance misuse service run in partnership with DISC has been in the news again today talking about legalising drugs. To read the full story click on the following link:

Platform is the first recognised by OFSTED as an example of good practice.

The Platform project supports young people in Leeds lives have been affected by substance misuse. it operates as a partnership between DISC and BARCA-Leeds and was founded on a mutual passion and drive to support people achieve their full potential. The service is commissioned by Leeds City Council, with monies pooled together from the National Treatment Agency, NHS, the Youth Justice Board and also smaller funding pots.

To read the full report please click on the below link:

BARCA-Leeds Platform Service and Community Drugs Treatment Service in the news.

Sometimes the  work that we do reaches the news. We have had two of our services in the Yorkshire Evening Post in the last couple of days highlighting the work that we do with children, young people and adults with substance misuse problems.

Platform is run in partnership with the charity DISC.

Girls Group win poster design competition to publicise Leeds Peace Poetry Competition 2012.

The girls group rum by Angela webb, Sophie Cherry and Angela Brady – in partnership with Bramley Library has proved to be extremely successful. the group were lucky enough to be asked to take part in a competition to design a poster to publicise Leeds Peace Poetry Competition 2012.

Two of our girls were chosen as the winner. the posters will be distributed and shown throughout all schools in Leeds as well as Leeds City Council Libraries and buildings. Four of the young people have compiled poems that will be entered into the competition and all the girls and staff members have been invited to attend a civic reception at Civic Hall on 20th June 2012 when the winner will be announced.

Whilst completing the programme we have also accredited six young people through Leeds Youth Achievements Awards. This is a hug achievement -well done everyone.

Download the winning poster by clicking on the below link.

Winning Poster TRUCE

Bramley Baths News!

Friends of Bramley Baths (which includes Cat and Mark from BARCA) carry on our plight to ensure that Bramley Baths doesn’t reduce hours further.

See the article in today’s Yorkshire Evening Post:

posted 05/12/2011

Friends of Bramley Baths including BARCA-Leeds plan to take over local swimming baths:

See the story in The Guardian newspaper:

posted 10/10/2011.

BARCA’s Bikes Get Stolen from Lock-Up

We are sorry to announce that 4 of our bikes have been stolen from the lock-up. Thieves broke in at some point over the night and took 4 bikes that Richard Hedges had been fixing in his own time ready for staff to borrow on the sponsored bike ride on Saturday.

If anyone in Bramley notices anything suspicious about anyone suddenly owning 4 bikes that all look identical – please call the police.

We have very kindly been lent 4 bikes from Get Cycling a charity based in York after furious twitter retweets about our bad luck and kind people offering suggestions and loans of bikes, so that the staff do not have to miss out on the bike ride and the sponsorship money. Thank you so much for coming to our rescue and thank you to everyone that helped us.

posted 28/09/2011

ESP awarded 2500 euros from the North Face Explore Fund for outdoor education equipment.

BARCA are happy to announce that we have received funding from the North Face Explore fund for money towards updating our outdoor education equipment and giving the young people enrolled on the ESP programme more access to outdoor education activities.

These activities are central to the ESP programme which works with young people who are temporarily excluded from school to re-engage them back into education with accredited courses and outdoor education activities to increase confidence and challenge their way of thinking as well as getting them to work as a group.

For information on North Face please see:

updated 27/09/2011

Aramark Sponsor Fairfield Community Centre Action Day

Thank you so much to Aramark for sponsoring Fairfield Community Centre Action Day.

By completely transforming a tired and old centre, we have created a real space for the good of the community which can be used and loved for many years to come.

Simply Health Donate £100 to BARCA-Leeds

Thank you so much to Simply Health and Richard Hayes for donating £100 through the Leeds Community Fund. All money donated to BARCA-Leeds goes towards ensuring that we continue our work in our communities for many years to come.

Torque sponsor New Wortley Fun Day.

Thank you so much for Torque for sponsoring New Wortley Fun Day, a great time was had by all and lots of local residents came out and joined in the fun.

See photograph of some of lovely food that was served at the centre.

Torque sponsor New Wortley Fun Day – for more information on Torque:

Youth Work provision at YIP respond creatively to riots:

One of the young people from our youth work provision has responded to the riots by making music not violence, and we think it is great.

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