EnviroAbility Limited is a not-for-profit company limited by guarantee and is registered in England and Wales with registered number 3798789 and registered charity number 1076428.
EnviroAbility was established as a charity and not-for-profit company in 1999. Based in Ross-on-Wye, in Herefordshire, It’s been carrying out its work in various guises since 1993 when a local community recycling group was set up that provided employment for people with learning disabilities and associated that employment with a great cause – a powerful initiative to protect the environment. It was a great success. Our team of workers were given valued, productive roles in the community, we challenged negative perceptions, and so we began to positively change how a whole community feels about and interacts with disadvantaged groups and how these disadvantaged individuals feel about themselves.
This crucial work has continued and expanded. Our primary aims are to set up, develop, manage and promote projects that integrate people with learning disabilities and physical disabilities, the long term unemployed, and people with mental health or addiction issues, and that benefit the community and the environment. We provide people from these disadvantaged groups with real work opportunities and experiences that are both valuable and visible to the larger community, ensuring that we offer services that local people want and that otherwise would not be available. And so, individuals and groups often marginalised have become accepted and integrated with their skills and self-esteem transformed. Rather than simply focusing on ‘what’ we do, we put a great deal of energy into the ‘way’ or ‘how’ we do it. Developing projects for the community and environment, allowing abilities and ideas to grow – that’s what we do!
We’ve been heading down the road of enabling for a while now. What has been achieved is so simple, yet out of the ordinary, that we always encourage people to come and have a look for themselves to see how it has worked. We have established a structure that listens to and enables people that use the service to shape its growth and development, developing our own version of what nowadays is referred to as “Circles of Support”. We listen to our service users, facilitating them to understand their own abilities, find out what they do best and to identify and develop their project or role. We don’t follow a conventional project approach with time constrained activities fitting into existing social structures, but more as an ENABLER, working organically, grounded in what already exists, and then extending that capability outwards. We don’t come up with the projects and make people fit into them. We get the people on board, often with complex and varied needs, who may struggle to fit into roles with other charities, and make the projects work for them. All our supported projects must pass a filtering process. They must be good for the environment, they must be valued by and of value to the local community and the town, and they must provide opportunities to the disadvantaged.
We think ahead and draw onboard potential employers as part of the process of developing valued roles. Indeed they, and the general public, are behind the initiatives that have lead to opportunities for full employment. By favouring a “total buy-in” approach when assessing projects and their impact, we’ve made EnviroAbility a truly town-owned initiative, with the enthusiasm and energy of our service users and employees stimulating the involvement of local people and embedding us deep within the community. If as many sections of the population can be engaged in what we do, from the disadvantaged to local business leaders, this shared experience improves the quality of our activities and changes the culture from the ground level up.
EnviroAbility empowers and puts people in contact to make things happen. We link and enable people and groups, helping them to realise that most things are achievable, and trying to infect people with the enthusiasm to become involved. We see ourselves as a vibrant collection of individuals working together towards a more integrated cohesive community where all people are valued and anyone can get involved. There are always opportunities for people to give a little of their time and ability to contribute. We’re also open to discussing opportunities for developing partnership, strategic philanthropy and corporate social responsibility.
For us the next project is always the most exciting. With the chairman and the rest of the Board drawn from local industry, with the projects well connected and supported by local businesses and with our workers and volunteers contributing, making their mark and becoming ambassadors, we ensure that the service user ideas we put our energy into can succeed. Whilst we aim to do good things we also aim to do it by self-funding – charging for our services where we can, running our retail businesses and selling our recycled goods.
Are you interested? Just get in touch…
Phone: 01989 763388