Leaps project: Autism Wessex

In early March, Eloise Gullis volunteered for Autism Wessex, helping with activities for the children at their Portfield School site as part of our Leaps volunteering project. Eloise’s brother previously attended the school and she is always keen to help support the charity where possible.

“When I first arrived at Portfield School, I was able to join in with the morning classes assisting Forest School Leader, Robin Newbury. Both classes were different age groups and abilities, so I was able to gain a better understanding in the children’s varied needs and how the school adapt the class with each individual.” Eloise shared.

“Afterwards, I was given a full tour of the school, going into the sensory rooms and some classrooms, speaking with teachers and occasionally students. Their Community Fundraising Executive, Sara Armstrong explained how they plan to refurbish the School to benefit the students in the future and what they had already achieved with funding. It was very inspiring to hear and see for myself how the money raised can help. In the afternoon, I went back to the forest school at Portfield and painted their flower beds and planted some trees.”

Having an extra day’s leave allocated to support Autism Wessex allowed Eloise to help with the tidying of the forest school and complete extra jobs around the site, freeing up time for the staff team and allowing them to focus on the children’s experience.

Autism Wessex are always keen to welcome volunteers, whether that be at the school or with fundraising activities. All details can be found on their website at autismwessex.org.uk/pages/20-get-involved

Eloise is continuing to support Autism Wessex by taking part in the Great South Run this October on their behalf. At 10 miles in length, it will be the furthest Eloise has ever run. Her fundraising page for Autism Wessex can be found at justgiving.com/fundraising/eloisecgullis