Box for Living

Chepstow and Caldicot Lions support the plight of local young people leaving care institutions. These young people have lived within a care institution for the majority of their lives. When they reach 18 they must leave the care home and start to live independently.

This is a terrifying experience for many youngsters who have no experience of living in the wider world. They have no family to support them and no frame of reference for how to embark on setting up and running their own home. It can be a desperately lonely and scary experience.

They are provided with accommodation and basic furnishings but must, for the first time, contemplate paying bills, cooking, cleaning and doing their own laundry. They often do not know the basics of cooking, making gravy, pastry or preparing vegetables. Chepstow and Caldicot Lions have liaised with Monmouthshire County Council Social Services and sought advice on what we can do to help these young people transition into independent living in our communities.

Lions 'Box for Living' is an initiative to provide each young person leaving care with a box of essential items to assist them in running their home. We hope to provide items such as, a screw driver, a vegetable peeler, a basic cookery book and some cleaning materials. Each box costs approximately £100.

Catherine is a care leaver who was able to secure a place at Cardiff University to undergo Teacher Training. She was able to take this important step thanks to financial support from Chepstow and Caldicot Lions.

When Catherine dropped in on our recent meeting to pass on her thanks and meet the team, she was also presented with a Box for Living and was delighted with the support it offers as she moves into a new home.

Lions continue to liaise with Social Services to identify additional care leavers who would benefit from one of these great boxes.


Care leaver Catherine receives her Box for Living, reproduced with kind permission.

*Catherine was over the moon with the support from The Lions, and wanted us to publish this story (and photo), to raise awareness of the support she has received as a care leaver.