Sad News of a Sorely Missed Colleague

Some of you may (or may not) have met Peter Cooper who had volunteered as a Therapist offering aromatherapy, reflexology, reiki and indian head massage since Aug 2003. Born on the 19th Dec 1930, Peter was 81 yrs and was a kind gentleman who was wholly reliable, trustworthy and generously came every week to offer treatments to our clients. He was well known to those of us who worked with him and knew him as a willing person who was always ready to go the extra mile to help others. Previous to coming to Freshwinds Peter was already volunteering for a number of years at St Mary’s Hospice.

In the last few years Peter battled with his own long term health problems, but continued to offer treatments to our clients despite this. On many occasions we offered him support for his own health, but as  a completely selfless man he always declined and felt he was able to cope. Eventually in February 2011 he was forced to stop volunteering as his health had further deteriorated. In the middle of December 2011 we were informed that Peter had been admitted to St Mary’s Hospice terminally ill with cancer. He died at Christmas time.

We are deeply saddened to hear about Peter’s passing and would ask all of you to kindly take a moment to remember him for all that he contributed to Freshwinds and the good that he has done for everyone, and if you feel  it is appropriate to offer a kind prayer or a thought in his name.

Thank you for your thoughts and prayers.

Freshwinds AGM Celebrates Another Successful Year

Yesterday Freshwinds held it’s Annual General Meeting to present the Annual Report and reflect on the successes and achievements of the past year. At the event the accounts were presented by Steve Moralee, approved by all people attending and were signed off by the Chair of Trustees, Linette Tatton-Brown.

If you wish you can download our 2011 Annual Report from our publications page.

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Freshwinds receives an early christmas present

Freshwinds were delighted to receive a £2,500 donation from Vector UK this week. Solihull based Vector, a leading company that provides tools, software components and engineering services for the automobile and related industries, made the donation as part of their commitment to support local organisations such as Freshwinds that make the communities in which they operate a better place and share their values. Freshwinds is delighted to be chosen as one of Vector’s supported charities and Director of Development, Steven Moralee said that it was a fantastic early Christmas present for the charity and will help us to help more people in the West Midlands.

Fresh in the City – Winter 2011

We recently celebrated the release of our Winter 2011 edition of Fresh in the City – Freshwinds’ magazine, which includes articles on our Be…Scene event in November, Salma Rashid’s video Walk a Mile in My Shoes (a documentary video telling the stories of three refugees to mark Refugee Week), and our recent Volunteer Mentoring successes.

Click on the picture below to download a copy

Freshwinds would like to thank all those who made this issue of the magazine possible.

World Aids Day Update

December the 1st is World AIDS Day, the international day of remembrance for people who been lost to the virus and celebration for the lives of those living with the virus. This year, as in every year, the Birmingham HIV and sexual health sector marked the day with a series of events aimed at raising awareness of HIV and remembering and celebrating the lives of those living with HIV. During the day, flash mobs took place at key areas of the city such as New Street Station and Brindleyplace and in the evening, an event was held at the Midlands Art Centre in Cannon Hill Park. The event was started by a candle light procession through the park to the band stand where words were spoken by Canon Janet Chapman and the lives of those with HIV lost this year were remembered. The event finished with performances from poets, musicians and a fashion show by the students of South Birmingham College School of Fashion with the theme of Dame Elizabeth Taylor, who made a significant impact on reducing HIV stigma and discrimination , and who died in March this year.

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Buy It In Birmingham Launches

Freshwinds has launched  Buy It In Birmingham today, this is a new initiative for voluntary sector organisations, social enterprises and other businesses.

Our focus is on providing a vehicle for locally-based third sector organisations, social enterprises and businesses in Birmingham to buy products and services from each other. Buy It In Birmingham is an opportunity for businesses to find support from other local businesses and manufacturers and allow them to find equal, if not better quality goods and services at affordable prices.

Key features of this free-to-use website include:

  • Free comprehensive supplier listings
  • Your own personalised organisation profile page
  • Savings for organisations using the website
For more information and to register, visit the website

Freshwinds to benefit from X Factor charity single.

We are thrilled to announce that Freshwinds will benefit from this year’s X Factor Charity Single.

The single, Wishing on a Star, will be performed on X Factor on Sunday 27 November 2011 and will be available to download on this date. It will also be available to buy in the shops from Monday 28th November 2011.  Proceeds from the single will be going to the charity Together For Short Lives and then, along with 49 other organisations who support life-limited children and their families in the UK, Freshwinds will receive a share of these proceeds.

For more information about Together for Short Lives and the X Factor Charity Single, please visit and


Be…Project LGBT Scene Event – 4th November 2011


Freshwinds staff and volunteers hit the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender scene for a Friday night of fun to promote the Be…Project and promote community safety whilst on the scene particularly around drug taking, alcohol use and sexual risk taking.

On Friday 4th November 2011, over 20 staff and volunteers did not go unnoticed in their bright pink hi-vis jackets, pink flashing bunny rabbit ears and tiaras, and brightly glowing accessories. Mohammed Al-Rahim (Founder, President and CEO), Carol Hebden (VP/Director of Support Services) and Steven Moralee (Director of Development) also support the team. The team also conducted a short questionnaire on sexual health and to investigate the use of sexual health services in Birmingham. Those who took part were entered into a prize draw to win prizes including £100 love to shop vouchers, meals out, bottles of wine and champagne and other goodies. The night was a enormous success with over 170 questionnaires completed and over 20 people interested in volunteering. Feedback from the bars and clubs was excellent and we are already planning our next outing on the scene.

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A Special Thank you…

We would like to give Eden Bar a very special thank you for letting us use their bar as a base, offering two bottles of champagne to the prize fund and for offering special discounts to those people that filled out our questionairre and received a pink freshwinds wristband.

We would also like to thank:

  • The Loft Lounge for adding a meal for 2 to the prize draw
  • Equator for adding a bottle of wine to the prize draw
  • Bromford Housing Group for adding £50.00 of Love2Shop vouchers to the prize draw
  • and also Missing, The Village Inn, Purple Bar & Lounge and Queens for letting us in their venues on the night!

There is still a chance to enter our prize draw!
If you would like to be entered into our prize draw, please click here – entries close on 15th December 2011.

Another Swish Success!

Natalie and I had yet again another very successful Swish event at The Vaults on Saturday and raised £265 for Freshwinds! There was a great atmosphere and you all seemed to be enjoying the lovely cocktails while having a sneak peak at the clothes! Thank you to those who took part and supported us by coming along, these are our models, photographers, makeup artists and hairstylists, DJ, floor staff…, our sponsors, Reah, our fashion show designer and of course you!

We are delighted to announce the winners from the raffle!! Jo Smyth has won beautiful handmade bespoke jewellery from Elephtheria, Tanya Smith has won a wonderful little pamper treatment for her hair from Oliver James Salon, and James Voller has a gift voucher for a gastronomic treat from Bar Estilo, The Mailbox,

Well done winners!!

We are hosting another Swish event December 3rd, your support will be greatly appreciated.

Updates will follow soon for our December event!!

Val and Natalie