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The latest 'tails' from MM & YT UK
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MMRC UK NEWSLETTER | SEPTEMBER 2018
 
BACK AT IT!


While it's not officially autumn, the cooler air and shorter days definitely mean it's right around the corner.  One minute, it seemed like we were in the lazy dog days of summer and then suddenly, it was time for backpacks, jumpers and back-to-school hoopla.

Also, it means the start of our fourth year of Mini Mermaid and Young Tritons UK. In the whirlwind of registering schools, meeting and training up new coaches, and sending out programmes packs, I had a moment of 'wow,' as I looked at the number of packages going to more towns, more volunteers and more programmes across the UK. This newsletter gives you a glimpse into the great work going on in all our locations. 

Last year saw a number of exciting firsts. First programmes on the Wirral, first community programmes in London and our first ever Mini Mermaid ambassadors (High Fins to Ria, Leila and Mahum!).

That fab trend continues. In Leeds, in conjunction with the Leeds City Council and Leeds Community Foundation, we ran the Healthy Holiday Club over the summer for the children in the Woodhouse Moor area of the city. 

To support the funding from organisations like The Jane Tomlinson Appeal, The Arsenal Foundation and The Vinci Group, we're running (literally) our annual fundraising campaign, Dawn Til Dusk on 29 Sept. Check out the details below. We'd love to have you join us. 


Finally, it's important to me that you all can see how we're structured and how we use the funds and grants we get. Read more about this below. As always, I welcome any questions or comments you have. 

Welcome to 2018-2019! #highfins #ittakesatribe #thefinishlineisjustthebeginning

 
 




Hannah Corne, Mini Mermaid and Young Tritons UK Executive Director
 


Dawn 'Til Dusk Challenge

On 29 September 2018, you're all invited to join us for our 2nd Annual ‘Dawn ‘Til Dusk' Challenge. This year, in another first, we'll hold the challenge in both Leeds and London. 

So how does it work? From sunrise to sunset, relay teams will run/walk/skip/jog/dance non-stop in Highbury Fields in London and Roundhay Park in Leeds.

To make it through the almost 12 hours (thank goodness for shorter days), the more legs the merrier. We would love to have as many of you as possible join us for a leg of the relay. Last year, we were thrilled to see our Mini Mermaids and their families join us for a part of the day (and take on a few laps). 


Like to join? Yes! Drop an email to Colleen Krenzer at colleen@minimermaidrunningclub.org with the time you'd like to come. To support the fundraising, we're asking for a suggested donation of £10.  http://bit.ly/2wcXEnq

The challenge truly celebrates the Mini Mermaid and Young Triton communities and the spirit of 'it takes a tribe' and 'the finish line is just the beginning.' Through our collective efforts, as the sun goes down on 29 September, we hope to have raised £5000, which will allow us to bring our programmes to more communities in need throughout the UK. 

Summer Healthy Holiday Club, Leeds

 

We were honoured this past year to receive a grant from the  Leeds Community Foundation to run the summer Healthy Holiday Club. This marked the first time we ran versions of our programmes in the summer; next year, we hope to do even more.  

In the UK alone, more than 3 million children risk going hungry during the holidays. Through this programme, not only could children ages 7-11 get a free, balanced breakfast and lunch, but they also tested out some of the fun, confidence-building activities we do throughout the year with our Mini Mermaids and Young Tritons.  


Led by Holly Button, Ann Akers, Elizabeth Payne-Stephenson, more than 50 children participated in the programme, hosted at the Woodhouse Community Centre

And a high fins to The Real Junk Food Project Leeds, who provided balanced meals for the children each day. 

 
Starting the day with yoga at the Woodhouse Community Centre

HOW WE WORK


It's critical to me that everyone who donates to Mini Mermaid and Young Tritons UK, whether through time, funds or resources, understands how we're structured, how we work and how we allocate funds and grants.

When I first started Mini Mermaid and Young Tritons UK, I made the conscious decision to establish it as not-for-profit, Community Interest Company.

So what does this mean? Like a charity, we are regulated by UK fundraising bodies. The main difference between us and a charity is that our directors can also function as employees. Currently, we have two part-time employees; any other people resources come from the tireless efforts of our volunteers.

To ensure transparency and accountability, we follow rules set out by the UK Government ‘Office of the Regulator of Community Interest Companies.’ As part of that, each year, we submit a report to Companies House.

Just as important as sharing our structure, I wanted to give you an idea of how we use the funds and grants we receive. Organisations from which we’ve received funding include The Jane Tomlinson Appeal, The VINCI UK Foundation, The Arsenal Foundation, Tesco’s Groundworks, Leeds Community Foundation, and Awards for All. In addition we have generous club and individual sponsors. As a result, 90 percent of our programmes are free or heavily subsidised.

Running a programme costs approximately £50 per child. The costs for the programmes fall into three main categories:

  • Programme Resources

  • Volunteer Training

  • Insurance

PROGRAMME RESOURCES: Within the programmes, we continually evaluate the value children receive. In addition to the professionally-developed curriculums, our programmes provide children with materials to record and celebrate their experience, come together as a team, and allow them to continually reflect on the experience and their achievements.

Each child receives a high quality t-shirt; a full colour 28 page journal designed to capture their imagination and reflect on each week’s lesson; and a 5K challenge bib and a fabulous medal and certificate upon completion of the programmes.

Also, we provide our tremendous volunteer coaches with the materials they will need to run the programme, from pens, pencils and marker pens, to first aid kits and whistles. This year so far, we have posted almost 40 packages!

VOLUNTEER TRAINING: Volunteer coaches are a vital part of our success. To best prepare them to deliver Mini Mermaid and Young Tritons UK programmes, we provide suitable and comprehensive training. This includes in-person new coaching sessions, training videos and individual curriculum and programme guide books. As part of the training, we provide clear information on out of pockets expenses for which coaches can be reimbursed. For example, we reimburse our volunteers for the balanced snacks they give our Mermaids and Tritons to give them physical, emotional and mental fuel. This is especially critical when we work in areas of need.

INSURANCE: As with any organisation, we ensure we carry the proper insurance to protect all participants in our Mini Mermaid and Young Tritons UK programmes. Also, as a Community Interest Company, we are responsible for conducting all enhanced DBS and reference checks on our volunteers.  

I hope this gives you a sense of just how grateful we are for all donations and how mindful we are as an organisation to be as efficient and responsible as possible. Also, I'm always open for any questions that you have.

 
Programme resources help each child capture, celebrate and reflect on the lessons they've learned and experiences they've had in Mini Mermaid and Young Tritons UK
Mini Mermaid Merchandise
 
Don't forget that you can purchase your own bit of Mini Mermaid and Young Tritons world!
 
Here is a peek at the FINTASTIC Mini Mermaid socks, which are our favourite things at Mermaid Towers!

100% of the profits will go back into the delivery and development of Mini Mermaid and Young Triton programmes.

Not only do you get some AWESOME kit, but you also get a warm fuzzy feeling of helping out a grassroots organisation.
Check it out! http://bit.ly/2NBzVYZ
This is the very dull bit... 

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Mini Mermaid Running Club UK · 271 Lidgett Lane · Leeds, Lds LS17 6PD · United Kingdom

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