Screen Shot 2016-01-25 at 11.23.27One of the North East’s funniest celebrities has given his support to a serious campaign to improve community and health facilities on a Tyneside housing estate.

Meadow Well Estate’s community development charity, The Cedarwood Trust has launched a campaign to encourage North Tyneside Council to allow them to rent a large, empty community centre on the estate to provide much needed facilities for the community.

The trust encourages people to make a real difference to their lives and to the tight knit community in which they live. Celebrating its 35th year, the award winning charity has carried out a number of pioneering projects to raise confidence and aspiration in the people who live on the estate.

Previous projects have changed lives by instilling skills and hope into the community.  From debt counselling and specialist health self-help and support groups, to groups and training for young and old, gardening and catering skills, sport and play have all played a big part in raising aspirations, and improving spaces on the Estate.

Now however, they face their biggest challenge as The Avenues Centre is due to be demolished unless a buyer can be found.

Part of Cedarwood’s plan is to open the centre for other community users. Dyslexia North East England have pledged their support by stating that they would use part of the building as a specialist centre. Their patron, Simon Donald, comedian and co founder of Viz Magazine suffers from Dyslexia and is right behind the campaign.

“ I myself wasn’t diagnosed with the condition until I was 40 years old and when I look back I know that what could have helped me enormously was support. Being shown that I wasn’t alone, being shown that with the right tools and teaching I could achieve equally which would have developed confidence in me instead of it draining away.

“ This kind of help, support and friendly expert advice is exactly what Dyslexia North East offers. Help with assessing, teaching, IT, finding tools to suit each person, connections to trusted specialists in associated fields and much more in terms of that all important word, support. The Avenues Centre would make an ideal location for Dyslexia North East to have a permanent centre to serve the regional community.”

Chief Executive of Cedarwood Trust Phil McGrath said, “We are delighted to have Simon onboard and this demonstrates the powerful support we have for our plans. We’ve also a number of other groups interested in using the facilities which will bring people into the estate and benefit our residents too.”