Despite the challenging period of lockdown a large number of our colleagues have still been working very hard and often gone out of their way to ensure our services are still available and that young people continue to receive the support they require.

Below, managers from the following services have highlighted staff members and teams who deserve to be recognised and for whom we are all proud and lucky to have working here at YMCA Trinity Group.


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“All of our accommodation teams have been working 24 hours a day to support those who are living in our services through this difficult time. For many of the people we work with they lost their normal support networks as soon as the lockdown happened. Our accommodation staff have been amazing in supporting each person, helping them to understand and adapt to this unprecedented situation. 

We have seen an increase in mental health difficulties and substance misuse but we have successfully worked with our external partners in each locality to ensure each person gets the support they need. I am hugely proud of our staff teams and the resilience and dedication they have shown this year.”

Amanda (Accommodation Director)

Queen Anne House


“A big thank you to all of the staff that were working through the lockdown from all departments.

A special mention to Susana Iglesias relief worker who though the early lockdown period managed to get hold of donations of TV’s, iPads and game counsels, we can’t express how much that these items benefited our residents mental health, she also used the dance studio to help residents exercise and the back garden to help and support residents exercising using gentle martial arts (she also has a Third Dan Black Belt).  

Big thank you to Montana who through the lockdown picked up food donations from Marks & Spencer, including lots of chocolate Easter eggs which went down rather well.

Thanks to Sharon Hughes who is continuing to pick up Social Care subs (money) for all looked after young people in the hostel.

An honourable mention for Lewis Owen as well who arranged for ‘Beats: to use one of the meeting rooms upstairs so they continue their education programme/course working with Asylum seekers (social distancing was adhered to) they were over the moon using the YMCA’s facilities.  

Finally, a huge thank you to the relief staff and our Assistant Accommodation Project Workers who helped with filling in shifts as well as the night staff who remained on their normal rota and continued to work despite the challenges they faced.

It was a very scary time at the start of lockdown but we became one team, so big shout out to all of housing, maintenance and the cleaners who kept the place running and off course to our residents.”

Heidi (Accommodation Manager)

Susana and Olivia

Gibson Lodge


Firstly, starting with APW Kerry Catling. She has been exceptional. She has gone above and beyond throughout the lockdown with picking up last minute shifts, these have been days and nights. Kerry often works a lot at the weekend so has devoted a lot of her time to support the young people here and she has managed to do this whilst having a young family at home. Whilst adhering to social distancing she has supported our young people in so many ways by delivering new life skills to them and doing fun exciting activities with them. Kerry is a pleasure to be around and is always so positive at work to her colleagues and the young people.


Secondly, I’d like to mention Cameron Klein-Sprokkelhorst (Bank Worker). He started working with us in the lockdown and has done countless amounts of shifts and helped us. Every shift I have asked him to cover he has never turned down and he has managed to do so whilst returning back to work full time now. Cameron is always positive and motivates the young people to become successful. He has managed to contact local companies to get donations such as a BBQ for our young people. Often teaching the young people vital life skills they will use later on in life.”

Devon (Senior Project Worker) & Blake (Deputy Accommodation Manager)


Time Stop


“I’d like to say an almighty thank you to all of the staff at Time Stop who worked throughout the lockdown period. It is impossible to pick out individuals as everyone was amazing in their own way, they are all my lockdown heroes. It was a very scary time for the young people who were living at Time Stop and despite having less staff and being under pressure, the staff went above & beyond to give extra time and support to those who were struggling and worried. I may be biased but I think all Time Stop staff have a kind of magic which they bring to their work day in day out.

The local community has also been so kind to our residents with various donations of food & reusable face masks.”

Karen (Housing Manager)


Wellington Street


“I would like to thank all staff working in HRS and Parent and Child during the COVID Lockdown. It was not an easy time but our staff kept going and were amazing. I would like to thank Leah our Senior Accommodation Project Worker for all the rota’s put in place to help minimise staff at risk, all our HRS staff: Iain, Carrie, Lola, Emma, Carmen, Martin, Maria and Parent and Child Amy and Sam for working really hard to support our young people during this time. Our Night staff – Tony, Shane, Julie and Stephen who kept going all throughout the lock down time and all our relief and APW staff.  We would and could not of done this without you all. 

A big thank you also to our reception and admin staff Lou and Lucy at Wellington Street.”

Helen (Accommodation Manager)



“I would like to nominate one of our project workers, Amy Low, who worked throughout the lockdown and was also working on the front line for the NHS. She is a real asset to the team and has played a huge part during these challenging times.”


Danielle ​(Senior Project Worker)


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“Our childcare team at YMCA Trinity Group have worked extremely hard throughout this difficult time and each of our settings would like to say a massive thank you to all of our dedicated practitioners and support staff that have kept our childcare running to the highest standards, to support the children of key workers and vulnerable families.

Our practitioners have continued to ensure that throughout the pandemic, the children attending still had a sense of normality, routines, activities and most importantly lots of fun! This unexpected time has seen our settings face many challenges, but our strong and robust management team have guided and supported our practitioners, whilst continually implementing new guidelines and safe practices to ensure the safety of our staff, children and families. We could not be prouder of them! A big thank you to Kim, Jess, Sam, Judith, Louisa and Nicole who have led our settings throughout lockdown.”

Amanda (Childcare Programme Manager)


A little message from each of our teams…


YMCA Childcare St. Margaret’s Road


“I would like to say a special thank you to the staff at YMCA Childcare St Margaret’s Road who continued to work throughout the pandemic. Our staff members Morgan Anderson, Claire Lipscombe, Sacha Mirgaux and Joshua Gallon continued to provide high quality childcare and ensured that working parents, and vulnerable children, were still able to access childcare during the last few difficult months. They have embraced all the changes along the way and continued to work in a professional manner, ensuring that, as far as possible, the children’s routines were maintained.

A special mention must also go to Deputy Childcare Manager Bethany Nichols, Lisa Newby, Rebecca Storey, Debra Atkins, Elizabeth Badger, Marianna English and Jade Trembath who returned throughout June/July/August when we reopened to more of our families, and offered Holiday Club throughout the Summer.”

Kim (Childcare Manager)

YMCA Childcare Exning Road


“At YMCA Childcare Exning Road we want to say a big thank you to both our teams who have worked so hard throughout lockdown. Team A consists of Ellie, Nina, Megan and Lola and Team B consists of Jodie, Lauren and Christine. Also, a thank you to our bank staff Hannah and Vicki who have also worked really hard during this time to ensure we have the right amount of staff needed to keep our nursery open.

We appreciate how hard everyone has worked throughout this challenging and difficult time so thank you!”

 Jess (Childcare Manager) and Judith (Deputy Childcare Manager)

YMCA Childcare Grundisburgh


“A big thank you to all the team at YMCA Childcare Grundisburgh for their continued great work and commitment to the nursery through Covid-19. Nathalie, Modupe and Tracy were thought of lots whilst on Furlough. A big shout out to Steph and Tiff who supported Jess to reopen the nursery on 1 June 2020 and finish the term off with the small bubble of children they had in. Without dedicated staff like these, YMCA Childcare Grundisburgh would not be the thriving setting it is. Looking forward to having you all back together for the start of the new term. Thank you will just never be enough.”

Jess (Childcare Manager)

YMCA Childcare Blinco Grove


“I would like to say a big thank you to the staff at YMCA Childcare Blinco Grove for all their hard work and dedication helping to keep the nursery open for keyworkers during Covid-19.

Rachel and Riley our two apprentices have been a great asset during this time and have developed greatly within their roles. Also a big thank you to Joanna who came and supported the team from our Exning Road setting.

I would also like to welcome Laura and Rachel our new room leaders, Freya our Deputy room leader and Leah and Pippa our new early year’s educators to the team. They have all started over the past few weeks. A huge thank you to you all.”

Sam (Childcare Manager)

YMCA Childcare Providence


“The staff at YMCA childcare Providence have worked extremely hard to support keyworkers throughout the pandemic providing crucial care for children and their families. They continued to uphold outstanding practices and ensure the well-being of the children was paramount, whilst creating a safe, nurturing and fun environment for the children.

Our two Room Leaders Nicole and Louisa took on extra managerial duties and ensured smooth continuous practices, whilst Michelle the Deputy Room Leader, alongside Early Years Educators Leah, Olivia and Megan, continued to support the senior team to provide these opportunities for keyworker families across Ipswich. The whole team should be extremely proud of themselves for all their hard work and dedication throughout lockdown. Thank you for upholding our YMCA values and practices, your hard work has really paid off. What a team you are.”

Sophie (Childcare Manager)



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“The lockdown period was incredibly difficult for Team Cresset, and special thanks must go to those who have spent so much time and effort contacting our customers as we postponed or cancelled well over 100 shows and events including weddings, conferences and countless performances. Pam, Ali, Tracy and Jenina managed this enormous operation brilliantly from home and did an incredible job of supporting, reassuring and retaining our customers.

While most Cresset operations stopped, the building of course kept going, supporting YMCA accommodation services, the nursery and the Kingfisher centre, as well as ensuring security, cleaning operations, maintenance and compliance was maintained. Our thanks go to Nikkie, Brian, Lynda, Kerry and Carol who kept everything moving in the background, even while the doors were shut.

As we work towards reopening each area of our business, we have seen an incredible effort from all our teams to adapt and innovate, working phenomenally hard and going over and above to support each other and the business through this incredibly challenging time. We’re very lucky to have our own special group of heroes!”

Penny & Darren (Head of Cresset Commercial Activities/Operations)



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“Firstly, the Housekeeping Team within Facilities have done a tremendous job in keeping our operational sites sanitised and clean for staff, clients and residents which was greatly appreciated throughout the lockdown period, the delivery within Facilities has overall been well maintained dealing with day to day repairs ensuring the business can continue to deliver its services all within a safe environment. This was initially tricky in the early days when supplies like PPE were short in supply and ability to call upon contractors to deliver services was challenging as again with lockdown and social distancing some companies were not responding.

Despite this, the Facilities Management Team have continued delivering on refurbishment projects and improving the accommodation areas for the business, further house purchases in Ipswich has been managed and planning of future projects is ongoing to ensure we deliver on the Accommodation strategy. Overall a great achievement for the Team!”

Neil (Support Services Director)



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“The Finance Team although working from home have been very busy in delivering their regular functions of Purchase/Sales ledger, Payroll and of course Accounts production. The lockdown has bought additional challenges particularly with the year-end audit which was a combination of working from home & attending site to deal with queries from the auditors.

I am pleased to report that the March 2020 year end accounts were agreed by the Board and signed off in September with a clean Management letter from the Auditors. The department has also been involved in supporting with financial forecasting to support the Board in monitoring the business finances since Covid-19 also with the Government furlough scheme this has meant lots of additional work with the calculations and variations on our finances.

The team has been positive through the lockdown period and kept in touch through MS Teams meetings and formed a chat group on the system!”

Neil (Support Services Director)


Health and Wellbeing

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“A big thank you to all the Health and Wellbeing staff: Mel, Dicky, Samia, Leon, John (Peterborough), Sam, Elle, Tom, Martin (Cambridge) and Harry (Ipswich) as well as the volunteers and the Cresset staff for their support in helping us get ready for the reopening of our gyms. The work that went into preparing the studios and gyms for the return required great teamwork. It wasn’t just about opening the doors there was the marking out the floors inline with guidelines (no easy task), updating Gladstone to allow online bookings, putting together a ‘zoom’ class programme, updating the website and contacting members…. the list goes on! 

You were all fabulous and gave 100% in making sure it was all ready and safe for members to return and attend gyms again. It was a really challenging time but you all rose to it and the government only gave us two weeks to do it! Magic!”

Julie (Health and Wellbeing Programme Manager)

Support and Advice

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“I and the organisation would like to say a huge thank you to Lee Adamson and our AA team for the continuous commitment to the service. Lee has kept everything running since the beginning of the pandemic and done so with hard work and dedication in supporting our key stakeholders and staff during a very difficult time and we could not have done it without him keeping up morale and overcoming challenges on a daily basis. 

I and the organisation would also like to thank Hannah Dalgarno and her team, who have worked since the beginning of the pandemic, supporting some of the most vulnerable people in our communities facing isolation, loneliness and significant mental health issues and illness as a result of covid. Hannah, Amy, Lisa and Dan have worked tirelessly to help and support individuals and faced challenges in doing so during a really difficult time. They have done so with care, commitment and dedication. 

We are so proud of all of you who have worked through the pandemic and again thank you, we could not have got through such a difficult time without any of you.” 

Charley (Programme Manager)


Access to Employment


Amy Satchell, Lisa Todd and Dan Goddard have all worked tirelessly throughout the whole Covid crisis and have remained loyal to their clients, contract and YMCA Trinity Group. Whilst keeping up with their regular levels of support via telephone, zoom and teams they also battled through home schooling and working through the summer holidays to ensure that no client went without.

Amy, Lisa & Dan have continued to support the project and the YMCA and have given information, advice and a listening ear to people who have been struggling most in our local communities. They have remained positive and always supplied their can do attitude throughout this difficult time!

They are all a credit to the Access to Employment team and it is a pleasure to have you working with us.

You are all heroes!”

Hannah (Access to Employment Manager)

Training and Education

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“A huge thank you to everyone involved in our mental health services. As you can imagine, it has been a particularly challenging time for our clients and communities with regards to mental health difficulties. Our team has collectively risen to the challenge in a number of ways, and overcome their own personal and professional stresses to continue to provide crucial support during lockdown.

We had to quickly adapt all of our services to operate remotely and change the way we operate, but through the hard work, flexibility and dedication of our office team and pool of self-employed therapists and trainers, we managed to do this successfully, and I am so proud of them all.

Thanks in particular to our office team of Emma Steadman, Lisa Smith, Sukaina Ladak and Jemma Rowell who have all worked extremely hard to make things happen, and especially having to work remotely throughout this difficult period.”

Ryan (Mental Health Programme Manager)