Island Roads gives charity boost to The Way Forward

Posted on: March 20, 2024 at 8:51 am

An Island charity has taken delivery of a minibus purchased with the help of a £14,000 grant from Island Roads’ Isle of Wight Foundation.

The Way Forward Programme provides support, training and employment for people aged from 12 upwards with physical and learning disabilities, autism and people recovering from mental ill health.

The money donated by the Isle of Wight Foundation, alongside the Way Forward Programme’s self-funded share of £10,000, enabled the charity to replace one of their ageing minibuses coming to the end of its serviceable life.

As well as taking customers to and from its centre on Daish Way, Newport, the smart 12-seater bus will be used for daily sessions and respite holidays to enrich the users’ lives.

The Isle of Wight Foundation, which was established by the companies behind Island Roads – Ringway Island Roads, Meridiam, Island Roads Services and Vinci Concessions – gives grants to Island good causes each year and has now distributed more than £750,000 in the ten years it has been running.

Tracey Hill, The Way Forward chief executive, said comfortable and reliable transport for its customers was important.

“For example, we are going on a four-night holiday to Center Parcs in Longleat, and it will ensure they have a good journey to and from the park,” she said.

Tracey added: “I would like to thank Island Roads and the Isle of Wight Foundation for its generosity. Over the years they have given us several grants that have made a huge difference. Moreover, they have also really taken an interest in what we do and we have formed a very strong partnership.”

Part of Osel Enterprises, The Way Forward Programme organises a range of activities from its customers, from art and crafts to cookery and drama.

Rob Gillespie, IW Foundation chairman, said: “It is marvellous to help such enthusiastic local charities make such a difference to the lives of people on the Island. Working with The Way Forward and providing well-deserved funding towards this wonderful charity’s minibus is particularly rewarding, as we know how important reliable transport is.”