This morning (2nd November) I signed the papers for our first ever office in the 'Heart of Hailsham' with a lovely lady from Wealden District Council called Julie. She has been an absolute superstar throughout, in fact, all of their staff have been so supportive of us! Without the help of Katherine Jenner from also from Wealden District Council we would have not have found this prime location in the middle of Hailsham high street.
I have wanted a space on the high street ever since I set up Sunflowers, I always pictured a pretty shop window, getting the awards for the best decorated window, making everything yellow and full of sunflowers, bringing joy to those who passed-by. Having a permanent location/office would allow it to become a drop-in place to come and have a chat. This would be in addition to hosting groups and having a back room for counselling. I know I often live in a dream world but I have in fact, been surprised at how far we have come in a year. Although the office space if not on the ground floor (as I had imagined in the scenario above!), we are absolutely thrilled to announce that Wealden District Council have kindly offered us a permanent location in the centre of Hailsham Town Centre to use as our HUB and counselling office, to support the local community, especially with lockdown 2.0 impending!
We will hopefully have the office up and running in a couple of weeks but this won't delay us as all of our team work/volunteer from home, so they can still continue the amazing work they do for our community! The faith and support that Wealden Council have put in to us at Sunflowers CIC is a testament to the hard work that all our volunteers have put in to date, it is perhaps, easy to miss the appreciation they so rightly deserve given how busy everyone is, but without their tireless efforts, we wouldn't be where we are!
It must also be mentioned that all of this had the support of Nus Ghani, MP for Wealden who also lobbied Wealden District Council to help us find a location after meeting the founder and managing director of Sunflowers CIC - Charlotte Brazier at a Wealden Hero Awards presentation. Read Nus Ghani's Press release here: https://www.nusghani.org.uk/news/ghani-secures-support-hailsham-mental-health-and-wellbeing-project
The official new address:
Our new Office Premises from the high street (first floor):
On google maps: