Good and Bad Help

Purpose and confidence can transform lives. We know this but how do we know that what we’re doing has a positive, sustainable effect on people and communities?

Helping for the sake of helping can sometimes result in ‘bad help’ that offers short term fixes and fails to hand the reins back to individuals when they’re ready to take over.

This is what the Good Help Project hopes to clarify. The brainchild of Nesta, a global innovation foundation that backs new ideas to tackle big challenges, the project is bringing together case studies from all over the UK to help create a ‘good practice guide for good help’.

Grapevine is one of those case studies – alongside organisations such as The Stroke Association, British Lung Foundation, Mayday Trust, Whizz Kidz and many more. We’ve shared how our work in supporting young people with learning disabilities and the communities in which they live aims to enable everyone to get free of service dependency.

Clare spoke at the launch event in early February and hopes this project might signal a sea-change in the way social programmes are designed and delivered. The project’s seven characteristics of ‘good help’ will also provide public services with a barometer check on how they’re currently delivering these programmes.

Clare will also judge the forthcoming ‘Good Help Awards’ to search out the best of the best in services that are helping people take action.

Read more here:

Coventry Youth Activists LIVE on the BBC

Yesterday Molly and Niamh chLive On Airatted to Viv Minett about our TeenVine Plus Project and Coventry Youth Activists

They are on the look out for a sofa, preferably on wheels for an event they are hosting in the City Centre on Tuesday 20th February called ‘CYA on the Sofa’

Listen in to the show to find out more details and to see how you can get involved, tune in at 1hr 14mins

If you can help with the sofa call or email Molly

Good and Bad Help

Our CEO, Clare Wightman, will be a keynote speaker on Tuesday 6 February when national innovation foundation Nesta and social impact lab OSCA bring together practitioners, policy makers, thinkers and funders in London to launch the Good Help report.

Major public service challenges – such as in social care, youth unemployment and long-term health conditions – require people to take action themselves. But many public services fail to work with people’s own sense of purpose and undermine rather than develop the confidence the need to do it.

Good Help explores great examples of how good services give people more control of their lives. It describes Grapevine helping others achieve their own personal goals by connecting them with people across the community.

 You can join the debate by viewing the live stream of the event at from 6pm, and by using the hashtag #Good&badhelp on Twitter. 


TeenVine Plus Family Get Together

In no particular order: Soup, dreams, families and a working microphone – Key ingredients for a successful get together.

Last night at Backhaus & Co there was a gathering of families brought together by our TeenVine Plus team.

We challenged them to think about the moral of the story told by Coleman.

Coleman telling his story

This set the scene for us to think about dreaming big for the lives of the TeenVine Plus young people.

One of the young people, Jacob, who is also one of our Coventry Youth Activis

ts, shared that his dream was to see and feel fairness. We couldn’t agree more!

If you would like to find out more about our TeenVine Plus Project follow along on FaceBook or Twitter



Call Out For Young Campaigners

Coventry Youth Activists
Coventry Youth Activists are looking to expand their team

Coventry Youth Activists are a group of young people who are passionate about making change happen.

Their aim is to bring disabled and non-disabled young people together to lead on campaigns and make sure everyone’s voice is heard.

If you are aged 13-18 and interested in getting involved please get in touch with Molly at Grapevine on 0247631040 or


Looking for work? Need support?

Accelerate your journey into work
Coleman has started working alongside Alex on the Accelerate team. That means we can now help more people wanting paid work.
If you or someone you know could benefit then send Coleman an email or give him a call: 024 7663 1040
“Accelerate is a free employment support service that can build your confidence, give you training, improve your skills and provide valuable work experience – all geared towards helping you find a job that suits you.
We specialise in supporting people who would like to work but for various reasons find it hard to get a job and enjoy all the benefits that employment brings. We offer practical help to deal with problems that have been holding you back including covering the costs of childcare and subsidised travel while you’re accessing our service.
Accelerate is a partnership of 23 local organisations providing co-ordinated employment support to people who are at a disadvantage when looking for work.
Our partnership includes training providers, charities, housing associations, disability support, women’s only services, wellbeing and mental health organisations, enterprise start-up, childcare providers, local authorities, community radio and employer networks.
Project Aims
* Helping those furthest from the labour market towards and into employment
* Providing the means through which disadvantaged people become job ready
* Assisting participants to access learning, training and job opportunities
* Enabling participants to overcome barriers to employment
* Supporting those with complex barriers move closer to employment
* Providing holistic support including financial inclusion, employment skills and basic skills
* Targeted, flexible and individualised support
* Connection across the partnership
* Geographically accessible
* Connected partnership, ensuring participants access full range of services
Key target groups:
People who are unemployed or economically inactive including  but not limited to:
* Lone parents
* Non-custodial offenders/ex-offenders
* People with physical and mental ill health
* BAME communities
* People with substance misuse issues
* People needing basic literacy and numeracy skills
* People with ESOL needs
* People with disabilities
Grapevine’s Accelerate team mainly work with people with a learning disability but we can refer people on to other Accelerate partners.”

Changing Places

Changing Places
Update from Grapevine Empowerment Service

On the 28th November, people in Polesworth met with staff from Grapevine and staff from Warwickshire County Council to talk about the Changing Places Campaign.

“The Changing Places Consortium launched its campaign in 2006 on behalf of the over 1/4 of a million people who cannot use standard accessible toilets. This includes people with profound and multiple learning disabilities, motor neurone disease, multiple sclerosis, cerebral palsy, as well as older people.

To use the toilet in safety and comfort, many people need to be able to access a Changing Places, which have more space and the right equipment, including a height adjustable changing bench and a hoist.”

The people in Polesworth spoke up about the difference it would make to their daily lives to be able to go out without worrying about getting caught short!

We know there is a great need for accessible toilets in Warwickshire towns, and the good news is that Warwickshire County Council has some money to put some in.

Changing Places

Coventry Youth Partnership

Coventry Youth Partnership
Grapevine is part the new Coventry Youth Partnership

Coventry Youth Partnership

The new Coventry Youth Partnership, led by Positive Youth Foundation, will offer youth centres through to targeted youth work – in place of services the city council is unable to run due to national funding cuts. The partnership will be working closely with Coventry City Council and other key stakeholders to deliver high quality youth work.

PYF founder Rashid Bhayat:

“Coventry Youth Partnership offers an exciting opportunity for the city to get this right and to develop a generation of people who are proud of their city and benefit from the range of support it has given them. It provides a platform to celebrate young people, and for anyone interested in supporting our future generations to get involved through collaborative working.”

Can you spot our Coleman and Molly in the photo?

If you want to find out more have a look at the recent article.