TALK about a busman’s holiday, a construction crew drawn from organisations across Greater Manchester travelled to Hungary recently to work in a community project in Budapest.
The 12-strong team – from Seddon, Bolton at Home, Salix Homes, MSV Housing, Poplar Housing, and Bolton University – were taking part in an initiative by the charity, Foundation for the Future.
They were tasked with converting an attic into a classroom and renovating a homeless shelter. The two-week project was part of a wider initiative to improve housing, education and wellbeing within the local community.
Foundation for the Future works with charities based in Romania, Hungary and Slovenia to assist vulnerable communities with a wide variety of projects, from construction-related initiatives to education, the arts and youth activities. The foundation provides employees and customers with the opportunity to volunteer abroad with charities and to support the work they do in their respective communities.
Seddon’s Josh Hodkinson, a trained plumber, was joint team leader on the project, accompanied by joiner Regan Osborne and apprentice joiner Jack Burdon.
“The entire team did a fantastic job on the project,” said Hodkinson. “This facility will be vital for both young people and the wider community in the years to come, and we had a great time working alongside local teams.
“It was hugely rewarding to learn something new, get out of our comfort zones and empower a community to build a better future. Nothing could beat the feeling of seeing the team’s smiles when we finished the job, and we look forward to participating in the scheme again.”
Jon Lord, chief executive of Bolton at Home, said: “You can see the difference it makes to people participating on the project, with confidence levels and understanding of different cultures improving significantly. We have been told many times that the experience can be life-changing for the people involved.”