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Chatham Maritime Trust supports the local community through events, grants and sponsorship

Chatham Maritime Trust is a registered charity, whose charitable objects are primarily concerned with the wellbeing of the Chatham Maritime Estate, including its landscaping, environment, infrastructure, flood protection and amenities.

In addition, the Trust’s objects cover the provision (directly or indirectly) of recreation and leisure facilities for the Chatham Maritime Estate and its neighbourhood, the Medway Towns, and others who conveniently make use of them, and provision for the education and assistance of the young and other members of the Medway Towns community in order to develop their physical, mental and spiritual capacities.

To this end the Trust maintains a Community Fund, which it uses to support these additional community objectives.  This support can be by direct organisation of activities, or by way of a grant to others to provide these activities.  Please note that the charity is restricted by its constitution to certain activities in support of the population of the Medway Towns.     

The Community Fund has limited resources; consequently, preference is given to initiatives that support the immediate community. Any sums that are not used in the financial year are carried over.

All grant applications are considered by a panel of four Trustees, two of whom are independent of the Trust, in conjunction with the Chief Executive.  The Trust aims to support a number of different groups and activities and should not be seen to be supporting the same events year on year. For further information and an application form click on the links at the bottom of the page.  As a guide  applications will be considered if: 

  • the application comes from a registered charity, organisation or companies or groups that are active in the community.  Newly formed groups will need to demonstrate a genuine community benefit.  Applications from individuals are not normally considered nor will the Trust supplement revenue funding.
  • Applicants need to demonstrate their proposal fits the objects detailed in the Community Fund Grant Policy – Terms & Conditions as below
  • the proposal must benefit the population of the Medway Towns.  Priority will be given to proposals that benefit the Chatham Maritime Estate, then the Estate community, then the adjacent areas.

Over the past few years, Chatham Maritime Trust has made grants to organisations including:

  • St. Mary’s Island Primary School (equipment)
  • Arethusa Venture Centre
  • Morning Star Trust (sailing trips residential and day trips)
  • Duke of Edinburgh’s Award Scheme (Medway Panel)
  • Kent & Medway Walking Bus
  • SMILE (SMI Primary School PTA)
  • Saintara (SMI Active Retirement Residents Association)
  • Medway Youth Parliament  (Try Angle awards)
  • Fairbridge in Kent
  • Universities at Medway Boat Race
  • The Crafting Table (SMI Arts & Crafts Group)
  • Medway Youth Trust (overseas educational trip)
  • Nucleus Arts (workshops)

Medway Youth Trust

The Trust has recently provided funding to Medway Youth Trust to support a three year training programme for fifteen vulnerable 21 year-olds on an educational trip to Colombia where they will work on a coffee farm, dairy and in a school. Although fifteen will directly benefit this year and for each of the next two years  the programme’s focus is on impacting as many young people in the Medway area as can be reached through post-trip activities carried out by the participants on their return.

These individuals will become ambassadors raising aspirations and widening horizons of their peers and will be encouraged to build on their experiences, influencing and motivating others to raise their own aspirations through a series of workshops, presentations, blogs, mentoring or as team leaders on future programmes within Medway Youth Trust and its partners.

The group of young people had a very emotional send-off; all were positive and excited and a little nervous about facing the unexpected. One of the youngsters had never even flown before. Prior to their departure the group managed to raise £21,004 of their £22,400 target. The group of young adults have been nominated and chosen to win the first ‘Young People United’ award for diversity and team commitment. They had to make their acceptance speech whilst queuing with their luggage next to the airport coach; unfortunately they will miss the award ceremony as it takes place whilst they are in Colombia.

Feedback from the youngsters ” so posts here have been few and far between but rest assured that New Horizons are flying high on Colombian turf. Adventure, challenge, hard work, beautiful scenery, warm and fascinating people, deep conversations, bugs with glowing eyes, heavy downpours, lightning that lights up the sky, building rain covers, clearing trees, digging drains, salsa dancing, countless new fruits, delicious food, meeting inspiring people, making cheese, picking coffee, talking to school children in Spanish, playing Colombian volleyball, taking part in workshops that open our minds and hearts and teach us lessons we never imagined. New Horizons are doing it all. There are no words to describe it. New Horizons is New Horizons“.

“We even took to making a new bridge today to help the farm down the road from us who have a disabled child and elderly couple. the last one was broken by a bull. We stopped as it rained and then when the other group got back from the diary factory they told us the bridge had broken so we are going to have another go tomorrow”.
Shannon Waters

Chatham Maritime Trust Trustee, Deborah Sims, attended The New Horizons Graduation evening on 10th December 2015 which was held on the Medway University Campus; the event celebrated everything the participants had achieved on the programme and a chance to thank all the people who had supported them on such a unique journey.

Medway Youth Trust has three main goals – to prepare, improve and inspire giving every child in Medway the best chance of life and to ensure young people are learning and prepared for the future. This is achieved through a range of programmes, services and activities throughout the Medway towns. In January 2016 the Medway Messenger named Medway Youth Trust as its Charity of the Year for 2016.

Medway Youth Trust has won the NYA Hear by Rights Gold Award – this means that they are recognised for their outstanding youth participation activities in the community. For example, their Youth Forum is requested by the local authority, NHS and other organisations to represent the view of local young people.

Trust Funding 2015-16

For the financial year 1st April 2015 to 31st March 2016 the Trust has given support to the following organisations:

  • £3,000 – Medway Youth Trust (Horizons – educational trip overseas)
  • £250  – The Crafting Table – Craft Group on St. Mary’s Island
  • £3,600 – Morning Star Trust (7 day sailing trip)
  • £3,000 – Nucleus Arts (community workshops for those with dementia)
  • £1,000 – Medway Street Pastors (operating in Rochester and Chatham)
  • £1,000 – Rochester & North Kent Music & Drama Festival Association (performing arts)
  • £300 – Try Angle Awards (recognising young peoples achievements in Medway)
  • £981 – GK Unions (Universities at Medway’s Student Union Varsity 2016)
  • £400 – St. Mary’s Island History Group Project (20 years of St. Mary’s Island)

More recently the Trust has supported the following organisations:

  • £1,500 – Lordswood U13s Football Team (sponsorship of kit for the 2016/17 season)
  • £3,190 – Chatham Marine Cadets Unit (equipment)
  • £2,500 – Rainham Cricket Club (funding towards the building of a new club house)
  • £1,650 to Morning Star Trust (a residential sailing weekend)
  • £2,500 to Medway Youth Trust (educational overseas trip)
  • £1,000 to St. John’s C of E Infant School (regeneration of play area)
  • £1,100 to Medway Sunlight Rotary (National Rotary Kids Day Out)
  • £823 to Music Man Project (Medway) (promotional material for new project )
  • £2,098 to 10th Medway Sea Scouts (for canoes and paddles)
  • £2,000 to Soccer Street Foundation (mentoring programme through football)
  • £625 to Young Lives Foundation (activity day/residential course and mentoring programme)
  • £3,000 to Dandelion Time (therapeutic programmes for Medway families)
  • £1,955 to Family Trust (practical money courses in local schools)
  • £3,000 to WetWheels Foundation (boat trips for disabled and disadvantaged people)
  • £1,000 to 1st St. Mary’s Island Rainbow, Brownie & Guide Unit (new programme material, badges, books etc.)
  • £1,000 to Chatham Royal Marine Cadets Unit (field kit)
  • £100 to Rivermead Inclusive Trust (community art project)
  • £1,500 to GK Unions (student well being programme)
  • £1,100 to Medway Sunlight Rotary Club (National Kids Day Out (from Medway School)
  • £1,000 to Living River Foundation (Litter Free Maritime campaign)
  • £1,100 to Medway Sunlight Rotary Club (National Kids Day Out (Medway children)
  • £2,040 for Morning Star Trust (voyage for Medway young people)

In the financial year 2018-19 Chatham Maritime Trust has supported the following organisations:

Soccer Street Foundation: a 10-week start-up programme for vulnerable people aged 18-24 in Gillingham. Two candidates who attended this programme secured their immediate futures, one was offered a traineeship and had an interview lined up and another made a real impression and was offered a job.

Medway Youth Awards. The event is a showcase for young people who achieve in difficult circumstances and encourage other young people to make positive choices; it also takes young people away from crime and anti-social behaviour.

Young Lives Foundation whose focus is all about making a difference to the lives of young people and improving outcomes for vulnerable people. Our funding provided: a young person placement on a YLF residential course; a young person placement on a 10-week mentoring programme and an activity day for a young person. YLF provide young people with the opportunity to participate in challenging and enriching activities so that they can broaden their horizons and develop life skills so they are able to make informed decisions.

The Family Trust who provide money management skills programmes in Medway primary schools in a fun and interactive way enabling children to learn about money at an early stage in their lives and make informed decisions to avoid problems later in life. This is particularly relevant in today’s debt-ridden society. This project was a great success; 53 schools were visited over the year with 99 classes involved and 2,820 completing all course sessions.

Dandelion Time provides farm-based therapeutic programmes for children and families affected by domestic violence, abuse, trauma and family breakdown. The Trust’s funding enabled support for 3 children and their families. Family A had experienced trauma and lifelong domestic abuse, the separation of the parents, a stressful court case and having to be re-housed. The programme enabled the re-building of relationships, the well-being of the family improved and they left with a new happier narrative and shared memories to shape their future. Family B had an acrimonious relationship, cultural issues affecting parenting and conflict which led to Police involvement. The therapeutic programs led to transformation of relationships and the experiences they had boosted self-confidence and emotional expression and created a brighter future for them. Family C involved a referred child that attended Dandelion Time sessions with both parents following a lifetime of trauma resulting from the violence of a family member, bereavement, addiction and mental health issues. The family engaged enthusiastically and the parents observed an improvement in their child’s confidence, communications with others and gained the ability to relax and have fun in a way that he was unable to before.

The three families who have completed the programmes have demonstrated a range of positive outcomes to boost their individual and collective well-being as well as the educational engagement of the children.

Wetwheels Foundation provides opportunities for disabled and disadvantaged people to access water in specially designed boats. The Trust’s funding meant that 144 individuals were able to enjoy an experience on the River Medway and they received fantastic feedback from both groups and individuals. Some of the organisations that participated were: Carers First, Aztec Day Services, MS Society Medway Group and Age UK Medway.

St. Mary’s Island Rainbow, Brownie and Scout Unit received funding for the provision of up-to-date material, i.e. books, activity cards etc. as effective September 2018 the Girl Guiding Unit had the biggest overhaul in its history, revamping its iconic badges and activities to create a programme which it hopes will appeal to ‘every girl’. Details of more than 800 badges and activities were designed to give the skills and experiences young women will need to thrive, succeeds, make positive changes and be happy in the modern world.

Chatham Royal Marines Cadet Unit Chatham. The grant enabled the purchase of much needed equipment particularly as some cadets are from challenging backgrounds /deprived circumstances which doesn’t allow them to contribute to the provision of equipment. The Unit has an aspirational policy of absolute equality and aim to provide all cadets with exactly the same opportunities and experiences. All cadets are treated equally whatever their background and circumstances and given the same training and opportunities. The grant ensures that Medway teenagers from challenging backgrounds will continue to benefit from the improved life chances offered by the Unit now and into the future.

Rivermead Inclusive Trust. A small grant was provided in support of a community arts project in Medway bringing people together and the monies raised from that will be given to 2 local charities and support the work of the RIT in three Medway schools – Walderslade Primary, Hoo St. Werburgh and Rivermead School. The Trust’s vision is to become a leader in providing excellence in teaching and learning through collaboration and partnership; it ensures that it is about ‘the complete person’ for all.

GK Unions on the Universities at Medway Campus. The funds given for this project “Give It A Go” focus on a programme of activities for the development and support of student wellbeing during the busy exam term. The events are driven by students and all activities are created to be diverse and inclusive to develop students’ physical, spiritual and mental capacities.

Chatham Maritime Trust also continues to support the provision of a Youth Leader for St. Mary’s Island Youth Club known as Castaways which is now thriving and has a healthy membership of some 70 Members deterring young people from anti-social behaviour and crime and provides a good networking unit for them. The dedication of the volunteers and support of the Youth Leader, Rodney Parr, Club Secretary & Administrator, David Taylor, should be recognized and acknowledged.

Chatham Maritime Trust is also responsible for the organisation of the Food & Drink Festival held on the Chatham Maritime Estate which has become an annual fixture in the calendar and provides a great fundraising opportunity for other charities such as Medway Sunlight Rotary Club. The annual Dragon Boat Race which forms a focus of the 3-day festival has in fact become their main fundraising project. In 2018 this event raised over £15,000 for Rotary Children’s Hospice Holidays and local charities and over a five year period has raised over £50,000 for charity.

Since the start of the new financial year 2019-20, Chatham Maritime Trust has given its support to the following:

Medway Sunlight Rotary Club for National Kids Day Out.

Living River Foundation for Litter Free Maritime Project.

Morning Star Trust for a short residential sailing trip during the UK Sail Training small Ships Race in October 2019.

The Family Trust  for Wellbeing courses in Medway schools.

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