Testimonials

We’re extremely proud of the wonderful feedback we get from the children we work with, their families and teachers, and the organisations that refer to us. We’ve pulled together just some of their comments so you can see the impact of what we do. Due to the nature of our work, we have removed the names of children and kept the feedback anonymous.

From the children

“I had my own bed. I don’t have one at home.”

“I loved playing Bingo; I saw a deer as well, Bikes were my favourite though!”

"It was all good and I made some new friends"

“The food was really good and there was loads of it.”

“I really enjoyed feeding the chickens. Did you know they give us eggs?”

"When my sister was happy, that was special for me."

From our partner schools

“Every child enjoys their time with the charity. Confidence, raised self-esteem and increased independence are some of the benefits for the children and it must be lovely for them to spend some time where life is fun and calm. Leeds Children’s Charity at Lineham Farm is a fantastic charity and hundreds of children will look back on their holiday with fondness all their lives”.

– Headteacher

“Her brother worked with the charity and as a result was a more positive and sociable person. His attendance at school improved and I hope that you can have the same impact on his sister”

Teacher

“Over the past year, we have sent 11 children on short breaks available through the charity. There were a number of reasons we applied for places for these children, including identified young carers, bereavement, trauma, domestic violence and Social Care involvement.

All of the children who accessed the short breaks benefited enormously from time away from home and school. The breaks encourage independence, build confidence and enable siblings to strengthen relationships away from sometimes challenging circumstances at home. The children have made new friendships and built relationships, as well as having the opportunity to experience activities they would not otherwise access.

On their return to school after the trips, we see children who are happy, calm, refreshed, ready to learn and better able to face the challenges facing them at home and school. Without the support of the charity, the school would be unable to provide access to short breaks for children. The service provided by the charity is invaluable and all the children who have benefited from the breaks speak with great enthusiasm about their time there”.

– Pastoral Care Manager

“Leeds Children’s Charity at Lineham Farm offers something that we cannot – the opportunity for children to ‘get away’ from the oppressive circumstances that they find themselves in, and show them a viable alternative.”

Headteacher

“In every case, the children have come back enthusing about the experiences they have had. If I had not received this positive feedback, I would not have recommended children each year. Parents have also been very grateful that their children have been able to benefit from a holiday when they could not afford to send them. I have seen the benefits of the work you have been doing and I really hope you can continue to provide this excellent facility for children in need.”

– Headteacher

Other feedback

“I picked the children up yesterday teatime, they were smiling, tired and could not stop talking about what a fantastic time they had, had. It was lovely to see them so excited to talk about their experiences.”

“The children had such a memorable experience which they will use to their advantage in the future. It was great to see them in action on the boat and even the weather helped out. The work done by you all is invaluable… long may it continue.”

“Thank you again for being there and doing such a fantastic job of looking after her. We are so grateful for everything you have done for her (and us!)”

“We had a fabulous time with our bereaved siblings’ group. Richard was wonderfully adaptive and enabled complete access for our disabled child with the animals, which she loved, and then switched into working with the older ones so naturally that his skill could easily be missed. Please thank him for us, all the children evaluated the pet care really positively.

Liam and Graham also worked amazingly with the children on the climbing wall, again accommodating the younger ones so that they all participated and felt a great sense of achievement and then challenging the older ones so that they too had a very special experience. Graham worked with a brother who has social communication issues, who was unsure of the climbing wall and somehow, with a gentle, quiet word, had him climbing to the top of both the wall and the big ladder which actually made me cry.

The housekeepers too were very sensitive to the nature of the group session we were involved with as they did their work and gave us the quiet space we needed, so please thank them.

Like last year, we used the woods and fields around Lineham to the fullest and had our picnic up in the stone shelter and campfire amongst the trees and watched the youngsters totally relax. The indoor space to eat, work and play together (this group, which had a wide age range, utilised the games room brilliantly) while managing to maintain the intimacy we need at times (we use the corner of the living room to have a candle ceremony to remember those we love) is just invaluable. I think the environment and slowing of time is such an important element of the weekend and a part of what enables the children to feel safe and secure enough to express what they need to.”

“What she has been able to experience and achieve has only been possible due to everyone working together. I couldn’t have done it without all your help. All the instructors were amazing, and I think it is very safe to say, collectively as a team we have made one girl and her family very happy.”

“I can’t begin to describe how perfect our week at Lineham Farm was! To say it was the first time 12 dancers had really met one another, half of them having autism and the other half with a learning disability, some with both, we couldn’t have asked for a better venue or hosts in Amanda and Emma.

Nothing was too much trouble; they were extremely accommodating which made the job for our staff a lot easier as we did not know the group at the start of the week, having only met them each twice in an audition environment.

My main role was to find a venue that could cater for any possible disability including physical (as we planned the trip before the auditions took place!) and Lineham Farm was the clear winner by a country mile. Amanda even sent photos of staff as requested to help our dancers familiarise themselves prior to the visit (pictures are extremely useful) and met with me on a number of occasions to support the planning as well as allowing some dancers to come and visit the farm in advance of their trip to ease nerves, it was a huge help for those that attended.

Staff we encountered on-site during our stay were considerate and kind to dancers they met during the week. Some of our dancers find new faces and people challenging but they were very sensitive, as were Amanda and Emma who got to know the group throughout the week and made real personal connections with each of them, taking time to learn their names and chat to them which made it all the more enjoyable for everyone.

I could write pages of thanks to both Amanda and Emma and anyone else who was involved in making our stay so fantastic!! We sincerely hope to return next year for another residential if we can, we absolutely loved every aspect of it.”

"The trips are invaluable and offer positive memories in the lives of children. With my role, I can often get caught up in the day to day protection of these vulnerable children, but your service offers them the chance of having fun and enjoyment within their lives.”

Child Abuse and Neglect Team Leader

“I would like to thank you on behalf of the five children that attended the weekend away at Lineham Farm in February. Once again, the trip was really well organised and offered vulnerable children a fabulous opportunity to get away and relax. I visited one of the children, the following week and he was still drawing pictures of the trip and described it as 100 out of 100 in terms of fun. He said he spoke to another child who had a social worker and had to move from living with their mum to their dad and it was the first time he knew someone like him. The chances these children have to mix, talk and share informally their lives which are often very different to that of their classroom peers is very valuable.

Your charity never turns any of our children away, no matter what their personal difficulties are, and in fact, work extra hard to ensure they have a good time. All the children we put forward have been involved with social care for many years and have backgrounds that include parental mental health issues and or substance misuse, and other issues relating to neglect, emotional and physical harm. Often, they are on the cusp of or in care proceedings, and all are subject to child protection plans.

One father who recently received his daughters into his care said he felt the children’s charity was excellent support for him as well as the children, saying he was never judged, and when he was struggling to provide a gift at Christmas for the girls, the charity was there. He went on to say becoming a full-time father for two girls for the first time was really hard and when the girls went to Lineham it gave him the chance to get on top of his jobs and when he picked the girls up and saw the smiles on their faces, he knew how much it meant”.

Read some stories

Read a selection of real-life scenarios of the children we support.

Read stories