Backed by TV adventure star and ex-soldier Bear Grylls, the project aims to help mentally and physically wounded, injured or sick (WIS) ex-personnel to heal whilst also learning a new skill.
Healing scars through community
On his visit to TWBP, Bear Grylls said: ”It’s very moving to see close up the way simple.
“Not easy tasks like intricate bookbinding can be such a powerful therapy to those who have gone through such pain and heartache.
“These are tough Service personnel who have given their all for our country and I am so proud to be Patron to The Wiltshire Barn Project, providing a very real way of helping heal scars through community, friendship and pride in your work.”
Finding a way forward
Terry, a Serviceman who had to leave due to a back injury, has learned a new skill through his involvement in TWBP.
He is now making bespoke furniture and guitars in his own workshop as well as continuing with bookbinding. He was awarded the City & Guilds Level 1 & 2 qualification, receiving his certificate his certificate by HRH Princess Anne (pictured right).
“Doing this work is rewarding,” Terry said. “I get a feeling of self-worth by making the products. I feel safe and unstressed at the workshop.”
Helping the soldier and the family
Jonathan Powell, ex-Army officer and the brains behind TWBP, explained that last year the workshop saw 24 people come through the doors.
He is now offering courses to spouses and families of WIS personnel who might also benefit from this training.
Jonathan said: “Our objective here is to relieve sickness through therapy, training and qualifications. If you help the families you are also helping the Serviceman or woman in their recovery.”
The Wiltshire Barn Project is a self-financing social enterprise charity and each book that is sold helps pay for more training and materials.
Want to get involved? For more information, visit www.wiltshirebarn.co.uk