Sunderland store supports St Michael's Community Centre’s DIY Day with generous donation

A Hendon painting and decorating store has donated more than £200 worth of paint and materials to help decorate a community centre ready for reopening next month.

Friday, 10th September 2021, 3:39 pm

Johnstone's Decorating Centre in Hendon provided St Michael’s Community Centre with overalls, brushes and nine tins of fence, masonry and metal paint to support their DIY Day this Saturday.

Formerly known as Grangetown Community Centre, the facility had been a focal point for local people before having to close at the onset of the Covid pandemic.

After collecting the generous donation, community centre secretary Sue Ferguson, 55, said: “It’s a brilliant gesture and a fantastic donation as without it we would have had to pay for this. We now have all we need to decorate the outside of the centre.

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Johnstone's Decorating Centre manager John Dingwall (left) alongside St Michael's Community Centre secretary Sue Ferguson and Cllr Michael Dixon holding some of the tins of donated paint.

"Before Covid the centre was really well used by people of all ages and we are looking forward to getting everyone back.”

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Following a story in the Echo about the centre’s DIY Day, Sue said they were inundated with offers of help.

She added: “A lot of people have come forward and volunteered, including the Police Cadets and a number of Council workers.”

Johnstone's Decorating Centre manager, John Dingwall, filling the paint tins to be donated to St Michael's Community Centre for their DIY Day..

Ward councillor and member of the community centre’s Management Committee, Michael Dixon, added: “It’s great to receive support from Johnstone's Decorating Centre. We are very grateful for their valued and kind contribution to help get our community centre ready for re-opening, so we can resume supporting our local residents, both young and older.”

After finding out about the centre’s DIY Day, store manager John Dingwall was keen to help out.

John, 63, said: “We just thought it would be good to help out with a local project. It’s nice to be able to support the community.”

After 18 months laying dormant, the centre needs cleaned, repaired and redecorated which is why the new management committee launched the DIY Day appeal.

One organisation looking forward to returning to use the facility is Blue Watch Youth Centre who provide youth work, mental health support and a range of activities for the ward’s youngsters.

Blue Watch Project Manager, Steve Rylance, said: “This is a fantastic gesture and really helps us. We need as many buildings across the city as possible to provide space for young people.”

Anyone who can help is urged to contact the centre on [email protected]

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