Taking steps to support life changing project


Derwen College students are urging the local community to sign up for the College’s annual Sponsored Walk and Fun Run to raise vital funds to help develop their independence skills.

Students at the further education college for young people with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) are hoping that record numbers of walkers and runners will sign up for the fun, family 10km event which takes place on Sunday, 5th April.

This is the Gobowen College’s 53rd annual event. The 2020 Walk and Run is expected to attract more participants than ever before, with many people opting to take part wearing fancy dress.

Money collected through generous sponsors and donations will go towards Derwen College Charity, including towards the Agnes Hunt Village Project - providing students with purpose-built accommodation which will promote their independent living skills

The Agnes Hunt Village Project is a refurbishment of the original Agnes Hunt Village, in Gobowen – a complex of bungalows which were built to provide independent living to people with disabilities. The bungalows, built in the 1950s, are being modernised to accommodate today’s students with SEND. The long-term fundraising target is £1million, with hopes that the Sponsored Walk and Fun Run will help to raise a substantial part of that.

Students who are already living in the College’s Agnes Hunt Village have been keen to explain what a difference living in the bungalows has meant to them. Providing them with opportunities to develop their independence and life skills.

Libby said: “I have been at Derwen College for three years and was really excited to move into a bungalow last September. I am learning how to do my own washing up, washing my clothes, and keeping my home clean and tidy for when I move into my own house when I am older.”

Faye said: “I am in my final year at Derwen College and have been in the bungalows for over a year. I like learning to live by myself. I do lots of cooking – I make chicken curry, normal and spicy. With a bit of support from staff, I can make the rice too. I have also been learning to take my own medication with staff support, to eventually do this on my own. When I leave college, I can take care of myself. I will be leaving next year and am going into supported living in Shropshire. I will also be working in a Premier Inn, all because of what I have learnt at Derwen College.

Sam said: “I like living in the bungalows, and I really like learning to prepare my own meals; but I would like a bit more work space in the kitchen for when we prepare meals. It can be a bit too cramped.  I invite my friends over to chill out and play on the X-Box, talk, have hot drinks and listen to music.”

Read more about the Agnes Hunt Village Project at www.agneshuntappeal.co.uk. For more information and to register for this year’s Sponsored Walk and Fun Run, go to https://www.derwen.ac.uk/event/sponsored-walk/

  • Published on 6th March 2020