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M-AR Lends a Helping Hand to Children in Need in Hull

Offsite contractor, M-AR, has supported BBC’s Children in Need DIY SOS Big Build programme with a bespoke modular building for a youth charity in its home city of Hull.


During the week-long project a small army of local volunteers worked tirelessly to transform an empty 2.5 acre site into an outdoor sanctuary and adventure centre for Hull charity St Michael’s Youth Project. The charity’s aim is to support local disadvantaged children and young people aged between five and 24 years old, using the power of nature to help develop their physical, spiritual and mental wellbeing. The new outdoor facility will give users a safe place in their local area where they can get close to nature and escape the inner-city neighbourhoods where they live.

M-AR was quick to lend its support to the project, working closely with St Michael’s and enlisting the help of its supply chain to design, build, deliver and install the new modular facility for the site. With only around six weeks from the first conversations about the project to practical completion and the big reveal day, offsite construction proved an ideal solution for a quick and efficient turnaround. The delivery and installation of the new unit was co-ordinated by Lift & Locate, delivered to site by the specialist logistics team at Modular Movements and positioned in place with help from Graham Jones Cranes.

The single-storey building, which houses the toilets and showers as well a modern kitchen and small dining area, was finished with attractive wooden cladding to blend within the outdoor areas plus an overhanging roof to offer cover from the elements. The interior fit-out of the building, including installation of the toilets, was undertaken by another key member of M-AR’s supply chain, specialist building services company Dixon Group.

As well as the toilet and shower block provided by M-AR and its supply chain, the new outdoor space has been fully kitted out to provide a whole host of different adventurous activities – bringing the experience of a camping trip within reach for more children to enjoy. The centre has a large circular dual skill mountain bike course, bird watching tower, rope walk and adventure playground plus outdoor cooking facilities including a pizza oven and landscaped campfire.

Jo Lorenz from St Michael’s Youth Project said: “We were blown away by the generosity and kindness of everyone involved in helping us build our very own outdoor adventure centre – it’s exceeded even our wildest expectations! Particular thanks go to M-AR for providing the brand-new toilet and shower building, and working with us to make sure it met all our needs. The restrictions of weather and facilities have always been a huge barrier for us. With this amazing facility we can get more young people outdoors at any time of the year!

“Being under lockdown during the pandemic has had a huge impact on many of the young people we work with. Covid placed even more restrictions on children, young people and families in the local area, and this has not only affected them financially and physically, it has also affected their mental wellbeing too. This project has given us the facilities to provide a much-needed fun, yet safe, outdoor space right on our doorstep for our young people to enjoy – it’s going to make such a difference to them all.”

Ryan Geldard, operations director at M-AR added, “As a local business, it was an immediate and unanimous response from our team, who all wanted to get involved and do what we could to help. The new outdoor site gives St Michael’s Youth Project more scope to help even more of our local children and young people and I’m proud to have played a small part in making this project come to fruition and see first-hand the impact it will have here in Hull.”

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