We're a local voluntary group that creates life-changing opportunities for vulnerable people
Sliding Doors exists to create a community that is ‘open for all.’ We provide meaningful social activities and volunteering opportunities for vulnerable people – primarily those living with a disability (physical or learning) and those who are lonley and isolated. We offer a varied program of events designed to foster connections between isolated people, improve their physical and mental wellbeing and create a sense of purpose and community. These include daily Social Sessions at our purpose built ‘Sliding Doors Hub’ (in a local community building social sessions, art & craft group, music, bingo, monthly cabaret evening and games afternoons, and our flagship party night at Blackburn Rovers ‘Blues Bar’. These activities provide a safe and friendly environment for people to participate, enjoy an affordable meal or simply relax and meet new people. We provide lunches/refreshments at minimal cost and activities at evening and weekends- times when people feel most lonely. We also run regular trips for people who (due to limited mobility, poverty or fear) are otherwise unable to travel. Destinations are chosen by the service users and all activities are supported by volunteers, many of whom who are themselves service users with additional needs.
MEET JULIE ASTLEY, FOUNDER OF SLIDING DOORS
"Having worked in the community sector for 30 years, I was growing increasingly frustrated by the lack of inclusive activities for people with disabilities and those who feel lonley & isolated
There were specialist groups for people with autism and groups for people with vision impairment and groups for people in wheelchairs.
Yet everywhere appeared to define their users by their disability or age and activities were pre-planned from an office, somewhere far removed from the actual service users.
No wonder so many people with disabilities feel disempowered and isolated.
So I decided to shake things up!
In November 2012 Sliding Doors was born - the loving creation of myself and 6 outstanding people (each with their own unique disability).
“When people realise that they’re not defined by their disability, something magical happens. A spark emerges from deep inside and (perhaps for the first time ever) they can be themselves.
And that spark doesn’t go out when the music ends. Its stays with people, it connects them to other people and it quite literally transforms their entire lives”
What you’ll find at a Sliding Doors event is a room full of joyful, confident and courageous people.
Slidining Doors Hub New Chapel Street Blackbur BB2 4DT
Thursday nights: 6.30-8.30pm
Visit our new Sliding Doors Hub
Mill Hill Community Centre
New Chapel Street