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Free to Be Kids

Growing children's emotional health

This festive season, could you fund a child's time with Free to Be? We've set up our Christmas Wishlist to help us support even more vulnerable children than ever before in 2020.

You can make a donation as an individual, or donate a gift on behalf of somebody else. If you are making the donation as a gift, we'll send you a customisable gift letter (you can see an example here) to forward on to your friend or loved one, explaining what you have bought for them and how it will help to improve vulnerable children's lives.  

Jordan, aged 15


Young Leaders are young people who have reached our upper age limit, but have shown such exceptional leadership skills whilst with us, that we train them to return on projects as volunteers, where they bring new perspectives, fun and energy. Before returning as volunteers, all Young Leaders must pass a rigorous training weekend. Your support could cover the cost of accommodation, transport and training sessions to enable another Young Leader to join our team, building their skills and confidence, whilst providing inspiring role modelling to countless other children.


Not able to commit to a monthly donation?

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Please consider supporting our work with a standalone gift this Christmas:


A one off donation of £25 (plus Gift Aid) could pay for the ingredients or materials to allow 10 children to enjoy a morning of cooking, baking or getting creative with some arts and crafts activities. 


A one off donation of £50 (plus Gift Aid) could send 10 children and their volunteers swimming. Many children learn to swim on our projects and countless more love whizzing down the water slides!


A one off donation of £100 (plus Gift Aid) could pay for a present and souvenir photo collage for every child attending one of our Summer Gateway Residentials to ensure lasting memories of their trip.


Or click here to donate an amount of your choice.



"Free to Be has really changed my life. The attention I got from the adults was just unreal. I could actually trust someone outside my family and that was really helpful. Before, I wasn’t really an outgoing person, but it's weird because now I’m motivated to do things - it unlocked that door for me."

Sara, Aged 15

(Excluded from school age 13, now helping train our other Young Leaders)

All donations received through this campaign and via our Virgin Giving page are classed as unrestricted funds, meaning they can be used to support any aspect of Free to Be's work with vulnerable children. This helps your donation to be used to provide as much support possible.

Almost every penny you donate online is spent directly on provision for vulnerable children and young people. We have minimal paid staff and projects rely almost entirely on the dedication of our committed team of volunteers, who give up their time for free to work alongside our children. 

Free to Be's Christmas Wishlist

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Regular, recurring donations provide vital stability for Free to Be, allowing us to plan ahead and, importantly, make longer term commitments to the vulnerable children who need our support. Knowing that they have Free to Be projects and sessions to look forward to provides a vital lifeline during difficult times for many children.

"I take the experience that I get from Free to Be back home with me and I’ll think over the things that I’ve done and I’ll go through them in my head. It makes me feel very excited and happy and that I need to come again." Nathan, Age  11

£2.50 per month (plus Gift Aid), over a year, could fund a magical night out under the stars for a group of vulnerable children 


Your donation covers the cost of fire lighting equipment, ingredients for a delicious campfire feast, and the obligatory marshmallows to toast! Thanks to your support, the children could experience an unforgettable night with some of our volunteers at one of our woodland forest camps - making fires, telling ghost stories in the dusk and marvelling at how bright the stars are. Snug inside tents, hot chocolate and bedtime stories follow. Waking up in the morning feeling proud and adventurous, our survival heroes will return to base for hot showers and breakfast!


£7 per month (plus Gift Aid), over a year, could fund a month of London-based mentoring sessions for a child in need of ongoing support 


Help us to continue to support isolated children beyond their attendance on our residential projects. Our mentoring programme matches children in need of dedicated one-to-one time with warm, fun adult volunteers, who pick them up weekly or fortnightly from homes or schools to enjoy activities and time to chat. Mentoring pairs plan activities based on goals set together - your support could pay for 2-4 sessions over a month, which might include: hot chocolate in a cafe, a ride on the London Eye, football and ice cream in the park, a trip to the theatre or visiting a museum.


£25 per month (plus Gift Aid), over a year, could fund the full cost of a five day Residential Project for a child in desperate need of a break from home


Your support could cover the full cost of a child's break with us, including their transport to and from their door, healthy, nutritious food throughout their stay and the chance to take part in around 20 different activities, from night walks to farm visits, beach trips to cooking sessions. It allows us to support children to make friends and overcome challenges in small, family-style groups, each looked after by two or three warm, friendly adult volunteers, and to ensure that every child leaves the project with an award recognising their particular skills and qualities.  


£15 per month (plus Gift Aid), over a year, could fund the initial training costs for a thirteen year old with exceptional leadership skills to become a Young Leader 


£100 per month (plus Gift Aid), over a year, could fund the full cost of a young person taking part in our year long, intensive Journey Programme


The Journey Programme provides targeted support over a year for our most in need children. It supports young people for whom engagement with traditional support structures (like school, social services and mental health services) is currently limited/ineffective, but where involvement with our work has been deep and powerful. Your support could enable a young person to attend 4 Journey Projects, where they can take part in particularly challenging activities and receive intensive support to change their narratives about who they are and what they are capable of.


£10 per month (plus Gift Aid), over a year, could fund an afternoon of canoeing or horse riding for a minibus full of children. 

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88% of children attending a Free to Be residential in 2018 reported trying something with us that they previously hadn't thought possible. Our projects are filled with horizon broadening activities and opportunities, to support children to build confidence, feel successful and achieve more than they thought they could. Horse riding and canoeing sessions are things that the vast majority of children attending our trips have never had a chance to experience before. With your support, we'll ensure that even more children are able to achieve beyond their own expectations whilst they are with us.


Give a monthly recurring donation

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