Mahdlo welcomes new patron

Date published: 18 March 2024

Mahdlo Youth Zone has welcomed a new patron to help it maintain and improve the services it provides for young people across the borough of Oldham.

The charity’s newest financial backer is Fix Auto Manchester East, experts in car body and collision repairs for all types of vehicles.

Fix Auto MD James Gore said: “Everyone at Fix Auto Manchester East is delighted and proud to become patrons of Mahdlo and help to support the fantastic work that they do with Oldham’s young people.

“My brothers and I grew up and went to school in Oldham, as do my kids, so it’s great to be able to give something back to the community and to help Oldham prosper.”

Mahdlo Youth Zone first opened in 2012 and is dedicated to young people from all over Oldham aged 8 to 19 years, and up to 25 for those with a disability.

Its mission is to provide opportunities for young people to be the very best they can be through a huge range of activities.

It employs 54 full and part-time staff and is supported by an additional 96 volunteers.

The youth zone is open seven days a week and provides an array of activities and services in support of young people, with more sessions spread across the whole borough.

Last year it raised more than £1.4 million to support its funding and is aiming for £1.6 million this year as it aspires to reach approximately 3,600 young people across the borough.

Lucy Lees, Mahdlo CEO, said: “My deepest gratitude to Fix Auto Manchester East for their generous support and commitment as a Silver Patron.

"Our partnership empowers us to make a meaningful difference in the lives of Oldham’s young people, fostering a brighter tomorrow for our community.”

Fix Auto Manchester East, a finalist in the Business of the Year (£1m-£5m) category at last year’s Oldham Business Awards, is an approved accident repair centre for a host of leading car brands, including Audi, Volkswagen, SEAT, ŠKODA, Volkswagen Commercial, CUPRA, Alfa Romeo, Citroen, Fiat, Kia, Peugeot and Vauxhall.

Mahdlo is currently in the midst of a fundraising campaign to support its ‘Give and Take’ initiative that is helping to fund the charity’s pledge to:

+ Provide free membership and entry fees to every session for all young people until the end of March 2024.

+ Provide free hot and nourishing meals seven days a week for as long as funding allows.

+ Give access to hot showers and washing facilities all year round.

+ Be a place where young people can receive the support and guidance they need and have the opportunities and experiences to give them the best start in life.

Michelle Gibbons, Mahdlo’s Corporate Partnerships and Engagement Fundraiser, said: “As the cost of living continues to impact on the nation, and with many families in Oldham feeling the pinch, support from the business community helps us to reduce some of the pressures our members and their families are experiencing.

“Almost 75% of Mahdlo members come from the most deprived areas of the borough, which is in the top 10% of the most deprived areas in the country, so every penny of the donations we receive is going to those who need it the most.”

Since September 2023, Mahdlo Youth Zone has hosted more than 12,600 visits, provided more than 5,300 free hot meals, experienced a 40% increase in attendance at Family Zone sessions, and delivered 80-plus hours of provision every week with 20-plus activities ranging from sports to the arts every session.

For more information about Mahdlo’s patron packages, please visit their website.

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