Donate to Seagulls so we can spread some painty joy!


Seagulls paint giveaway during the festive month of December.

During the pandemic we were very aware that lots of people were going mad for painting their homes. We have always been aware that many people are unable to afford to paint their home. Paint is a luxury, but paint is vital to our mental wellbeing.

How we decorate our home has a profound and far-reaching effect on those who live there. The decoration and look of our homes play a major role in determining our mood. Living in a home where we have chosen the colour of the walls that surround us feels like a basic human right. We should never underestimate the mental health benefits of a freshly decorated room.

During lockdown we managed to secure funding from Natwest to give painting and decorating packs to people who needed them the most. The project was a huge success with continued demand long after the project came to an end. We gave away 85 packs through a referral scheme working with support organisations and charities.

The packs included £30 worth of decorating equipment including brushes, rollers, masking tape and sandpaper (to name but a few) and on average £70 worth of various paints. More often than not we offered a delivery service free of charge to reach these clients all over Leeds.

Below we have some feedback from the recipients about the paint packs and the difference it made to them:

  • Hi, I received a paint pack from yourselves through Women’s Health Matters. I want to first thank you all for helping me be able to make my flat more of a home. I haven’t completed each room yet but I’ve managed to do my bedroom, bathroom and living room and I’m super happy with what I received and all the equipment to help. I Highly recommend and appreciate seagulls.’
  • ‘I just wanted to send you the pics attached and to thank you for offering the paint referral scheme to our tenants. This tenant had just moved into a new property and was unable to afford to decorate it due to limited funds. The pack that you have provided has enabled him to decorate and really make his house a home. I know that he, along with the other tenants you have helped so far, are all extremely grateful for this service.’
  • ‘I just wanted to email to say a massive thank you for your kind donation of paint a couple of months ago! The paint went to a man who has previously been street homeless for several years and has found it quite difficult to settle into a tenancy in the past. He’s absolutely transformed his new flat and has made it his own with the help of your donation.’
  • ‘May I say thank you so much, the young lady I came with was absolutely buzzing and excited. It’s wonderful to see someone smile with so much enthusiasm. Many thanks to you for all the hard work you do, it’s fantastic!’

In October this year we had a paint give away through the same referral routes. We offered clients the choice of selecting the amount needed of four different colour ranges of emulsion and gloss. In total, we gave away 580 litres of paint with a retail value of £1,215. This giveaway was a gift from Seagulls to people in Leeds who needed it most. We got some humbling feedback that really showed what a difference the paint has made to families across the city.

  • ‘Wonderful!! I collected some paint for 3 women.

‘Jane’ – has 10 children 9 living at home, 4 under the age of 5.  She had been experiencing domestic abuse (coercive control) for 18 years and her abuser left the house in the summer. Jane really wanted to reclaim her space and redecorate the house so she and the children feel more at ease and at home in it. 

‘Sally’ recently moved out of refuge hostel (fled domestic abuse from Huddersfield) info council accommodation and needed to decorate it. 

‘Kelly’ is in court proceeding to have her children returned into her care and she wanted to redecorate the children’s bedrooms / house.

 Those are the ones I am aware of as I collected them, but I know that other women attended on their own for paint – unsure of their amounts

All of the women I support are victims/survivors of domestic abuse.

Thanks again to you and your amazing team!!’

  • ‘You helped one of my vulnerable clients who is in receipt of a low benefit income who has mental health, offending and alcohol dependency issues. The paint was used to help make his home feel more habitable and use his time to good effect and keep him occupied by decorating – which allowed him to work on the support he needs.’
  • Thanks again for the paint! It really helped one of my clients out who is in a sticky situation. She has previously been homeless and has recently gained her new tenancy which she is slowly settling into. She will use the paint to make her flat more homely and increase the chance of her settling into the tenancy and remaining there long-term. Her flat gives her a safe haven from abuse and sex work, and we hope she considers her new flat a safe place to stay permanently.’

This feedback has got us thinking and it is with stories like these in mind that we came up with the idea of our PAINT IT BACK Christmas appeal. Instead of sponsoring a goat (not that this isn’t extremely worthwhile) why not donate to Seagulls so we can give away more paint to those around the city who cannot afford to make their habitat a home. Donating to our PAINT IT BACK appeal means money to support Seagulls and paint to help those most in need.

Help us make a difference and DO GOOD with paint.

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