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DIY SOS Children in Need Special comes to Swansea

DIY SOS towering Blackpool challenge

The BBC One show will feature a Swansea-based charity, supported by BBC Children in Need, which offers help to children and young people in care or leaving care.

DIY SOS, BBC One’s popular building show will descend on Swansea to take on one of its biggest challenges to date. DIY SOS: The Big Build BBC Children in Need Special (working title) will see Nick Knowles and his team demolish a dilapidated building which is the home of a local charity, The Roots Foundation Wales which offers support to children and young people in care or leaving care, before re-building a modern support centre and transitional housing in its place. The show will air this November during BBC Children in Need Appeal week.

The Roots Foundation Wales, established in August 2011, is an inspiring charity which offers support to children and young people in care or leaving care, those in kinship care and their carers based in Swansea and South Wales. The Foundation’s current building is run-down and gradually falling into disrepair, so the infamous Purple Shirts have grand plans to knock it down, before starting work on a new building in its place in September. The DIY SOS team along with the support of hundreds of volunteers and tradespeople will have eleven days to build a brand new purpose-built support centre with short term accommodation for young people leaving the care system.

Nick Knowles, presenter of BBC One’s DIY SOS, said: “The team and I are delighted to be coming to Wales once again where we’ve always had amazing support. This is going to be one of our biggest builds so we are going to need the community to come out in force. It couldn’t be for a more important issue: to support children and young people who are in care and leaving care. We can’t wait to tell their stories and build a wonderful new facility and housing, so that The Roots Foundation Wales can keep helping to support these children and young people.”

“We know this is an ambitious build but with lots of help from the people of Swansea, Wales and beyond, together, with a few laughs along the way, we’ll be able to achieve something truly special. Please get involved”

We are delighted DIY SOS: The Big Build BBC Children in Need Special are coming to help us. The work we do here at The Roots Foundation Wales makes such a difference to local children and young people in care and leaving care but our current facility, The Hut, was falling into disrepair.

Emma Lewis, Chairperson at The Roots Foundation Wales

“The upcoming show will give the children and young people we work with a voice to share their experiences and a brand new facility to be proud of and make their own. We can’t contain our excitement.”

Rob Stewart, Leader of Swansea Council, added: “We’re delighted to be involved in supporting such an important project. For Nick and the team this will be a very ambitious DIY SOS Big Build. We are very pleased to be providing a range of back-up support services and links to our local suppliers and contractors so the DIY SOS: The Big Build team can get in and do their job as quickly and effectively as possible.”

“The Roots Foundation Wales do great work supporting young people, and their enthusiasm and commitment in this area of work is commendable. There is a strong community spirit in Swansea and a growing ‘can-do’ attitude so I’m sure the generosity of local businesses and tradespeople will see many lending a hand when the DIY SOS: The Big Build BBC Children in Need Special goes ahead.”

The Roots Foundation Wales has been allocated over £139,500 in BBC Children in Need funding since 2014 to provide the C.A.R.E (Children at Risk of Exploitation) Project, offering support to children and young people in care who are at risk of exploitation with the aim of reducing any risk-taking behaviour whilst helping to raise their confidence, and increase their skills. BBC Children in Need now funds 15 projects in Swansea with over £1million hard at work to benefit young lives in the region.

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