The Rotary District 1040 Yorkshire Flood Appeal which raised in excess of £100,000 has just made a donation of £5000 to Seagulls, a Leeds based Social Enterprise, following a successful application made by the Rotary Club of Leeds

Seagulls was badly affected by the Boxing day floods when the River Aire burst its banks in the Kirkstall Valley in Leeds following 36 hours of  torrential rain  effecting many small businesses.  The main stock room and Mosaic workshop came under 1 metre of water and the paint store was under approximately 60cm of water.

Established in 2003, Seagulls was formed  to  protect the environment by saving unwanted/leftover paint from landfill, whilst offering tangible social benefits to the local community. Cheap, reused paint improves the houses of local people many of whom live in the disadvantaged inner city areas of Leeds and  their volunteer programme employs marginalised people; young people without a support network, those experiencing mental health issues, learning disabilities ex-offenders and the long term unemployed.

Alongside the paint store Seagulls runs a Community Arts workshop “ Mosaic” to undertake predominantly mural and mosaic projects with local schools and housing associations and to  provide twice weekly workshops for people suffering mental health problems.

Whilst there were many hands helping with the clean-up, enabling the enterprise  to reopen the store within a few weeks, the mosaic workshop and stock room had to be completely gutted .

Founding Director  Kate Moree said ” We are very grateful for the support we have received from the Rotary Club of Leeds who have recommended us for  this grant. It will now enable us to replace equipment lost and also to buy a second hand fork lift  truck which is required as we have had to relocate our paint store to a higher level to prevent any future flood damage”

President of the  Rotary Club of Leeds  Keith Harbage  said “Rotary are delighted to support such a worthwhile project which not only helps with environmental protection but assists the disadvantaged in so many ways within the city of Leeds “