News and events

Launchpad picked as Association's Charity for 2014-15

At the beginning of July we chose Launchpad as our charity of the year.

Amanda Rose, Marketing Manager for Launchpad said,

"Launchpad Reading are over the moon to have been chosen as Reading Former Players Charity of the Year for 2014/15.

Launchpad help some of Reading’s most vulnerable and disadvantaged people turn their lives around. They began by running a soup kitchen 35 years ago and were known as Reading Single Homeless Project until 2011. Launchpad believe everyone in Reading should have a safe place to live that they can call home. And everyone deserves the chance to have a positive future, even if they’ve made the odd mistake along the way.

Launchpad can house 109 at any one time in properties around Reading and support a further 50 people including families in their own rented accommodation but need a little bit of help to stay on the right track. A safe clean home is the foundation of what we do and is complemented by working with a Launchpad Support Worker to help give much needed structure. And our Learning Centre activities provide tangible ways to help vulnerable Reading people move on in life and develop independent living skills including: job search, alcohol and substance misuse workshops, computer skills and cooking on a budget. Other important confidence building activities help engage and motivate include: our allotment, bike maintenance and art.

We don’t want our supported housing to be forever. And neither do Launchpad clients – they’re keen to make ends meet and live independently. But it’s a daunting journey, of which moving into Launchpad housing can be a crucial first step.

Homelessness rarely comes on its own and many Launchpad clients struggle with alcohol and/or substance misuse issues as do some high profile former footballers including Arsenal’s Kenny Sansom who in 2013 was found by police sleeping rough on a park bench – an example of how someone from a successful background can end up homeless and with issues with alcohol.

Lots of Launchpad staff, volunteers, supporters and clients are avid Reading FC and football fans and are very much looking forward to the year ahead with Reading Former Players Association."

For more information on Launchpad, please visit

11 August 2014

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