The Green Island Holiday Trust has been providing a unique holiday experience for people living with a disability since 1991 when the charity was founded by Jo Davies.
Initially the holidays were held on Green Island in Poole Harbour, from where the Trust takes its name. Imagine the fun of heading off to a small island for a week’s holiday. Staying in a two-roomed A-frame house with limited facilities, all sorts of adventures were had whilst exploring the island and harbour.
When Green Island changed hands in 2005, the holidays were relocated to Holton Lee, a well-being centre set in 350 acres of tranquil countryside overlooking Poole Harbour. The groups stayed in accessible accommodation, firstly in a specially adapted converted barn and latterly in two adjoining cottages. Holton Lee provided the perfect base for a variety of activities and for trips out on St Elin, the Trust’s boat.
In 2020, for the first time in our history, our holidays had to be cancelled due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Inevitably, the pandemic impacted us in other ways too; we had to find an alternative base for our holidays and our boat, St Elin, had to be sold.
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We have a wonderful new venue for our holidays, Ellwood Cottages, nestled in the stunning Dorset countryside. The cottages provide the ideal base for us as we continue to create our holiday magic.
Over the years we have resisted calls to expand and offer more holidays as by remaining small and true to our origins, we are able to keep our personal touch and ensure that our holiday experiences are very special for all those involved.
As a registered charity, the Trust is governed by a board of trustees, who bring a wealth of diverse experience and skills to managing the charity.
An appointed coordinator is responsible for the day-to-day running of the Trust and the practical organisation of the holidays.
Everything else is done by our incredible team of volunteers!
My family owned Green Island in Poole Harbour in 1991 when I set up the Green Island Holiday Trust. Green Island was a magic place and we wanted to share the peace and quiet there.
Although the accommodation was very basic many very happy holidays were spent there with wonderful volunteers caring and having fun with holidaymakers. When latterly the island was sold the charity moved to new premises.
It gives me great pleasure that 30 years on the charity is still going strong.
I grew up in Poole in Dorset with views of Poole Harbour, so it is apt that I volunteered on my first Green Island Holiday Trust holiday in 2008. I have volunteered for holidays every year since then and became a Trustee in 2015, taking the role of Chair in 2018.
I previously joined Dorset Police in 1976, leaving when I had my two children in the mid-1980s. I have worked for Adult Services with Dorset Council since 1993, assessing the needs of adults with other abilities for their care and equipment needs. During that time, I have volunteered for several other charities including Rotary, the local MS group, Dementia Friendly Purbeck, Purbeck Careline and the Friends of Dorset Young Carers.
I qualified as a chartered accountant in 1986 and am a director of Carter and Coley Ltd. I am a Trustee and Treasurer to a number of local charities, including the Green Island Holiday Trust.
I’m married with two grown up children and an active member of the local Baptist Church. When not in the office, I can usually be found on the golf course – although I never claim to be proficient at the game!
I joined the Trust as its coordinator in 2014. I love the variety of the role and the challenge of bringing everything together for the holidays. I am privileged to work with an amazing team of volunteers, and it is immensely rewarding to see the joy on the faces of the holidaymakers as they share their time together.
My background in education and social care prepared me well for the role. Having spent 20 years working and volunteering overseas in educational and community settings, I returned to the UK in 2007. Settling back in Dorset, where I grew up, I began working in the social care sector, supporting people with learning disabilities.
I have lived in Poole for many years and am currently involved with roles locally in the Court Service and Mental Health.
I became a trustee in 2019 and feel very privileged to be involved with the Green Island Holiday Trust, working with trustees and volunteers to help the charity to continue to provide the holidays which have given enjoyment to people over many years.
I have been a GP for 35 years and am now semi-retired. I became a trustee several years ago, inspired by the wonderful founding members Jo Davies and Peter Viney.
I am constantly humbled and uplifted by the kindness, generosity and goodwill of all the amazing volunteers involved with the Trust and consider it an honour to be part of the charity.
I have been honoured to be involved with the Green Island Holiday Trust from the day it started.
Now as a Trustee it gives me an opportunity to work with my fellow trustee’s to make sure that we do our best to supply unique holidays for people who usually have difficulty in finding suitable facilities, and also to do our best to make sure that care and safety are our top priority.
I have a background in running business, being a magistrate, sitting on panels for people who are sectioned by the Mental Health Act. I have also been involved for many years with teaching less able people to water ski.
I am a retired GP having worked for 33 years locally in Bournemouth and Wimborne.
I joined the Green Island Holiday Trust in 2019 and have relished the opportunity to work with a wonderful team to provide such special holidays to some of our local disabled people.
I have spent the last 31 years working within the education sector – primarily overseeing the facilities, finances, and the human resources management at a number of independent schools.
I am married to Cheryl, who has been a volunteer for the Green Island Holiday Trust for the past 12 years. We have three children and two grandchildren. We live in Cowes on the Isle of Wight, where I work at a local special needs school.
My hobbies are playing guitar with my grandson followed by rugby and judo. Within the trust, I work closely with Wendy ensuring high standards of health, safety, and welfare for each holiday.