As a customer of Cytoplan, did you know you are making a positive change to thousands of lives now and in the future?
Charity is right at the heart of the day to day running of Cytoplan. Since conception in 1990, the philosophy of the company has been built on the foundations of helping others and improving people’s health and wellbeing. Cytoplan is wholly owned by the charitable trust, the AIM Foundation who have been supporting nutrition, health and well-being projects for 30 years.
The late Chair of Cytoplan was both a businessman and a philanthropist and so perhaps inevitable that amongst his many activities he helped turn around a struggling vitamin business and when it started to thrive he put his shares into the foundation. This means as Cytoplan customers, not only do have access to some of the best nutritional supplements on the market but with every purchase, you are contributing to social causes supported by the AIM Foundation.
As Cytoplan customers, you are part of this unique social enterprise, and we believe it’s our duty to regularly share the charitable activities of The AIM Foundation, as well as look at some of the organisations who we, as a company, have continued to support this year.
The AIM Foundation has recently launched a new website detailing the charitable endeavours that they are currently involved in. You can view the website here.
The AIM Foundation
The AIM Foundation is an endowed family grant-making charity whose overall goal is to support work to promote well-being. They help fund organisations that work to try to prevent social problems that the most vulnerable in our communities face today.
The Foundation is currently focused on the following strategic areas:
Nutrition for Health and Well-being –increasing the understanding of the importance of nutrition for health amongst health professionals.
Young People – Improving their life chance, particularly around the transition from school to employment and helping prevent mental health problems.
Early Years – Improving the emotional and social development of young children from vulnerable families
Over the last financial year grants (totalling £656,749) have been made to the following organisations:
Nutrition for health and wellbeing
All the charities supported in this strategic area are funded from profits from Cytoplan. In 2018/19 £200,000 was transferred to The AIM Foundation.
Following some scoping research, the following 5 small organisations were selected for funding. The groups came together for a positive round-table meeting in November and now The AIM Foundation is considering making further multi-year grants to continue the work of the individual organisations, as well as collaborative work, in 2020.
Institute of Health Visiting, who train and maintain standards of Health Visitors nationally, improved their nutritional advice given to families with young children. With their grant they updated their training materials and ran 4 training days of Nutrition Champions to become advocates and leaders in their organisations, cascading the learning to their colleagues. Further courses are planned as there is a waiting list of interest.
Nutritank is a small start-up run by medical students in Bristol. They campaign to increase and improve nutrition and lifestyle education in medical schools. Their impressive effort has resulted in hundreds of students and junior doctors joining their movement and they now have branches at 26 medical schools. The public awareness was increased by being featured on Jamie Oliver’s Channel 4 programme “Friday Night Feast” and from his continued support.
Culinary Medicine developed and ran a range of evidence-based courses “Using Food as Medicine” for medical students and qualified doctors. Their clinical nutrition and practical cooking skills training delivered last year included: 4 weekly speciality modules at Bristol Medical School; video workshops for GP’s; and compulsory day training for all 5th-year students at UCL Medical School.
NNEdPro, a think tank and research consortium linked with Cambridge University and publishers of the British Medical Journal on Nutrition, has undertaken a survey amongst UK doctors and medical students to establish the need and desire for nutrition education. They have run a couple of conferences for doctors and other health care professionals and a roadshow. They have developed e-learning resources and published a new textbook. In December policymakers are being engaged in the campaign to improve nutrition in NHS secondary care.
College of Medicine and Integrated Health were enabled to offer bursaries for GP’s in training at their Conference in October “Prescribing Food- Tomorrow’s Medicine”, which included looking at the relationship of food to major lifestyle conditions.
A new three-year programme of funding prevention interventions that address young prevent mental well-being and escalation of difficulties was established. Six proposals from medium-sized effective organisations were funded in May.
42nd Street was awarded a 6 months development grant of £10,000 to conduct an analysis of the national market and pilot some specific training for frontline professionals, who in turn will be better able to improve the mental health and life chances of the young people they work with. Since then a 3-year award has been made towards scaling nationally their course to develop the skills of artists working in creative ways to help vulnerable young people, and de-escalation approaches for professionals working with young people presenting in crisis
CALM was awarded £75,000 towards the year 1 costs of their 3 year RIO project, which will use technology to improve the response to webchat and helpline callers. While users wait for a helpline worker to be available, RIO will engage with chat users and assess their needs, determining the urgency and nature of their query to enable the right help to be given at the right time.
MAC-UK was awarded £73,824 over 3 years to co-design and co-deliver a public health and prevention strategy with young people with lived experience of the wider determinants of poor mental health. The proposed project will provide support for 12 young people, in order to facilitate them to influence the organisations that make decisions about young people’s lives to help channel resources towards co-produced initiatives.
Papyrus was awarded £69,840 over 3 years to deliver 30 training courses in suicide awareness and prevention per year in the West Midlands. These include shorter Suicide Awareness session for anyone who needs to deepen their understanding, an accredited half-day course for people who have pastoral care or responsibility for young people to enable them to identify and talk about suicide, and a two day, skills-building workshop that prepares caregivers to provide suicide first aid interventions.
Student Minds were awarded £24,990 over 12 months to pilot peer support groups across 10 universities. Student Minds will develop and implement this new national peer support programme for first-year students, focusing on well-being, self-care and resilience building, and supporting them with the transition from school/college to university.
Youthscape was awarded £75,000 towards the costs of delivering the Alumina programme over three years. The Alumina programme is a live online service for young people aged 14-19 seeking help about self-harming. It helps young people reduce or stop harming by giving them tried and tested strategies for coping with their emotions in other ways. It helps them see what triggers their harming and learn how to avoid or deal with them.
Impetus works with their charity partners to develop effective approaches to get disadvantaged and under-achieving poorer young people the support that they need to succeed. AIM has contributed to this organisation for many years and now focusses its financial support towards research to try to influence government policy and decision-makers to address this difficult transition some young people have from leaving school and going into employment.
Young Minds is the UK’s leading charity championing the well-being and mental health of children and young people. The AIM Foundation continued its commitment of £24,000pa to support the policy influencing work. They have contributed to the guidance around the Mental Health Act review, campaigned to Act Early in addressing the factors that make young people’s mental health worse, advised on the transformation of CAMHS, and influenced the regulations to help children and young people navigate the online world in a way that positively affects their mental health and wellbeing.
CYPMHC received an annual contribution of £5000 towards their collaboration work of policy campaigns for Young People’s mental health.
The Children’s Society continued to receive the final grant at £40,000 towards the Community Hidden Harm Awareness Team in East Anglia. This project improves the physical and emotional wellbeing of children and young people whose parents are misusing substances and are victims of abuse and neglect, resulting in underachievement at school.
Action for Happiness is a small organisation who are working to reduce the number of people suffering from mental health problems and increase the number of people feeling good, functioning well and helping others.
As well as our commitment of £15,000 towards the communication strategy, an additional one-off grant was made towards updating their website.
The Wave Trust try to reduce the damaging, inter-generational family cycles of childhood neglect and abuse. The AIM Foundation continues to support their social policy and campaign work to address Adverse Childhood Experiences.
Association of Infant Mental Health were awarded a new commitment of £55,000 over two years. This will enable AIMH to develop the Infant Mental Competencies Framework and Recognition Register. The objective is to up-skill practitioners working with at-risk pregnant women and parents and their infants to strengthen their attachment and therefore improve their emotional and social development.
Best Beginnings work to inform and empower parents through their evidence-based accredited Baby Buddy app, to maximise their children’s long-term development and wellbeing. A new commitment of £75,000 over three years has been made by AIM towards their Parent Leaders project reaching vulnerable and at-risk parents in Newham and Birmingham. The project will support grass-root organisations to use digital innovation in their on-going work with new parents. This aims to create opportunities for seldom heard voices of marginalised women to influence local, regional and national policy and practice.
Institute of Health Visiting was awarded a further 2-year grant of £80,000 was made towards maintaining and extending the regional forums of Perinatal Mental Health Champions to help disseminate best practice and research around helping families needing support in their mental well-being around the time of birth.
Cued Speech is a small charity that helps deaf babies learn to communicate through making the spoken language more visual. Our second-year grant of £22,000 per year was made towards the core costs to increase their capacity.
Parent’s First received its third year’s contribution of £25,000 to their work in deprived areas of Essex training ‘community parent’ volunteers. These volunteers then provide peer-support to vulnerable mothers of infants.
A big Thank You
Every customer who purchases our products, whether it be once, twice or ten times a year, is helping us to try and help those who are much less fortunate than ourselves. We believe this is a sound business model: one that we are proud of and one that hopefully, in time, will achieve a goal we have set ourselves, to help improve the health of the nation. Our charitable work – both on a small and large scale – is testament to this.
We hope that this information has given you a small insight into the charitable structure of Cytoplan and the significant role it plays in the day to day running of the company. We hope you can continue to support us in the future.
If you have any questions regarding the topics that have been raised, or any other health matters, please do contact me (Amanda) by phone or email at any time.
firstname.lastname@example.org, 01684 310099
Amanda Williams and the Cytoplan Editorial Team