A DAY centre at the heart of Launceston’s community could be at risk of closing if it cannot raise £40,000 in the next two weeks.  

The Gateway Centre, Madford Lane, could be closed by the end of April unless urgent funding from within the community can be found.

The venue was set-up by Gateway Church to be a place where social needs such as isolation, loneliness and poor mental health could be met by welcoming everyone in and signposting them to the correct advisors and multi-agencies. Today the project is a thriving hub in which many individuals and community groups in the area make use of on a weekly basis. 

As part of the centre’s offering, there is a large community café which provides free hot meals and drinks to the homeless, sofa surfing and jobless. They also run various free community clubs within the centre such as Launceston Strollers, Pool Club, Creative Writing Group, Gardening Club, Knit n Natter, Menopause Caff, and Craft and Chat to name a few.  

With no other 'day centre' provision in the Launceston area, many adults and young people with neurodiversity and other disabilities attend the clubs, groups and cafe. This offers them choice, inclusivity and acceptance.

Rev Kevin Pickup, project lead for the Gateway Centre, said: “Until now, we have always relied on the users of the centre to help ensure that our bills have been paid and that we have been good stewards of our finances. Sadly, our fixed costs, such as energy bills are projected to go up by £70,000 this financial year.  

“As we look to extend the lease on the Gateway Centre with Cornwall Council, we have been unable to apply for much needed funding to help support the activities that take place within the project.  

“Once a new lease is signed, it is hoped that we will then be able to seek the necessary funding and continue to be a much-needed support to many in our community. For this to happen, we need to urgently raise £40,000 to help keep the project viable for the next six months while we sign a new lease and seek funding.  

“We have set ourselves a target of two weeks to attempt to raise this money, otherwise we will have no choice but to shut the Gateway Centre at the end of April. We know that this will be a huge loss to the community and the groups who currently use the project.” 

A crowdfunding page has been set-up to help raise funds for the appeal. More information can be found at www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/gateway-centre-launceston