A LONG standing Harwich nursery has been saved after securing its future into 2024.

The Ark Family Resource Centre, in Main Road, has thanked the community after fundraising efforts have helped secure its future.

In September, fears were raised for the future of the centre, which celebrated its 70th anniversary this year, as it faced financial difficulty and was in need of £20,000 to £25,000 per month to keep going.

Since then, fundraising events have taken place in a bid to ensure The Ark Family Resource Centre remains an essential part of the community.

On November 5, brave firewalkers took to the coals outside the Royal Oak in Dovercourt.

A total of 14 people faced the challenge, which was facilitated and organised by Jessin Hood.

Following two hours training, each of the participants walked the coals in turn.

The latest example is The Bottle Kiln hosting a quiz night fundraiser in aid of The Ark Family Resource Centre.

It seems the fundraising efforts have been going in the right direction, as The Ark Centre’s manager Claire Bridges told The Standard that enough money had been raised for the nursery to stay open and keep all umbrella services running into 2024.

She added: “We’ve now secured two grants and have done lots of community fundraising. 

“That alongside donations and fundraising events has raised £18,000 alongside two grants. 

“The nursery is now secure and that means we can extend our umbrella services - respite for children with additional needs, counseling, outreach services that go into the community and set up groups. 

“We are now also in a position where we could look to start a youth group in 2024. 

“Umbrella services are in a position where we can look to improve them, extend them and keep them going a lot longer. 

“We want to thank the ongoing support for Harwich and Dovercourt community. 

“We will still have to do fundraising but a lesser amount. We want to keep the awareness of the Ark going.

“It made us realise how special The Ark is - the reaction of people with the thought of it not being there was just overwhelming.”