About Us

The Hextol Foundation was founded in 2006. Our purpose is to offer working opportunities to people who find their post-school options limited. As a charitable company, we provide supported work placements to people with learning difficulties; mental health conditions, or both.

We are unique to the area - no other organisation offers the range of choice and flexibility that we do, without any charge to the beneficiary, and without imposing "joining criteria" such as asking for a diagnosis, upon the people who need our help.

Our 5 businesses are all real working environments, which allow beneficiaries to experience the challenges and rewards that only work can provide. Some people use us as a mental health recovery process, whilst others are looking for practical experience to spring-board them into paid employment. For others, we are a safe, non-demanding place where they can come to meet with colleagues and work on meaningful tasks, gaining a real sense of achievement at the end of the day. Our offer provides structure and support - and this allows us to empower our beneficiaries with the self-confidence and self-esteem to be able to reach their potential.

With no minimum or maximum duration on our placements, some of our beneficiary team have stayed with us for over 14 years!

The work placements - which are managed from our Hexham Head Office - help to address the issue of social isolation whilst introducing people to the world of work, sometimes for the first time and sometimes as part of a recovery process.

We are passionate about showing the outside world what our beneficiaries are capable of – and reducing the stigma which is sometimes attached to people with learning difficulties and mental health conditions.

It is important to us that our beneficiaries see the value of their excellent work. Each area of our business is available to hire and receives brilliant feedback.

We ensure that our beneficiaries receive this feedback and encourage them to continue in their roles with regular certificates and on the job training in our core skills.

All money generated from our beneficiaries’ work goes back into the charity, in order to maintain our services.

The experience gained can open up avenues to paid work or other voluntary positions, and we will help our beneficiaries work towards their goals.

Understanding the needs of our beneficiaries is key to The Hextol Foundation. Placements can last as long as required and it is possible to try more than one area of work.

As well as offering work placements, we also operate lunch clubs which are free of charge to our beneficiaries. These clubs are very popular and run daily Monday to Friday. Our catering beneficiaries help to prepare and serve a hot, nutritionally balanced meal.

All of this would not be possible without the help of our voluntary members of staff who help to keep things running in each business. We welcome new additions to our voluntary staff - an application form can be found here.

We work with organisations in the social care sector as well as schools, but we also take self referrals. If you would like to enquire for yourself or on behalf of someone about a supported work placement, please contact us.

Our management team is based in our Gilesgate office in Hexham, and we also have a Board of Trustees. The management team, lead by our Chief Executive Officer Bruce Howorth;  is responsible for overseeing the day to day running of the organisation. The Board of Trustees ensure we are meeting our charitable objectives.

Our Management Team

Bruce Howorth, Chief Executive Officer

Kath Miller, Fundraising & Business Development Manager

Claire Oakenfold, Catering Manager

Vacancy - Gardening Services Manager

Jo Elliott, Beneficiary Engagement Manager