A SWINDON retailer pledged to raise £20,000 for an organisation that provides therapeutic activities for people with PTSD and other mental health issues.

Flooring Superstore joined forces with the Woodland Warrior Programme, a not-for-profit woodland retreat that helps people cope with stress and mental health problems.

Set up by Royal Marine Commando Nick Goldsmith and his wife Louise, the programme initially aimed to support military veterans, but has been extended to aid key workers who worked on the front-line during the toughest part of the pandemic.

One of the first projects the Bridgemead Retail Park-based Flooring Superstore is supporting involves workshops for 200 key workers. The one-day workshops taking place between September and December involve activities like foraging, tracking, making fire and shelters, wild cooking and general wilderness living skills.

The retailer has been supporting the scheme throughout 2020 by asking customers to make donations which the company match-funds.

Managing director Dan Foskett said: “Each year, we ask our staff to choose a charity or organisation to support.

“This year we were struck by the number of organisations put forward who are working to help people with mental health issues and post-traumatic stress disorder.

“All were very deserving, but we choose the Woodland Warrior Programme because it is a smaller organisation which has a direct impact on so many people from different walks of life.

“We like the fact that through their activities they are helping to preserve precious woodland and we are excited about the big impact our support will have on this amazing project.”

Louise Goldsmith said: “Key workers

worked in stressful and difficult conditions, so as a way of saying thank you, we want to offer as many free places as we can to help key workers spend some much-needed time in nature.

“We are therefore delighted that Flooring Superstore have chosen to support us. The places they are sponsoring on the workshops will make such a positive difference to the mental health of those taking part.”