Essex Freemasons add to “Chaos with Fun” with support for ADHD

Hornchurch based charity ADDUP gets £15,000 to help those coping with effects of attention deficit disorder.

With a donation of £15,000 over three years the Masonic Charitable Foundation and Essex Freemasons are adding to the “Chaos” at ADDUP (Attention Deficit Disorder: Uniting Parents) in Hornchurch. 

ADDUP supports children and young people with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), co-morbidities, and those presenting with challenging behaviours, by providing projects that enhance their creative skills thus building confidence and self-esteem. They teach them about their ADHD to help them understand how it impacts on their everyday lives as they learn skills to manage it, make good choices and achieve in their education to lead successful lives. This brings children together in a safe environment with staff and volunteers who understand and can meet their needs, in a place where they can be open and honest about their ADHD without being judged or sent away.

ADDUP has been going since 1997 when it was set up by Sheila Keeling in response to the need for help and assistance for families with children suffering from ADHD. It has grown to be a key element in the management of ADHD both in Essex and around the country. The projects, clubs and teams that form the basis of ADDUP in Hornchurch have been spread far and wide as examples of good practice.

“Over the last 25 plus years not only have children developed from these programmes but a number of them have returned or stayed to help the next generation to cope and manage, it is really a family environment,” said Sheila. “This positive feedback and involvement from those who have already been through the programmes is vital for those just starting. It allows peer groups to develop and encourages participation, thereby enhancing support and assistance. It also allows the “Chaos” to develop, from which the “Fun” develops and the programmes to deliver”.

ADDUP needs around £150,000 per year to run their programmes and clubs in Hornchurch as they stand today. However, there are always more calls on them than their resources can currently serve, thereby creating a waiting list. Which Sheila and her team would like to reduce.

“This donation of £5,000 per year for the next three years will allow ADDUP to carry on with their “Chaos with Fun” particularly at their annual Fete”, said Chris Hicks Provincial Charity Steward of Essex, “and is in line with Essex Freemasonry’s key values of Charity, Integrity, Respect and Friendship”.


L-R: Lyndsay Marsh (Centre Manager), Sheila Keeling (Chief Executive), Chris Hicks (Essex Provincial Charity Steward), Mike Barrett (Group Charity Steward)