Author Archive Sue Maidens

BySue Maidens

Healthwatch Recognition Awards 2024

Fusion were Healthwatch Recognition Award winner in the Empowered Communities category for our work on the Hypertension Heroes project.  On the evening of Wednesday 20th March 2024 Fusion’s hypertension heroes and our CEO attended the glittering awards ceremony at The Ashford International Hotel hosted by Healthwatch and EK360.  This was a truly magical evening and a real treat for everyone.  For more information on the awards please visit

What is the Hypertension Heroes Project?

Hypertension Heroes is an NHS initiative which allows members of the community to have their blood pressure taken by trained volunteers.  They will also be taught how to take and manage this themselves in their own home.  This alleviates the need to visit their GP surgery and also gives early warning signs of any conditions that may require medical intervention.  In essence, this project is a prevention step which could prove lifesaving.  If we look further afield, there is a cost saving to this NHS if health conditions are identified and treated early. 

Hypertension Heroes is also empowering to the community as it educates them to take ownership of part of their health care.  Delivered by fully trained volunteers and project coordinators, this is a true community initiative.

Fusion’s hypertension heroes deliver the project at our centre in Park Wood as well as outreach locations such as The Park Wood Larder and Morrisons on Sutton Road.

If you would like any further information on hypertension heroes, please contact 01622 691177 and speak to one of our friendly team or email

National Lottery Community Organisations Cost of Living Fund

BySue Maidens

A Warm & Hearty Park Wood Welcome this winter

In December 2023 Fusion successfully secured funding from the National Lottery Cost of Living Fund and launched our:

A Warm & Hearty Park Wood
Welcome this winter

project in early January 2024. 

This project was developed in response to our 2023 client survey where 61% of the local people surveyed said they were concerned about the cost-of-living crisis, food and fuel poverty. 

Based on figures collected from November 2022 to March 2023 demand for our different community services at Fusion is at its highest.  As part of the project development, and to address the concerns highlighted in the survey results Fusion implemented a combination of existing services and introduced some exciting new initiatives.

This funding allowed us to:

  • Provide a total of 2880 nutritious takeaway meals for vulnerable local residents
  • Register Fusion as a Warm Welcome Space
  • Offer free tea/coffee, free Wi-Fi and free access to public computers
  • Run two additional Slow Cookery Courses
  • Increase delivery of our Family Therapeutic/IAG service
  • Recruit a part-time outreach worker to engage with target groups in the local community who are most likely to be struggling with the cost of living crisis
  • Open longer hours and open for some weekend so support could be accessed 7 days a week

A total of 23 volunteers assisted in the mobilisation of this project dedicating 612 hours of their time.  We also recruited 2 session workers to assist with the preparation, cooking and distribution of the meals.  Fusion also formed a partnership with Hungry Hearts for the Homeless providing meals for their clients on a weekly basis. 


“My allergies mean that I can’t get cheap ready-made allergen meals, so having this option has been really helpful. I can’t make things like mash due to my disabilities so having a meal made for me was really nice, and not having to worry about my allergies as well made this so good. My daughter has been off ill from school, so if I hadn’t had these meals I would have really struggled to afford to feed us both as she normally receives free school meals.”

“I’ll go back to having a sandwich or microwave meal instead. I think the meals have been brilliant, I would definitely take part again.”

“I am housebound and have poor mobility. The meals have been a great help to me and my husband as he is my main career. They have taken the pressure off us.”

“I don’t know what I would have done without it, I definitely wouldn’t have been having hot food. My wife is ill so I have to cook for myself. It’s been really good.”

“It’s really easy to access, I’ve been skipping meals or eating really unhealthy food before this.”

“I would have had to purchase extra food and spend more money. This has made a big difference for my children and not having to use gas when cooking. It’s been brilliant, really has helped my family and helped with the living cost. Thank you all so much.”

66% of participants are struggling with the cost of living crisis.

45% of participants had gone without a meal before the project.

Because of the project 84% have not gone without a meal.

Sue Maidens CEO of Fusion said “I am immensely proud of the Fusion team for the delivery and coordination of this project.  To prepare, cook and serve 2880 meals to the community is just amazing.  All the staff became involved at some level and to receive such positive feedback makes all the hard work even more worthwhile.  Thank you to the National Lottery for making the delivery of this project to the Park Wood Community possible”.

National Lottery Community Organisations Cost of Living Fund

BySue Maidens

New Reception Desk at Fusion

No need to wander around Fusion looking for Reception.  Its now right at the Front as you walk in the main doors.  There you can find out about what is going on at Fusion today.  Want WiFi?  Get the Code from Reception. 

BySue Maidens

Fusion move their Public Computers

The computers available for public use at Fusion have been moved!  They have been relocated to a more private area and are no longer in the very public area of the Coffee Shop.  It was decided that due to the modern requirement to use the Internet to do almost anything from buying shopping to claiming a benefit moving the computers to a more secluded part of Fusion was needed.

BySue Maidens

Fusion Win TWO Maidstone Compassionate Community Awards

On Tuesday the 1st of November 2022 the Fusion team attended the Compassionate Community Award ceremony hosted by Maidstone Borough Council  and Heart of Kent Hospice . A lovely evening was had by all!

Fusion would like to say a massive thank you to all that nominated us in the 2022 Compassionate Community Awards.

We are delighted to announce that Fusion won the Compassionate Workplace/Business award, which we are incredibly humbled by BUT our amazing, beautiful, fantastic Chloe Hubbard won the Compassionate Young Person award too! So, we’re double winners! See if you can spot Chloe in the photo above.

This means the world to us. Fusion isn’t just a workplace, it’s a family. We’re lucky enough to have a fantastic community to work with, so most days it doesn’t feel like work!

Congratulations to all the other winners – thoroughly well deserved.

Again, we just want to say a big thank you to everyone who nominated us

Sue Maidens accepting the Compassionate Workplace/Business award

Sue Maidens CEO of Fusion accepts
the first award for
Compassionate Workplace/Business
from the Mayor of Maidstone,
Cllr Derek Mortimer.

Compassionate Young Person award

Chloe Hubbard of Fusion Maidstone accepts
the second award for
Compassionate Young Person 
from the Mayor of Maidstone,
Cllr Derek Mortimer.