Bassetlaw Action Centre, which promotes the independence of older and vulnerable people has been awarded £150,000 from one of the UK’s largest charitable funders. The funding will enable the charity to purchase a building. The Garfield Weston Foundation says small community charities are rising to the challenge of facing unprecedented demand for their services by being proactive and innovative.
The Foundation has more then doubled its £5m capital fund to over £11m, so it can support over 150 charities and community organisations across the UK.
The Weston Anniversary Fund was launched earlier this year to provide funding to charities to improve their existing facilities or provide new ones as part of the Foundation’s 60th year. The trustees took the decision to more than double the fund after receiving over 2,300 applications, with over 60% from charities that have never applied to them before.
Lynn Tupling, Chief Executive of Bassetlaw Action Centre says: “We welcome this Garfield Weston funding, as it will enable us to purchase a building to operate our valuable services for many years to come. Grant funding is becoming rare these days and the savings made on our annual rent expenditure can now be used to provide the many charitable services that we offer.”
Penny B, who is supported by the charity says: “The volunteers from the Action Centre have been a lifeline to me. I have used the drivers to take me shopping since my husband died and I use their home support service to give me a bit of extra help with things I can no longer do. I think it is marvellous that they have been recognised for all the help they give to all of us.”
The Garfield Weston Foundation’s Director, Philippa Charles, says: “What really impressed our trustees is the amount of volunteering and community involvement that’s going on across the UK. We heard about so many amazing projects involving local people who are helping their communities thrive — regardless of cuts, Brexit debates and other challenges.
The response from charities to this new fund clearly demonstrates the voluntary sector is proactive and energetic; far from the complacency it is sometimes accused of. Yet we can also see the level of need that exists in our local communities and how much the services charities provide are so desperately needed. The impact of these grants will be significant, with benefits for many people lasting years.”
The Bassetlaw Action Centre provides a range of sources of practical help, advice and information to older people, vulnerable people and people with long term health conditions. This includes a community transport project, a stroke/neuro support service, a housing advice service, home support, befriending, support to self-help groups and self-management courses for people with long term conditions. The organisation utilises the services of around 80 volunteers and its reach is throughout Bassetlaw. In addition to the essential services the organisation delivers, clients receive a holistic service through established partner referral routes (using the North Notts Support Partnership). The building is open to the public daily and hosts IT and basic skills training, meeting rooms and office space.
If you want to give something back in your local community and have a small amount of time to give, contact the Bassetlaw Action Centre and make a difference locally by offering essential support to someone who needs a bit of help or who are lonely or isolated and just in need of a friendly face to have a chat with.