£50,000 boost given to 22 local voluntary, community and social enterprise sector organisations

25 Jan 2019 Oliver.kelham

For the first time, Bristol Community Health and North Somerset Community Partnership (NSCP) have awarded grants of varying sizes to local projects which empower people to better look after their own health.

Bristol Community Health’s fund which was set up with support from Voscur received more than 60 excellent grant applications. The panel made up of Bristol Community Health Staff Council, awarded £32,783 in total to 12 projects. Matthew Areskog, Bristol Community Health’s People and Communities Service Manager, says: “We know how hard local community-based organisations work to make a difference. This programme has been created so extra support is given to help local people live healthier lives – whether it’s for an existing project, or to launch something new. Motivating and supporting people to look after their own health is key for us. Our amazing community health staff, who really know what’s needed in the community, have voted on the final shortlist. We’re excited to hear about the progress these brilliant projects make this year.”

One of the successful applicants awarded £2500 by Bristol Community Health was Acorns ‘n’ Oaks – an organisation that brings children and older people together through intergenerational social groups. Families currently visit 15 Nursing and Residential Homes, Extra-care Housing and Rehabilitation Centres across Bristol, making positive changes to the mood and behaviour of elderly residents, encouraging social development in the children and enthusiasm from the parents contributing to a sense of community in each care facility.

Founder and Director of Acorns ‘n’ Oaks, Gilly Wilson said: “We are delighted that Bristol Community Health recognises the enormous benefit that Acorns ‘n’ Oaks groups can have on the elderly, the children and the parents involved.  We currently have a waiting list of care homes and volunteers and so over the next six months this vital funding will be used towards employing an administrator, so that we can continue our existing groups, but also to start developing new groups. The money will also help us to contribute to research working with the UWE Department of Psychology to study the real benefits of intergenerational activities.” 

NSCP’s fund received more than 30 grant applications. The panel, made up of NSCP Staff council members plus staff from Quartet Community Foundation, selected to award £22,500 in total to ten projects.

Matt Croughan, Staff Council Chair, North Somerset Community Partnership, was involved in the decisions on the grant applications. He said: “We want to support groups like Wanted Not Wasted as it’s a very grassroots project actively sorting out problems on our doorstep by supporting children from areas of deprivation or who may have mental health problems. We’re a Community Interest Company and want to reinvest back into our community. This grant programme is about working with smaller organisations who help the community.”

One of the successful applicants awarded £1,000 by North Somerset Community Partnership was Wanted Not Wasted who are based on the Bourneville Estate in Weston super Mare. The grant will help young people get support to stop smoking. In January, Wanted Not Wasted will launch a new drop-in where the young people can get help to stop smoking, and can talk about drug and alcohol use. The funding will also pay for a monthly drop-in during school time for young people not attending school.

Helen Roy, WOW Coordinator for Wanted Not Wasted said: “We try to focus on young people in the immediate area, so Bournville, Coronation, Old Mixon, we take referrals from anywhere in the South Weston Ward. We get to know them and build up a relationship. For boys mentoring seems to be more popular than counselling. We’re seeing increasing levels of mental health issues such as trauma, which means the young people are struggling to stay in school. Some have serious family issues.”

A full list of organisations who have been awarded grants can be  downloaded here.

More grants available to Bristol, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire (BNSSG) good causes

Charitable causes across BNSSG can apply for various grants through Quartet Community Foundation. Please get in touch with Julie Newman, Philanthropy Officer at Quartet Community Foundation to find out more on Julie.newman@quartetcf.org.uk or visit https://quartetcf.org.uk/apply-for-a-grant/