Covid-19 Community-Led Organisations Recovery Scheme

Thursday, 16 July, 2020

The £9.5 million Covid-19 Community-Led Organisations Recovery Scheme is being delivered by Power to Change, Locality, The Ubele Initiative and Social Investment Business on behalf of the National Lottery Community Fund. Find out about the Lottery’s other schemes.

What is the Covid-19 Community-Led Organisations Recovery Scheme?
Covid-19 Community-Led Organisations Recovery Scheme offers grants up to £100,000 to community organisations in England who are facing financial difficulties caused by Covid-19. The scheme is aimed at organisations delivering services in their local community to support people who are at high risk from Covid-19, with an emphasis on Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME)-led or BAME-supporting businesses.

Is it open for applications?
The recovery scheme will open on Tuesday 28 July for applications from 10am till 1pm. And then for a further two rounds on Tuesday 4 August from 10am till 1pm and Tuesday 11 August from 10am till 1pm.

Who can apply?
Community organisations in England who are facing financial difficulties caused by Covid-19. For more information about whether your community organisation will be eligible, please read the guidance notes.

What can you apply for?
Up to £100,000 grant and business support to:

  • help people and communities experiencing disproportionate challenge and difficulty as a result of the COVID-19 crisis
  • provide services and support for vulnerable people, for which there will be increased demand as a result of the COVID-19 crisis.

Where can I find out more?
You can find out more by reading the guidance notes and our Frequently Asked Questions.

Join us for a free webinar on Thursday 23 July from 3.30-5 pm where you will be able to find out more about the fund and application process and take part in a live Q&A.

Do you have questions about your application?
If you have any questions about your application you can get in touch with our delivery partner Social Investment Business: cclors[at]sibgroup.org[dot]uk

BVSC seeks voluntary sector views on the impact of COVID19

Tuesday, 14 July, 2020

The COVID-19 pandemic has seen exceptional upheaval and loss across the world; changing the way that people live, work and socialise.

We know that in Birmingham, and indeed across the UK, the voluntary, community, faith and social enterprise (VCFSE) sectors have been key partners in leading the local, regional and national response to the pandemic, responding to the existing and emerging needs of our most vulnerable citizens.

At BVSC we want to understand how the sector in Birmingham has responded, but importantly we need to also understand what the short and long term implications are for the sector's future in a post-COVID recovery landscape. So we have launched our latest State of the Sector survey, and we need your input!

This survey seeks to provide data that will enable us to understand what is happening across Birmingham’s VCFSE sector and share, at a strategic city-wide level:

  •   The way in which services have responded and adapted as a result of Covid19 to meet the needs of service users;
  •   The immediate impact of Covid19 on the VCFSE sector in terms of income, staffing levels and volunteers;
  •   The current capacity of the sector in the wake of Covid19;
  •   The anticipated longer-term impacts of Covid19 in relation to capacity, service delivery and longer-term sustainability;
  •   The anticipated support needs of the sector as we move into recovery and beyond.

The information gathered will be fed back to all participants and to policymakers at city, regional and national level, and will be used to frame BVSC's sector support offer in the months ahead.

To complete the survey, click here.

 

The Mind West Midlands Physical Activity Network

Friday, 26 June, 2020Sport Birmingham have partnered with the much loved and respected national charity Mind, to raise awareness, tackle mental health stigmas and support people with mental health problems to become more active. Led by Sport Birmingham...

The Mind West Midlands Physical Activity Network

Friday, 26 June, 2020Sport Birmingham have partnered with the much loved and respected national charity Mind, to raise awareness, tackle mental health stigmas and support people with mental health problems to become more active. Led by Sport Birmingham...

BCM Grant Funding Update for Voluntary and Community organisations

Friday, 26 June, 2020

About this Event

This is the second in our series of webinar sessions aimed at voluntary community groups and organisations based in Birmingham.

This informal session by Birmingham Community Matters with fundraising expert John Ellery from Get Grants will give you:

  • an update on the current funding environment
  • information about the support available for organisations
  • an opportunity to ask a fundraising expert questions relevant to your project or organisation.

We would love it if you could join us. Please do book your space if you're planning to join us – and get yourself comfy with a cup of tea and biscuits in advance (or doughnuts if you prefer!).

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We're sorry but this session is not recommended for social enterprises such as CIC's but we can suggest sources of help if you get in touch by email at our address below.

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We will be using Zoom to run this webinar. It's simple to use from your browser or your smartphone and we will send you a link to access the webinar and a password.

As there are likely to be a few people on the webinar, your microphone and video will not automatically be enabled, but we will give you the opportunity to contribute during the session. You are welcome to add questions and comments using the chat function, but you are equally welcome to just listen in without taking part (we hope you do though!)

If this is your first time attending a webinar and you are unsure of what to expect or how to access the webinar please don't worry, get in touch with us at info[at]birminghamcommunitymatters.org[dot]uk, we are here to help you.

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Click here to register.

After registering for the event you find that you cannot attend it's not a problem, simply email us at info[at]birminghamcommunitymatters.org[dot]uk. This will allow us to allocate your place to someone else.

BCM Grant Funding Update for Voluntary and Community organisations

Friday, 26 June, 2020

About this Event

This is the second in our series of webinar sessions aimed at voluntary community groups and organisations based in Birmingham.

This informal session by Birmingham Community Matters with fundraising expert John Ellery from Get Grants will give you:

  • an update on the current funding environment
  • information about the support available for organisations
  • an opportunity to ask a fundraising expert questions relevant to your project or organisation.

We would love it if you could join us. Please do book your space if you're planning to join us – and get yourself comfy with a cup of tea and biscuits in advance (or doughnuts if you prefer!).

--------------------------------

We're sorry but this session is not recommended for social enterprises such as CIC's but we can suggest sources of help if you get in touch by email at our address below.

--------------------------------

We will be using Zoom to run this webinar. It's simple to use from your browser or your smartphone and we will send you a link to access the webinar and a password.

As there are likely to be a few people on the webinar, your microphone and video will not automatically be enabled, but we will give you the opportunity to contribute during the session. You are welcome to add questions and comments using the chat function, but you are equally welcome to just listen in without taking part (we hope you do though!)

If this is your first time attending a webinar and you are unsure of what to expect or how to access the webinar please don't worry, get in touch with us at info[at]birminghamcommunitymatters.org[dot]uk, we are here to help you.

--------------------------------

Click here to register.

After registering for the event you find that you cannot attend it's not a problem, simply email us at info[at]birminghamcommunitymatters.org[dot]uk. This will allow us to allocate your place to someone else.

Co-op Funeralcare Hardship Fund

Thursday, 25 June, 2020

What is the Co-op Funeralcare Hardship Fund?

The Co-op Funeralcare Hardship Fund is a pot of money that we have set aside to support the families who are experiencing financial hardship and whose families may struggle to pay for their loved one’s funeral costs.

What should I do if I’m worried about funeral costs?

We understand that the COVID-19 crisis is putting many families under financial

pressure, but if you don’t feel comfortable with your funeral costs at any time during the arrangement – just let us know. We’ll do everything we can to help.

If your loved one has died of coronavirus, you could qualify for support from the Co-op Funeralcare Hardship Fund.

What is the Co-op Funeralcare Hardship Fund?

The Co-op Funeralcare Hardship Fund is a pot of money that we have set aside to help those who have lost loved ones due to coronavirus. Supporting families who are experiencing financial hardship and who may struggle to pay for their loved one’s funeral costs.

Who can apply for support?

You can apply for assistance if all of the following criteria applies to you*:

  • Your loved one died as a result of coronavirus or a coronavirus-related illness
  • You are responsible for paying for the funeral and are experiencing financial hardship, have an income of less than £25,000 or are in receipt of benefits.

How do I apply?

We’ve made applying for support from the Hardship Fund as simple as possible. All you have to do is visit https://hardshipfund.coop.co.uk/ and fill in your details providing the information required.

What support will I receive?

If you qualify for support from the Hardship Fund, we’ll contribute £250 towards the cost of the funeral. You should hear if your application has been successful within

2 working days of applying,  providing you’ve supplied the relevant documentation.

The government also provide support for funeral costs and there are a number of options available, which may help you.

If you’d like to make a claim for government support, we can advise you how to do this and you can still apply to the Co-op Funeralcare Hardship Fund too.

Volunteers praised for food parcels supporting the vulnerable

Thursday, 28 May, 2020

A coordinated effort to support Erdington’s elderly and vulnerable during the Coronavirus pandemic saw food parcels delivered to 259 homes in one day.

Witton Lodge Community Association, The Active Wellbeing Society and Erdington Community Response worked in partnership with the support of 19 volunteers, packing and distributing the huge tally of parcels last Friday.

Flourishing Community Services Manager at Witton Lodge, Rob Netherway, praised the efforts of all those involved

“This was a huge increase from our usual food delivery, which is normally around 75 parcels each Friday, meaning we were able to reach and help even more people,” he said.

“This was an excellent example of upscaling the support we can provide. We continue to work with our local partners to increase the distribution of food with more volunteers being recruited to help pack the parcels.

“To get such a large number of parcels ready and sent out underlines the shared commitment to making sure we reach the most vulnerable members of our community with the support they need.

“Volunteers are crucial to all of the support we are providing to our communities, so a big thank you to everyone who is giving their time to help vulnerable people stay well.”

If you would like to donate food or supplies to help our elderly and vulnerable residents you can bring them to Witton Lodge Community Association at Perry Common Community Hall, 87 Witton Lodge Road, Perry Common  B23 5JD, Monday to Friday, between 11 am and 3 pm.
 

Guidance for Eid 2020 during COVID-19

Friday, 22 May, 2020

This Ramadan has been a very different experience for Muslims around the world and in Birmingham due to the impact of Coronavirus and the celebration of Eid will also be different.

Since the 23 March 2020, following the UK Government’s official announcement that all places of worship should close, alongside the advice of both the Muslim Council of Britain and British Board of Scholars and Imams that Muslim communities must pray from home and not congregate together for worship, Mosques and communities across the UK have diligently and responsibly adhered to the guidance and advice which has continued for the duration of Ramadan.

Mosque leaders in Birmingham have been working extremely hard and have been instrumental in ensuring that lockdown measures are strictly adhered to in order to protect lives.
Your continued support with these difficult decisions has meant that collectively we have been able to:

  • Restrict the spread of coronavirus in Birmingham
  • We are beginning to see the benefit with deaths and new cases on the decrease

However, we are at a critical juncture where any easing of social distancing would risk another peak and undue all the hard work undertaken thus far.
Unfortunately, this means that restrictions cannot be removed foreseeable future and not before Eid this coming weekend. This means that congregational prayers within Mosques or outside in open spaces are still not possible.
Our clear guideline based on Public Health advice to continue protecting live, reduce the further spread of the coronavirus and risking a second peak is:

  • That Eid is celebrated at home
  • Not to hold congregational prayers on Eid day at Mosques, parks, open spaces or private gardens (two people from separate households constitutes a congregation)
  • Not to visit family members and neighbours
  • Adhere to the meeting of one person outside your household in open spaces rule
  • Adhere to social distancing rules when visiting the cemetery

Please utilise the plethora of social media platforms that exist to celebrate Eid virtually with your family and friends.

Chaand Raath
In recent years we have seen a cultural event of Chaand Raath (night of the moon) taking place on the night before Eid. This has involved large numbers of people congregating to celebrate and mark the end of Ramadan and the arrival of Eid. Chaand Raath is a spontaneous event that has no official organiser or sponsor and this lack of coordination and planning presents a great risk for the coronavirus spreading.

With the current COVID-19 regulations preventing more than two people (not from the same household) gathering in a public space. We, therefore, request that people do not come out and put the health and safety of themselves, their families and of others at risk; this message
is endorsed by all the main mosques in Birmingham, Birmingham City Council and West Midlands Police.

  • Neighbourhood police officers and trading standards officers will be on duty to engage and explain that the event has been cancelled.
  • Any person gathering in breach of COVID-19 legislation will be encouraged to leave
  • Those who fail to take notice will be dispersed, fined up to £100 or as a last resort arrested.

Cemeteries and crematoria opening hours
All Birmingham cemeteries and crematoria grounds are now open at weekends for visitors from 12pm to 4pm on Saturdays and Sundays, with the exception of Lodge Hill cemetery, which will open 3pm to 6:30pm on Saturdays and 12pm to 4pm on Sundays. Sutton New
Hall cemetery and Handsworth cemetery which will both be open 5:30pm to 8:30pm on Saturdays and Sundays.

Those wishing to visit a cemetery or crematorium grounds should visit the Birmingham City Council directory for more information on opening times for each individual site. All sites are open on weekday evenings, from 4:30pm or 6:30pm depending on when services conclude.

It is essential to continue to follow Government advice on preventing the spread by regular hand washing and social distancing and guidelines on self-isolating. Birmingham City Council appreciates and respects the hard work our Mosques in the city are doing during this challenging time.

For more information, visit:
www.birmingham.gov.uk/coronavirus_advice
www.gov.uk/coronavirus
www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19

Click here to read the letter from Councillor Mohammed Azim, Lord Mayor of Birmingham and Councillor John Cotton. 

Birmingham charity CEO among charity leaders awarded unique development opportunity

Friday, 22 May, 2020

Sport 4 Life UK CEO Tom Clarke-Forrest is one of 10 small charity leaders awarded places on a unique initiative designed to both develop their own strategic and leadership capabilities, and transform a further 10 charities.

The successful applicants to Pilotlight’s 2020 Bursary Initiative will each be matched with three other senior leaders from the public and private sectors, forming teams which will support charities who have come to Pilotlight in need of strategic input. The engagement between these teams and their charities will be facilitated and project managed by Pilotlight, requiring just three hours of their time each month.

Recipients of the bursary, now in its third year, come from frontline charities in a broad range of areas:

  • Alan Avis, CEO, Croydon Mencap (learning disability charity, based in London Borough of Croydon)
  • Tom Clarke-Forrest, founder and CEO, Sport 4 Life UK (young people’s life skills charity, based in Birmingham)
  • Carole Cumino, CEO, Worcestershire Association of Carers (supports unpaid carers, based in Worcester)
  • Gareth Dixon, CEO, Young H&F Foundation (working across the children and young people sector in the London Borough of Hammersmith & Fulham)
  • Georgina Hoare, head of talking therapies, Wimbledon Guild (tackles social isolation in the London Borough of Merton)
  • Lindsy James, director, Active Fusion (children’s and young people’s sports charity, based in Doncaster)
  • Dan Jarman, executive director, Pact Global (UK) (UK operation of US-based international NGO)
  • Wayne Myslik, CEO, Consonant (migration and asylum charity, based in central London)
  • Steve Slack, CEO, SAYiT (an LGBT+ young people and sexual health charity, based in Sheffield)
  • Kathryn Williams, director, Rubicon Dance (community dance company, based in Cardiff)

Tom Clarke-Forrest said: "I'm delighted to receive a Pilotlight Bursary to enable my place as a Pilotlighter in a new team. I'm looking forward to supporting another charity on their exciting journey. Having benefited first hand from the Pilotlight programme, I'm a huge advocate of the approach, and I hope I can add value over the next year."

Bruce McCombie, interim CEO, Pilotlight, said: “The social change we ignite doesn’t just impact charities, it impacts the Pilotlighters who coach and mentor those charities too. That’s one of the many reasons why major businesses including Morgan Stanley, Lendlease and Sodexo sponsor their staff to become Pilotlighters.

“Pilotlight has now supported nearly 1,000 charity leaders and through the Bursary Initiative we’re enabling some of them to continue their leadership development by sharing their experience with another charity.”

Angela Smith-Morgan, CEO of Leukaemia UK and a previous Bursary Pilotlighter, said: "As a charity leader myself it has been so interesting to sit at the other side of the table, get to understand a charity in a different sector, and draw on my own experience to tease out the key issues. This is an invaluable opportunity to see the full dynamic of a charity, its governance as well as its operations - so satisfying to be able to help and support a charity whilst also learning so much myself."

The charities which will receive the support from the Bursary Pilotlighters’ teams will be matched over the next month, with engagements beginning this summer.

In the last 17 years, Pilotlight has matched more than 2,000 business leaders with nearly 1,000 charities since its inception. Pilotlight’s 2020 Impact Report shows that charities, on average, increase their reach by 36% and their income by 40% in the two years after working with the organisation.

Across all of Pilotlight’s programmes, participants report improved personal wellbeing, coaching skills, networks, career development and leadership skills.

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