The Leaders of Gloucester City Council and Gloucestershire County Council have expressed their thanks to everyone in voluntary and community organisations for all they are doing at the present time.
They say, “The last month has been an extremely difficult and challenging time for us all, both professionally and personally.
We are both extremely proud of how everyone in voluntary and community organisations in Gloucester and across Gloucestershire as a whole, have pulled together to do their bit to tackle the spread of Covid-19 and support our communities. We want to say a specific thank you to you and those working with you for providing vital support, in what are incredibly challenging circumstances, to those that need help now more than ever. These are unprecedented times and to be able to rely on you and other similar organisations to bolster the resilience of our services and of our communities as a whole is essential to our ability to tackle and overcome this worldwide emergency.
We know you and your staff and volunteers are working under challenging circumstances. We would urge you all to remain safe. Please don’t put yourselves in positions where you or your staff and volunteers don’t feel safe.”
You can read the letter in full on our website at http://www.glosvcsalliance.org.uk/thank-you-to-everyone-in-the-vcs/.
Urgent request for PPE to support the county response to Covid-19
Can you help NHS and social care colleagues in the county by offering stocks of PPE?
The items listed below are urgently needed to support NHS and social care staff delivering care to some of the most vulnerable in our county. In this time of great need, please consider how you might be able to help.
- Waterproof gowns with long sleeves
- Nitrile (rubber) gloves
- Disposable gloves
- Disposable plastic apron
- Face Masks (fluid repellent)
- Goggles or full face masks (plastic)
- Full cover all disposable suits
If you can help, please provide details of the items you have, including quantities and how quickly they could be made available to Covid19transporthub@glosfire.gov.uk.
Offers to make PPE
The NHSE/I CoVid19 team is asking any volunteers offering to make PPE for the COVID-19 response, to register at https://www.gov.uk/coronavirus-support-from-business.
- Gloucestershire Community Foundation has awarded £153,391 to 48 charities in two weeks through its coronavirus emergency response fund. They are still open for applications. Most grants will be around £1,000.
- The CAF Coronavirus Emergency Fund is not accepting new applications due to the volume already received.
- A Coronavirus Mental Health Response Fund has been set up to support VCS mental health providers continue to provide mental health services or offer additional support. The funding is available for registered charities to either:
- Scale up existing activity – for example, your organisation may manage a helpline or a forum that is experiencing an unprecedented amount of requests
- Adapt existing activity–for example, you may have traditionally delivered all of your services in-person and now want to adapt them in order to continue meeting the needs of existing, or new, service users
- Introduce new activity–You may want to introduce a new service that will meet the specific needs of your service users that arise due, in part, to the coronavirus crisis.
If your organisation would be interested in making a joint bid to this Fund, please get in touch with Matt Lennard at email@example.com and the Alliance will coordinate.
- The Fore Trust has launched the RAFT Fund to help small charities and social enterprises to meet changing needs and remain viable and prepare for delivery when the acute phase of the crisis is over. The fund will initially accept 500 applications. Please note the Alliance has been unable to verify this morning (23 April) if the first round of this fund is still open or whether it is already over subscribed.
Emergency Funding Bulletin
The VCS Alliance has compiled a list of emergency funds set up in response to the coronavirus emergency. It includes those highlighted above. You can find this on our website at http://www.glosvcsalliance.org.uk/external-funding-opportunities-bulletin/. We have already sent details to our funding bulletin subscribers. We will keep the list updated on the webpage, last amended on 23 April.
Helping to build local resilience and combat loneliness
The team at Creative Sustainability team is currently providing a number of activities. To find out more please call 01453 798363 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Bikes for workers – donating fully refurbished bikes to local key workers
- DBS Checks – only available in Stroud district for volunteers supporting their communities
- Fiscal Hosting – for community led volunteer groups in Stroud district only
- Bike Skills Hub – share bike advice and stories online
- Phone Befriending – for people with long term conditions
- PenPals – bringing people together through postcards and letters
- Keeping Creative – sending art supplies and ideas, shared wild photography walks
Stroud Valleys Project launches new interactive wildlife spotting website
Stroud Valleys Project has developed www.wildclassrooms.org challenging participants to spot 60 different plants and animals in a year.
When individuals or groups register, they are given a virtual tree with bare branches. Each month they will be given five species to spot and when they are recorded on the site, a leaf will appear on their own tree. The more things they spot, the more leaves on their tree!
It is suitable for anyone of any age and it aims to celebrate the everyday wildlife that can be seen in our gardens and other local nearby green spaces. In our current isolated times, it is something we can do at home and will help us feel part of the wider community and kindle an interest for biodiversity, the environment and sustainability. www.wildclassrooms.org has been funded by a grant from the Summerfield Trust.