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Good causes in West Cumbria receive financial support

Cumbria Community Foundation is continuing to support community groups in West Cumbria through grants worth almost £130,000.

25 charitable organisations received a share of the funds at its recent West Cumbria Grants Committee. The money came from funds set up by local people and businesses including Lord Egremont, Lamont Pridmore, LLWR and Thomas Graham & Sons Ltd.

With UK unemployment figures at a record high amid the COVID-19 crisis, TEGVirtual CIC, with the support of £16,976 from the Beverley Charitable Trust Fund and Live the Dream Fund, will be offering training to young entrepreneurs affected by the pandemic.

Keith McMean, Founder & Group Director at TEGvirtual, said: “The funding will allow 20 young people to access our Entrepreneurial Programme, supporting 16 – 25 year olds in Allerdale and Copeland. It will give young people in our community the opportunity to develop their own business ideas with the aim of actually setting up a business in West Cumbria, not only impacting on our learners on the programme, but impacting on our community and economy.”

“If you are aged between 16-25 and live in the Allerdale or Copeland area and have a business idea, we would like to hear from you, please visit our website for further information”

#CanDo is part of Transforming West Cumbria, a £2.2 million programme developed by Cumbria Community Foundation and funded by Sellafield Ltd and the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority (NDA).

#CanDo encourages young people across West Cumbria to apply for funding for community projects. Those applications are then considered by a youth panel, putting the decisions firmly in the hands of the next generation.

Together We CIC received £4,442 from #CanDo for its Together We Do project, which offers training for young people to be Community Wellbeing Champions (CWCs).

Janine Ward, Managing Director, said: “10 young person will undertake training in delivering emotional resilience, body image, exam stress and keeping well workshops, and deliver these to groups of young people in the local community or schools. These young people will encourage conversations about mental and physical health and wellbeing with their peers and wider community members with the aim of more young people recognising skills to improve their health and wellbeing or seeking support if required.”

Last year, Spiral supported more than 500 young people affected by bullying by offering a free confidential service to build resilience and reduce the effects that bullying can have. The charity received £4,994 from #CanDo for its Peer Community project.

Founder, Maryann Liddle said: “The funding is a great boost for staff and volunteer moral at Spiral. We can continue to employ our young project worker and recruit up to four volunteers. With COVID-19 there has been a huge disruption in ‘normal life’, young people are not able to socialise and this is an important part of their development, this is causing uncertainty in young people which is leading to increased anxiety and low mood.

“The peer community site will be a monitored space where young people can talk to other peers, staff, and volunteers, attend game nights run by staff and volunteers, access free downloadable resources and local information. With young people’s mental health worsening, a positive social interaction can make a big difference; it supports the developing brain and cognitive thinking and can bring some happiness to their day.”

Centre for Leadership Performance (CfLP) received £4,992 from #CanDo to develop the Leading Change campaign that will enable it to engage with 12-14 year olds who so often fall through the gaps in career planning and work experience.

Sarah Glass, Executive Director, said: “A central element of our work is providing new opportunities for young people to see beyond their own circumstances to a better, more prosperous future, and to give them the confidence and self-belief that is such an important part of personal success.  Our activities with young people also equip them with the life skills that come with wider experience and interaction with role models beyond their own family and school orbit.

“Leading Change gives them a voice and empowers them to make decisions, to make commitments and ultimately to make a difference to their communities.  We know from our other programmes that sort of activity can be a life-changing experience for your people, broadening their horizons and instilling a new confidence in themselves, and in their futures.”

Annalee Holliday, Grants & Donor Services Officer at Cumbria Community Foundation, said: “There are many worthy organisations in West Cumbria that will raise young people’s aspirations and build their confidence. Charitable giving puts money into disadvantaged communities and unlocks more resources through people’s voluntary efforts. We are grateful to the generosity of our fundholders to enable us to support these vital services, especially during times when local services are under pressure and struggling to meet local needs.”

To apply for a grant or for more information, visit or call a member of the grants team on 01900 825760.

NHS Charities Together fundraising to benefit Cumbria

The NHS Charities Together COVID-19 Community Partnership fund, managed by County Durham Community Foundation, is now open for grants of up to £250,000 to partnership projects across the North East and North Cumbria.

Born out of public generosity, the fund has £1.4million available to support partnerships of organisations to tackle health inequality, digital poverty and fund mental health support.

During the pandemic more than £140m of charitable funds were donated by the public for great causes. The unforgettable Captain Sir Tom Moore, who was knighted for his efforts, inspired more than £30million alone in donations.

Now this money, through membership association NHS Charities Together, will fund three key themes: addressing health inequalities, support for mental health and wellbeing, and support to overcome digital poverty for vulnerable people disproportionately affected by the pandemic.

Teri Bayliss, Director of Newcastle Hospitals Charity, representing the NHS charities throughout the North East and North Cumbria said: “I don’t think any of us will ever forget the way the public responded to Captain Sir Tom as he did his part to help the NHS. He inspired so many others and together, millions have been raised. It is so uplifting to see this money now become available for worthwhile projects in our communities at a time when need is so high.”

Cumbria Community Foundation is supporting County Durham Community Foundation to administer the funding.

Andy Beeforth, Chief Executive at Cumbria Community Foundation, said: “As a Community Foundation, we are delighted to be able to support this funding to reach where it is most needed. By supporting valuable NHS and community projects, the fund will ease some of the strain on the NHS, as its wonderful staff fight to save lives threatened by the pandemic. The fund will also provide long-term support for communities as it addresses some of the additional health problems individuals and families will face – caused or worsened by the pandemic and lockdowns.”

Applications are welcomed from projects in the following areas; Durham, South Tyneside, Sunderland, North Cumbria, Newcastle and Gateshead, Northumbria, North Tyneside and Tees Valley.

If your project is based in North Cumbria, please contact Annalee Holliday at Cumbria Community Foundation on 01900 825760 or email before submitting an Expression of Interest.

Expressions of Interest must be submitted by 31st January 2021, which can be accessed here.

North East and Cumbria charity sector share over £1 million NHS funding

Thanks to funding provided by NHS England, charities and community groups across the North East and Cumbria have received additional money this winter to support people experiencing hardship and at risk of mental ill health.

The North East and North Cumbria Integrated Care System (ICS) worked with Cumbria Community Foundation and County Durham Community Foundation to directly fund voluntary sector organisations and relieve winter pressures on the wider healthcare system.

Grants of up to £25,000 were available from the NHS Winter Resilience Fund to support voluntary and community sector interventions, promoting positive mental health and wellbeing in the widest sense and for all ages. Eight community organisations in Cumbria received a share of almost £100,000 and 38 in the North East benefited from just over £900,000.

Funded projects include emotional and wellbeing support specifically for older people, counselling for carers, targeted mental health support for high-risk individuals, extra capacity to support people with drug and alcohol dependencies, and professional 1-1 mental health support for anyone aged 11 and over.

Age UK Carlisle & Eden received £18,000 towards a complete holistic service offering physical, emotional, social, and financial health and wellbeing support to older people most affected by the pandemic.

Alison Ambrose, Chief Executive, said: “The NHS Winter Resilience Fund has enabled Age UK Carlisle and Eden to develop a confidential and accessible service, which supports vulnerable people and to help them through the winter months. We provide opportunities for individuals to talk confidentially and be there to offer practical and emotional support.”

Since the first lockdown in March last year, Cumbria Alcohol and Drug Advisory Service (CADAS), has been ‘business as usual’ for people with addictive behaviour, and their family members and carers, with support being offered online, via telephone and video conferencing. January can be a particularly difficult time of year for people suffering from an addiction and winter can be a trigger for many people’s mental health decline. The charity received just over £5,000 to provide additional support by increasing staff hours, while offering clinical supervision for all staff.

Chief Executive, Leigh Williams, said: “The funding will make a significant difference in a few short months. Firstly, we will be able to offer recovery support to an additional 10 people throughout north Cumbria as we increase our staff hours. Secondly, we are investing in the physical and mental health of our staff team by offering them some personal supervision so that they can continue to see and support several vulnerable people week after week as they work from home in isolated conditions themselves.”

Time to Change West Cumbria runs the Women Out West centre in Whitehaven. It received £17,250 to employ a full-time therapist to offer face to face and virtual support during winter.

Rachel Holliday, Director, said: “Lockdown during summer was awful for so many of our isolated women who were afraid and anxious. Winter, with dark nights and the cold, is far worse.

“In order to provide the best service to our most vulnerable women, we understand their complex issues need to be addressed sensitively in a trauma informed approach. We believe this service will prevent women slipping into crisis. It’s important we all have someone to turn to in these uncertain times, now we can make sure no one is left feeling alone and frightened. The Women Out West team aim to leave no one behind as we continue our fight against domestic abuse in our community.”

The Together We Talk project, led by Together We CIC provides 1-1 and small group mental health and wellbeing interventions. It received just over £25,000 to provide additional support over the winter months.

Sam Joughin, Director at Together We CIC, said: “Since the project launched in April last year, we have taken over 400 referrals and we are currently working with 300 active clients day to day. We are thrilled to receive funding as this has allowed previous funding to be extended and additionally, staff to maintain and increase clinical hours to support a wider number of people throughout the ongoing pandemic.”

If you are struggling with your mental health, the Together We Talk project can support you. Email, call 0808 196 1773 or visit

John Lawlor, Chief Executive at Cumbria, Northumberland, Tyne and Wear NHS Foundation Trust and Senior Responsible Office for the North East and North Cumbria Integrated Care System Mental Health Programme, said: “I am grateful for the support provided by Cumbria and County Durham Community Foundations, this joint working approach has enabled the winter resilience funding to reach grassroots projects that impact positively on our communities. The funding is spread throughout North Cumbria and the North East and we are confident this will make an impact on the lives of our most vulnerable residents.”

Andy Beeforth, Chief Executive at Cumbria Community Foundation, said: “We are passionate about improving the health and wellbeing of people living in our region and we embrace the opportunity to work collaboratively to implement positive and sustainable change. We are very proud that our voluntary and community sector organisations are increasingly recognised for their pivotal contribution across the region.

“The Fund was significantly over-subscribed with more than 150 applications received, requesting a total of £2.6 million, demonstrating the clear need for this funding and the role of the sector in responding to the needs of our local people, while reducing pressure on the NHS.”

The NHS Winter Resilience Fund is now fully spent, however, if groups still require funding, they are encouraged to contact Cumbria Community Foundation by calling 01900 825760.

Grants available from Cumbrian legacy fund

Cumbria Community Foundation is urging more community groups in the Wigton area to apply for funding through the Joyce Wilkinson Trust Fund.

Joyce Wilkinson, who lived in Westward, left a lasting legacy to her community and a wonderful way to be remembered. Since the fund was managed by the Foundation in 2006, more than 91 local organisations have benefited from a share of £600,000.

One of the organisations to have benefitted year on year from grants is the Northern Fells Group, receiving a total of 26 awards. Other groups have included Wigton Baths, Chrysalis and Citizen Advice Allerdale.

Like many leisure facilities, Wigton Baths was closed for most of last year, resulting in a loss of income. The 115 year old community baths will continue to offer its facilities thanks to a grant for £5,000 meaning local residents and school children can continue enjoying the wellbeing benefits of swimming.

Kath Tyson, Director of Wigton Baths Trust, said: “Wigton Baths Trust are thrilled to accept this grant from Joyce Wilkinson Trust Fund. It will make all the difference to the shortfall we now face. No one could predict what happened last year and the impact it has had on all our lives and businesses in this extraordinary way.”

Due to the coronavirus crisis, Chrysalis, which provides support to adults with learning disabilities, had to adapt it services and offer alternative support through outreach activities in the community. A grant for £2,924 will support outdoor activities throughout the colder and wetter months thanks to outdoor garden shelters at each of its locations. These will provide a community hub at each site where members and support staff can drop into when the weather becomes bad, or to pop into and use for refreshments and lunches.

Claire Doherty, CEO at Chrysalis, said: “Since the pandemic, we now provide a lot more support on an outreach basis in the community, and this funding has provided a dry and safe place to stop for a while.”

Introducing Cumbrian primary school children to leadership, entrepreneurship, and teamwork is the Centre for Leadership Performance (CfLP) Bright Stars programme designed to get children excited about the world of business.

Centre for Leadership Performance received £2,072 to enable pupils from Tomlinson School and Silloth Primary School to benefit from this extra- curricular activity.

Claire Johnson, Primary Programme Manager, said: “The additional funding will enable us to work with more schools in the Wigton and Silloth area and provide more opportunities for primary school children to take part in this exciting programme. Bright Stars introduces children to enterprise and leadership and the world of business from a young age while helping to nurture creative thinking, confidence and aspirations. The programme provides opportunities for schools and business to forge ongoing relationships and for young children to link their learning to local careers and jobs.

“Due to the COVID-19 restrictions, this year’s competition has moved ‘from making a profit’ to ‘making a difference’. In 2021, the children and their business partners are challenged to develop campaigns to deliver positive change on an issue or subject that matters to them.  School business teams will develop digitally led marketing ideas and activities and will also compete to win funds for their schools with prizes in ten categories including best leadership and teamworking. But most importantly, pupils and their business partners will have fun!  We look forward to seeing the ideas put forward by our area’s future entrepreneurs.”

The funding is available to community groups in the former county of Cumberland, especially those in the Rosley and Westward, Caldbeck, Wigton and Aspatria parishes.

Grants are distributed from the fund twice a year and the Foundation is looking for more applications especially from projects supporting older people, children and young people.

Ellen Clements, Senior Grants and Donor Services Officer at Cumbria Community Foundation, said: “We are enormously proud to have been able to carry on Joyce Wilkinson’s legacy. It shows how amazing the gesture was for Mrs Wilkinson to have created the Trust for the benefit of the community that she lived in.”

Applying to the Foundation for a grant is straight forward and staff are always looking to help organisations with their applications.

The deadline for applications to the Joyce Wilkinson Charitable Trust Fund is 10th May 2021. For more information about how to apply, contact Ellen Clements by phone 01900 825760 or by email