£800,000 awarded to good causes in Cumbria

24th May 2022

More than £800,000 has been awarded to a range of good causes in Cumbria and the Borders, tackling a range of issues including homelessness, poverty and domestic violence.

More than 40 community organisations received a share of £793,000 and 14 people benefited from £11,270 to increase sporting, artistic and career achievement.

The money was awarded at Cumbria Community Foundation’s recent grants committee from funds set up by local people and businesses, including Thomas Graham & Sons and Shepley Group.

Helping to relieve loneliness and connect people in the community, Gateway Church in Kendal received £31,900 over three years.

Rev Jonny Gios MA, Community Connector at Gateway Church, said: “It’s wonderful to not just receive funding for our community development work across Kendal but also have people who believe in what we’re doing. With this support we’ll be able to build on what we’ve already achieved in our community through a very difficult time.

“We know the next chapter is going to be challenging on many other levels, but this support will help us to connect, signpost, refer and support those who desperately need it. The work in our community is vitally important to us so to be able to continue to employ a dedicated community connector is fantastic news – to see our work flourish.”

EdenVentures received £1,600 to offer subsidised places for children from low income and vulnerable families to attend a five-day summer holiday programme. Summer Weeks is for children aged 5 – 13 and provides a full week of outdoor adventure, exploration and creative activities, including a sleep over.

Anna Clapp, Project Leader, said: “EdenVentures took over the much-loved Summer Weeks Project from Eden Community Outdoors when it closed in 2016.

“Our work has always been important for combatting rural isolation in the holidays, and two years into the pandemic, we are seeing that children and young people need time outdoors, in a fun and safe community, more than ever.

“Due to the funding, we can offer places at different rates, including fully funded via our agency support partners, so that we are as accessible as possible. We work with individuals from different economic and family backgrounds, and due to our high staff and volunteer ratios, we provide an inclusive service meeting complex behavioural and emotional needs of our participants and young volunteers.”

iCan Health and Fitness CIC received £5,000 from the Cumbria Fund to develop a peer support group for men based in Carlisle. The group will help build a support network where men feel safe to talk.

Lisa Bridgewater, Managing Director, said: “We are beyond thrilled to have received support for a men’s emotional wellbeing support group. This will be called ‘Men Supporting Men’ and is a peer-led session for all men aged 18+ to discuss and improve their emotional wellbeing without necessarily knowing it.

“Our lived experience mentor, Daniel, will gently lead conversation on how to improve mental and emotional health and how to talk about feelings with a mix of wellbeing activities, fun games and adventures to lighten the load.

“We’re delighted to confirm the first session will take place on Friday 10th June from 10:30am-12:00pm at the WeCan Wellbeing centre in Carlisle. Sessions are free to all. Men who are currently not working or signed off work for mental health reasons are strongly advised to come along and see if the sessions will help.

If you would like to enquire about joining the group, or for more information, contact Daniel on 08000 386018 or visit www.icanfitnesscumbria.co.uk

Many young carers miss out on the same opportunities as other children as their caring responsibilities mean they have to grow up early. They often miss out on vital school and training, which has a negative impact on the rest of their lives.

In South Lakeland, Carer Support South Lakes received £4,973 to provide an internship for a young person to work alongside its existing team to encourage and support young carers to take part in a range of support groups, activities and trips.

Debi Marsden, Chief Executive Officer, said: “Despite the fact we help well over 1,200 unpaid carers from the age of five to cope with their caring responsibilities, there are still many in the South Lakes area struggling. One of the main aspirations of all the team here is to reach out and help as many unpaid carers as possible. The young carers intern will help identify young carers within our community and be a mentor for our younger carers.”

South Whitehaven Youth Partnership received £62,380 from the Better Tomorrows Fund to employ two new staff members to offer detached youth work over the next three years.

Jacq Cardy, Project Manager said: “Our aim is to engage with young people who are not accessing centre-based youth club provision, offering the same high quality youth work where young people can build positive relationships with their local youth workers, access support, advice and guidance, take part in informal issue based workshops and social action projects.’’

The deadline for the next round of applications is 17th June 2022.

Annalee Holliday, Senior Grants Officer at Cumbria Community Foundation, said: “We are grateful to the generosity of our fundholders to enable us to support these worthy organisations that are working hard during these difficult times to meet local needs.”

For more information or to apply visit, www.cumbriafoundation.org or call the grants team on 01900 820827 or email grants@cumbriafoundation.org