A community foundation works to promote philanthropy within a specific geographical area. It does this by raising new monies to build endowment funds from individual and corporate fund holders, making grants from the investment income and other funds to community groups tackling local disadvantage.
Shepley Engineers Limited established the Shepley Group Fund in 2009. The fund is now worth more than £120,000 and is a lasting legacy to Cumbria. It provides funding to the hardest to reach communities through ‘grassroots’ charities and community groups.
A recent grant to the Cumbria Theatre Trust has had a positive impact on the health and wellbeing of people living with dementia. ‘Setting the Scene’ enables people living with dementia and their families and carers, to engage with and benefit from regular arts activities at Theatre by the Lake.
The weekly sessions offer simple and fun creative workshops to help people share and connect. Members can enjoy refreshments, conversation, storytelling, music, song, dance and games.
Delivered by specialist creative practitioners, each session starts with social time, before moving onto planned activities. The sessions are themed each week, but are very person centred and focus on what the participant can do and enjoys.
Nick Houghton, Managing Director of Shepley Engineers, said: “We established our fund with the express aim of providing support to those in need in our community. This grant to Cumbria Theatre Trust is a perfect example of how our fund can do this.
“Cumbria Community Foundation do an excellent job in managing our fund and we are continuing to donate and build it, ensuring our community support can continue for a long time into the future. We believe this type of economic support provides real social benefit, which is something all companies should consider.”