Grants of up to £10,000 available to help charities and communities recover

July 9, 2020

The Somerset Coronavirus Appeal, launched by Somerset Community Foundation (SCF), is offering funding of up to £10,000 to local charities and community organisations delivering frontline work that will help communities recover from the impact of the coronavirus outbreak.

The first phase of the appeal has already seen grants of almost £500,000 being awarded to more than 170 local good causes across the county, including food deliveries for older people, online counselling, activity packs for disadvantaged children and support for struggling families. 

Justin Sargent, Chief Executive at SCF explains: “Since the lockdown started, we have seen an incredible response from charities, community groups and volunteers who have worked tirelessly and collaboratively to ensure our neighbours were cared for and supported. Groups have created new services and adapted existing services to continue supporting those in need online or by phone.

“But we know many groups are facing a combination of increased demand for support, alongside losing income due to coronavirus. This next phase of funding will focus on helping local groups respond to the changing needs in their communities and supporting their financial resilience so they can continue their work over the next year and beyond. Our communities will need them more than ever in the years to come as we recover from the wide-ranging impacts of coronavirus.”

Any groups wishing to apply should visit the SCF website where they can find guidance on how to make an application:

The funding has been made available thanks to generous contributions made to the Somerset Coronavirus Appeal by local individuals, charitable trusts and businesses, as well as funding from the national appeal, run by The National Emergencies Trust (NET). The Somerset Coronavirus Appeal, which was first launched on Thursday 19 March, now stands at £850,000 [amount correct as at 09/07/2020]. The charity aims to raise a total of £1.5m through the appeal.

Yeovil Community Meals Service received a grant from the Appeal to help them hire an extra chef and driver so they can help more people in need.

Penny Mitchell from the charity said: “Almost overnight, we’ve had to increase our meal deliveries by about 50% due to increased demand. Many older people we deliver to are in their 80s and 90s, usually looked after by family members who now aren’t able to travel or have their own health issues. Some have been discharged from hospital and aren’t able to cook for themselves. The care system is also experiencing staff shortages which impacts those we help as their carers can’t come in and cook for them as they normally would.

“The funding from SCF has been brilliant. It means we haven’t had to increase the prices of our meals and break into our reserves, which is important as we know that the need for this expanded service will be long-term. 

“I honestly don’t know how people would cope if we weren’t there – we’re the only hot, fresh meal many older people get. We’re proud that every person we support receives a meal that is personal to them and made with love and care.”

SCF is passionate about doing as much as possible to support our communities, and is encouraging local people, businesses, charitable trusts and organisations who feel able to donate to the Somerset Coronavirus Appeal by visiting the SCF website:

Community Foundations are local champions, connecting people and organisations that want to improve their communities. They invest in local people and organisations tackling some of the biggest issues facing communities today and supporting some of society’s most disadvantaged people. They provide help and advice to those who want to give at the heart of their communities, both now and in the long-term, by matching donors to important local causes.

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