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£450,000 raised in first month of Somerset Coronavirus Appeal

Apr 16, 2020

The Somerset Coronavirus Appeal, launched by Somerset Community Foundation (SCF), has grown to over £450,000 since its launch just a month ago on Thursday 19 March [correct as at 16/04/2020].

The appeal raises money to fund local charities and community organisations supporting those in most urgent need during the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak, and donations have come from local individuals, charitable trusts and businesses. The Somerset Coronavirus Appeal has also been boosted by over £150,000 from a national appeal, run by The National Emergencies Trust (NET).

Justin Sargent, Chief Executive at SCF said: “Thanks to the incredible generosity of donors to our appeal and the national appeal, we’ve been able to rapidly make grants worth over £200,000 to more than 80 groups across the county, including foodbanks and food delivery schemes, support services for older people, and virtual counselling, with more funding going out every day. We’re indebted to the amazing volunteers and staff from local groups who are going above and beyond to keep people safe and well in these exceptional times.”

Grants of up to £10,000 are available for local charities, community organisations and volunteer groups helping those in most urgent need during the coronavirus outbreak, and SCF pledges to award funding within three working days.  Any groups wishing to apply should visit the SCF website, where they can complete a short, simple application form: www.somersetcf.org.uk/coronavirus

Citizens Advice Mendip provides support for people who need advice on a range of issues, including work, benefits, debt and housing. They received an urgent grant from SCF to help them quickly adapt how they delivered their services as a result of the coronavirus outbreak.

Ian Byworth, the charity's CEO, explains how Citizens Advice Mendip are now handling enquiries: “We don’t just help the more vulnerable or deprived people here at Citizens Advice; we help everybody. Our biggest challenge since the outbreak has been moving from face-to-face work to working remotely via email and telephone calls, and the grant from the Somerset Coronavirus Appeal has been critical in helping us achieve that. Providing laptops and mobile phones for our volunteers and staff has been a crucial part of allowing us to continue our work.”

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: www.somersetcf.org.uk/appeal or, if that isn’t possible, call us on: 01749 344949.

To support the national NET appeal, please visit: www.nationalemergenciestrust.org.uk/coronavirus

If you have any queries you can contact SCF by email at: info@somersetcf.org.uk or, if that isn’t possible, you can call: 01749 344949.

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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