PCC Angus Macpherson has announced a new grant fund of £50,000 for the communities of Wiltshire and Swindon.
The Police and Crime Commissioners COVID-19 Response Fund looks to support community and voluntary groups that have been impacted by the Coronavirus pandemic.
Who can apply
Local and regional organisations where most people benefiting from the grant live in Swindon or Wiltshire:
constituted voluntary or community organisations
not-for-profit companies including community interest companies where a majority of the directors receive no payment from the company
parish and town councils (for activities to meet people's needs as a result of the coronavirus only)
churches and other religious organisations (for providing non-religious activity only).
branches of national organisations if there is:
a local management committee based in Swindon and Wiltshire
a local constitution
a bank account controlled by the local branch
Voluntary organisations with no constitution or bank account if:
linked with a constituted organisation or local statutory body (eg parish or town council). The grant will be paid to that organisation.
Who can not apply?
Statutory bodies such as city and county councils or health institutions
What you can apply for
You can apply for a grant towards:
Services you have set up or adapted to meet needs which people have because of the coronavirus situation
Keeping your organisation going during and after the crisis*
New projects or developments of your existing service*
*Our priority in making grants to help organisations keep going or develop are:
Small, grassroots voluntary organisations who serve people who are disadvantaged (socially, physically, geographically or financially)
operate in communities and with people who cannot afford to cover the costs themselves.
are modifying their services and financial plans in the light of the coronavirus situation.
Applications for a grant to replace lost income with no evidence of modifying services and plans are unlikely to be successful.
What can the grant pay for?
Any reasonable costs related to meeting needs which people have because of the coronavirus situation
Costs to help keep your organisation going during and after the crisis, provided you are serving people who are disadvantaged (socially, physically, geographically or financially) in a financially deprived community
New projects or developments of your existing service, provided you are serving people who are disadvantaged (socially, physically, geographically or financially) in a financially deprived community
(Note that grants towards capital projects (buildings and equipment) are up to £5000 only and you must already have most of the rest if the total cost is more than £5000)
Grants cannot be to provide money to individuals or families.
The Police and Crime Commissioner has made £50,000 is available for the communities of Wiltshire and Swindon.
Priority will be give to applications that assist the PCC in achieving his three of his main priorities as set out in his Police and Crime Plan:
Priority One - Prevent crime and keep people safe
Priority Two - Protect the most vulnerable people in society
Priority Three - Put victims, witnesses and communities at the heart of everything we do
This funding will form part of the Wiltshire Community Foundation's Wiltshire and Swindon Coronavirus Response Fund.
Projects funded through the COVID-19 Response Fund
Organisation and amount funded
Open Blue Trust
The Open Blue Trust provides support to families with pre and primary age children in isolated communities, including the Thingley Traveller site near Chippenham. It uses a double-decker bus as a mobile community centre and has been visiting the Thingley site for more than ten years. It has good relationships with the families and over time have improved their view of the importance of education, introduced IT skills and provided a carer and toddler group to help pre-school children develop vital skills to underpin their education. During the coronavirus restrictions it was unable to take the bus out but kept in touch with families by providing advice and signposting where required. It also made and delivered activity packs every three weeks to maintain engagement with the children and families in what is a very isolated and wary community.
Wiltshire Youth for Christ
Wiltshire Youth for Christ (WYFC) serves young people in Devizes, Trowbridge and surrounding areas. This funding enabled WYFC to undertake detached youth work across the county in towns and villages, engaging with young people to provide opportunities for them to share and process their experiences and concerns. The project involved two senior youth workers, a bank of trained and DBS-checked local volunteers, and a purpose-built mobile pop-up cafe/van (operating in line with Covid requirements). Its aim was to listen to and engage with children and young people and provide a safe place to enjoy time with others at a time when so much remains closed. It has also helped them flourish now and as they return to full-time education.
Young Melksham has been delivering services to young people in Melksham since 2011. This funding enabled it to provide detached youth work through trained youth workers, reaching out to support vulnerable young people, including those who are particularly disadvantaged, those with additional needs and those not observing social distancing rules. The detached youth work started in response to the Coronavirus situation when centre-based activities were suspended and remote support was offered to meet the needs of these vulnerable young people. Counselling has also continued and been scaled up to cope with demand while outreach workers also promote the online and virtual support offered by Young Melksham. The skate park was a particular focus, but workers also visit the other areas where young people congregate.
The RISE Trust
The RISE Trust provides services through Children's Centres in Chippenham, Calne, Royal Wootton Bassett, Malmesbury, Purton, Corsham and Cricklade. In normal circumstances it also runs two youth groups in Chippenham, however during the crisis it provided support online to its members. Funding enabled it to provide detached youth work with young people who were congregating outside, at risk of breaching Covid-19 guidance, and at risk of exploitation (prior to lockdown the workers had identified some County Lines activity in Chippenham and were working with police to support young people at risk).
Trowbridge Future has been working in Trowbridge for more than 20 years and saw increased demands as a result of Covid 19. This grant enabled it to continue to run its core services and respond to the new needs of the community, including staffing and resources for the community hub and additional Covid safeguarding measures. The hub provides information and advice to some of the most vulnerable residents in Trowbridge and it also runs a weekly women's empowerment group for vulnerable local women. Trowbridge Future also provides social, emotional and practical support to young people across the three most deprived areas of Trowbridge (Studley Green, Seymour and Longfield) through the delivery of regular youth clubs, a one-to-one mentoring programme through John of Gaunt School and detached youth work at the Stallard's Skate Park. This grant helped fund a youth worker to support young people through one-to-one mentoring.
The SMASH Youth Project
The SMASH Youth Project is a charity which provides one-to-one mentoring for young people aged between 13 and 19 who are either struggling at home or school.
Project director Moira Leitch said: "Most of the children that come to us are not able to cope with the demands of everyday life.
"All children will be referred into to us as a result of behaviour they have displayed - most of the behaviour is classed as socially unacceptable but there will be a reason for it and it is our role to help them understand themselves, like themselves and find some direction."
Swindon 10-18 Project (STEP)
STEP has been delivering a range of therapeutic programmes to more than 400 young people in Swindon since 1985. During the pandemic it continued regular contact through weekly telephone calls, updates on social media and producing videos as well as sending wellbeing, mindfulness, and activity resources. Funding was to meet the costs of safely re-establishing therapeutic work with younger children to improve their mental health and emotional wellbeing post Covid-19. The children and young people referred to STEP often have multiple and complex needs and experience isolation and exclusion due to personal circumstances or poverty. Young people attend a two-hour session each week for ten weeks, focussing on specific themes such as anger management, building relationships and keeping safe. STEP needed additional staffing and resources to operate within Covid guidelines, to provide extra group sessions to meet increased demand and new referrals, to manage the virtual support package for families on the waiting list - including weekly phone/email contact and provision of ‘parent guides’, and to ensure increased deep-cleaning.
Kandu Arts Community Projects CiC
Kandu has been operating since 1998 providing alternative education provision in Wiltshire and has also been delivering community projects, after school/holiday clubs for young people aged eight-18 years predominately in the north of the county, since 2016. The majority of young people referred to Kandu have difficulties and behaviours which have prompted referral to CAMHS teams, many have SEN, display disruptive behaviour and are at risk from exclusion. This grant was to help fund two additional staff for to provide mentoring and individual support to young people and towards their afterschool clubs.
SMASH Youth Project
This grant went towards the running costs of SMASH, providing mentoring for young people in Swindon who are facing challenges and disadvantage, to help them make positive changes in their lives. Each young person has one-to-one support over a period of 12 weeks to six months. They are supported to set personal goals and targets, transforming destructive behaviour patterns. With the support of a mentor, they can participate in new activities, build confidence, become more active and healthy, take more control over their own lives and progress toward personal independence.
Buzz Action Foundation CIO
Buzz Action manages a range of youth services including three youth/circus clubs in Salisbury and Amesbury and a range of free community activities. Activities are open to all but many of its members face additional challenges due to financial disadvantage, rural isolation or difficulties resulting from ADHD or learning difficulties. This grant was towards reopening two of its youth groups (in Salisbury and Amesbury) and continuing to provide free family activities during school holidays, focusing on areas of deprivation.
Westbury and Warminster Youth Clubs
Warminster and Westbury youth clubs closed during the lockdowns and some online support was available for young people, as required. The clubs are often a refuge for young people who would otherwise be hanging around on the streets or feeling socially isolated from their peers. Both Westbury and Warminster have pockets of deprivation and the youth clubs are particularly aimed at those who are unable to access other more expensive activities. The grant was to enable the clubs to cover the costs of reopening, post lockdown, in line with guidelines, and to ensure they are Covid-safe.
Until the pandemic the charity worked with 600 young people from Melksham and the surrounding villages annually. This funding was to enable safe reopening of youth services in Melksham post lockdown, as they resumed three of their youth clubs for children age 11 and above (on Thursday and Fridays). Many of the young people attending the club live in families on low incomes and they have limited affordable or accessible alternatives. Over half of the young people attending come from the Forest community in Melksham, one of the most deprived areas in the county.
This funding was towards setting up a new detached youth work provision in Westbury, where there was previously no detached youth work being delivered. Westbury is a low income area and has distinct pockets of deprivation. Westbury Town Council and Sovereign Housing had identified the need for detached youth work due to lack of opportunities leading to low level anti-social behaviour. They approached Young Melksham to bring their model to the town with a particular focus on the more deprived areas such as Penlee and Oldfield Park. The detached youth work provides an avenue for young people to access safe support and explore issues affecting their lives. Adolescent mental health is a recognised need in the area. Young Melksham will also be providing Teen Talk which offers an independent service to address young people with health issues and those who are a risk of self-harm. Teen talk accepts referrals from young people and their families; community partners, such as schools, GPs, police; and referrals and recommendations from the youth workers.