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Members from SWALLOW Community Cafe, one of a number of initiatives funded

Local projects to improve mental wellbeing in B&NES awarded £17k

Bath City Farm, Wansdyke Play Association and SWALLOW are among 10 community groups and charities benefitting from grant funding to improve mental ill health and loneliness across Bath and North East Somerset.

Some 16 local organisations applied to the ‘Bath and North East Somerset Community Wellness’ Fund grant programme this year, with successful applicants awarded up to £2,000 in funding to use to improve the health and wellbeing of local people through their selected initiatives.

Virgin Care is responsible for the grant programme as part of its contract with Bath Council and the local NHS to bring health and care services together and improve outcomes by allowing local people to stay well and proactively look after their health. It funds a number of grants each year and is managed by the Quartet Community Foundation who run the application and grant award process as well as tracking outcomes.

The programme is aimed at community groups and charities in Bath and North East Somerset targeting loneliness and isolation, and delivering projects promoting healthy lifestyles to enable local communities to tackle some of the causes of mental ill health.

Grants were awarded to 10 local community groups and charities including to Bath City Farm to enable them to launch a new offshoot group run by long-term members of ‘Make & Bake’, their therapeutic crafting and baking project.

Wansdyke Play Association was also awarded funding for a family play and eat project, open to all, with a particular emphasis on young boys. SWALLOW’s funds will support two Bistro clubs for their members to meet up and enjoy new experiences.

Grants awarded through the 2017/18 programme are:

Southside Family Project£1,300For a project in Southdown involving growing, cooking, sharing and eating healthy food.
Bath Mind£2,000For a project in Keynsham which will include an evening session group for people who want support to maintain their mental wellbeing.
Wansdyke Play Association£1,992.50For a family play and eat project in the Somer Valley, open to all, with a particular emphasis on young boys.
Sporting Family Change£1,956Towards fitness sessions for women who are survivors of domestic abuse.
Bath Carnival£2,000For workshops to support members from Julian House and Genesis Trust.
Make a Move£1,750For a support worker to work with mothers as part of a post-natal depression group.
SWALLOW£1,000Towards two Bistro Clubs for SWALLOW members to meet up and enjoy new experiences.
Bath City Farm£1,998To launch a new group run by long-term members of the ‘Make & Bake’ therapeutic crafting and baking project.
Reason£2,000Towards counselling costs for people with addiction related problems.
Stitch Friday (Bath Mind)£1,496To launch two new complex crafting courses.

Sue Turner, Chief Executive of Quartet Community Foundation said: “We are so pleased to manage this fund for Bath and North East Somerset and the main aim through the grants programme has been to strengthen communities and reduce loneliness and isolation.

“There are some amazing groups working in the area, who work with people to increase their independence, confidence, self-esteem and skills. The grants awarded will support these groups in that vital work and promote health and wellbeing in Bath and North East Somerset.”

Kirsty Mathews, Managing Director of Bath and North East Somerset Community Health and Care Services for Virgin Care, said: “We’re delighted to be able to fund local projects that we know will help improve mental and physical wellbeing and make a difference from the wide range of activities that these grants support.”

There will be another round of funding from the grant programme later in 2018.

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