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Foundation Scotland, Scotland’s community foundation, has announced the total amount distributed through their dedicated crisis fund now exceeds £6 million to date. This significant level of funding breaks all its previous records and illustrates the continued and growing needs coming from groups supporting those most vulnerable throughout the country.

By John A. MacInnes
Wednesday, 18th November 2020, 8:23 am
Check the website to see if you meet the criteria.
Check the website to see if you meet the criteria.

The community foundation is today stressing that the Response, Recovery and Resilience fund remains open. Foundation Scotland is now particularly eager to support groups to get ‘winter-ready’, so they’re better equipped to deliver essential services through the darker, colder, winter months ahead. For example, to enable groups to extend counselling and wellbeing services remotely, to purchase all-weather protective clothing, to create virtual energising activities through the cold dark months or to offer phone-based companionship for the isolated.

Helen Wray, Head of Programmes at Foundation Scotland, said: “It’s been a long seven months since the crisis began, we hoped we’d be able to get back to a little more normality by now.  However, it looks unlikely that restrictions will ease any time soon and we’re painfully aware the next few months will bring even more significant challenges as the nights get longer, darker and colder. Two local projects who have benefitted from funding are Goathill and Springfield Residents Association who received £5,000 for their project to safeguard those families and individual who are vulnerable especially coming into the winter months.

“They will look at mental health issues, stress and related challenges to the families that exist and who are vulnerable in their area. There are a number of families who are unemployed and are on housing benefits and universal credit.”

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The grant will enable the association to provide food and electricity vouchers to 40 vulnerable people facing economic hardship and anxiety in the Goathill and Springfield area of Stornoway.

Potential beneficiaries will be identified using information from the street coordinators, who are the members of the management committee who represent the individual streets in the area. The project will also draw on information from the local foodbank. The vouchers will be redeemable at the local Spar, which is the principal shop in the area. Electricity vouchers will be used to buy top up credit for prepaid meters. Some beneficiaries will receive both food and electricity vouchers.

The Parkend and Holm Residents Association (PHaME) have also received a grant of £5,000

The group is based on the isle of Lewis and works with the 224 households living in this remote rural area. They organise and support local residents to improve their community through events and projects that benefit people’s physical health and mental well being. During the past six months during the restrictions, they have been providing food parcels and vouchers to the most vulnerable as well as delivering medicines and essentials to those who were self isolating or unable to access transport.

Helen continued: “We’re always encouraged by the resilience and strength we see in our communities.  Groups across the country are coming together to urgently deliver essential and critical services to those most in need.”

For more details, eligibility criteria and to apply online visit https://www.foundationscotland.org.uk/