tackling health inequalities in South London
South London Groups Celebrate Receiving Over £218,000 In Funding.

Nine good causes groups in South London are celebrating receiving £218,194 in funding.

Using money raised by HealthFreedom CIC, through The Health Lottery, the grants were awarded by People’s Health Trust through Active Communities, a funding programme which invests in local people and groups in communities, with great ideas to make their communities even better.

The groups receiving funding are:

Apsara Arts - £28,560 – This two-year project is the development of existing work by Apsara Arts. Working with girls aged 9-17 from South Asian communities in the London borough of Croydon, the project will provide weekly activities focused around art and food. An improvised drama workshop, which the group previously ran and which focused on Asian Girls’ issues around body image, was successful in engaged with the girls. The intention of the project is to enable the girls to voice their opinions, and form friendships with one another.

Between here and There - £25,290 – This new 18-month project that has been designed by existing service users aims to deliver a series of family arts and crafts sessions, utilising everyday objects and materials from around the home. The sessions are for 20 families in Croydon, who have already registered for the project. Activities will focus on bringing the community together to reduce isolation and improve local support networks. Participants will shape the programme via formal and informal feedback, and a steering group comprising three adults and three children will support project monitoring and evaluation.

Inaspectrum - £14,102 - This existing two-year project aims to deliver educational and recreational activities for people in Croydon who have autism and/or Asperger’s. Activities will include twice-monthly coffee mornings, monthly talks on Autism-related issues, occasional social activities such as cinema or theatre trips, short midweek breaks and four conferences on issues relating to Autism. Participants, many of whom find it difficult to participate in daily life and social activities, will organise the activities together, which will improve social cohesion, empowering them to feel more confident, better able to communicate and making them feel valued.

The Cara Trust - £30,043 – This new two-year project aims to develop a weekly support group for people with HIV, who are aged over 50, from the London Borough of Wandsworth. The activities will be decided by the participants but may include trips to museums and galleries, blowing, walks and going to the cinema. The intention is that the social groups will provide a safe and supportive space for isolated older people with HIV to get together and develop supportive peer networks.

The Friends of ELMWOOD - £21,000 – This new two-year project will recruit and train volunteers to provide one to one support to residents of Elmwood Care Home, some of whom are living with Dementia. The volunteers will form friendships with care home residents and support them to pursue their own personal hobbies, and plan trips out to the local area. Links with local community groups will be formed, so that they can become involved with life in the care home and deliver activities such as gardening groups, tea parties and musical performances.

Thornton Heath Community Action Team (THCAT) - £26,028 – This two-year project is the development of previous work. Last year, Thornton Heath Community Action Team helped transform litter hotspots in Thornton Heath, Croydon into beauty spots. The group now wishes to extend this, and develop street teams of residents of all ages from 20 roads in Thornton Heath. These teams will improve their streets and at the same time get to know their neighbours. Activities will include litter picking, planting, mending and producing, delivering a local newsletter. The intention is to make the local community feel happier, safer, more connected and empowered. The project aims to benefit local people of all ages and backgrounds.

Turf Projects - £11,599 – This two-year project continues existing work initiated in 2015. It involves professional artists supporting adults from Croydon, who have learning disabilities to experiment with new media and art techniques in weekly workshops. The intention is that the participants evolve artistically, gain confidence and benefit from the positive impact of art on their wellbeing, as well as to experience a sense of community. Participants are invited to take on leadership roles and share their knowledge with others in the group, with representatives also attending the applicant’s board meeting.

Asian Resource Centre of Croydon Ltd - £42,012 – This two-year project is the development and extension of a project currently funded by the Trust. The project will run dance, yoga and Tai Chi sessions, as well as coffee mornings for Asian elders from North Croydon. The project, led by a steering group made up of participants, aims to bring residents from different Asian backgrounds together.

Reaching Higher - £19,560 – This two-year project is based on a successful pilot. The charity Reaching Higher, will work with a group of young women, predominantly those from Black and ethnic minority (BME) communities, who live in South Norwood, Croydon, on a theatre project. The young women will create and perform plays based around issues that are important to them such as mental ill-health, body image and bullying. Once a play has been put together and rehearsed, it will be advertised for the local community to watch. The participants will be able to make new connections and friendships as a result of the project, as well as sharing their experiences with the wider community.

Chris Lunn, Director of HealthFreedom CIC said: “We are delighted that money raised by HealthFreedom is supporting such important local projects.”

Active Communities is for community groups and not-for-profit organisations, with an income of less than £350,000 a year, that are seeking investment of between £5000 and £50,000 a year for projects lasting up to two years. For more information, please visit www.PeoplesHealthTrust.org.uk

Money raised through the Health Lottery
The Health Lottery scheme manages 51 Society Lotteries that operate in rotation and each represents a different geographical region of Great Britain.
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