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Fund open for bids to improve people’s wellbeing

Herefordshire Council is inviting bids for funding from the county’s voluntary and community sector, to pay for exciting and creative projects that can improve people’s lives.  To spark innovation and talk through how the fund can be used successfully, a workshop is being held on 14 July from 9am-12noon at the Kindle Centre, Hereford.

The Wellbeing Innovation Fund was launched in November last year.  It offers grants of between £5k and £20k for projects that aim to improve people’s health and quality of life, particularly those who are vulnerable, at risk of social isolation or loneliness.

Since the launch in November, 11 awards were made across the county to a total value of £147k.  Creative ideas submitted were broad, ranging from a men’s shed project targeting older men and encouraging them to get out and meet others with similar interests, to a befriending project where lonely people are supported to get out and about by a band of volunteers.

At the workshop on 14 July, two of the successful projects will be showcased including Herefordshire Wildlife Trust’s “Grow your own Community”.  This project focuses on bringing the community together around a communal piece of land to grow things together and create something beautiful for everyone to enjoy.  In addition, Rural Media’s “This is me” video project will be featured which is about showcasing the skills of people with learning disabilities for potential employers.

Councillor Patricia Morgan, cabinet member for health and wellbeing, said: “This fund is open to local schools, parish councils, community groups and social enterprises, or anyone who is keen to support local people’s wellbeing and has a creative idea they wish to develop.

The first round of funding resulted in 11 projects receiving funding. For those who succeeded, it was very much the way they wanted to deliver what they wanted to do that made the difference when we looked at their ideas.  Wellbeing and innovation is key – thinking creatively about how to reach the kinds of people who struggle with loneliness and social isolation and what can be done to make a difference.   

To help people who have ideas but aren’t sure how to develop them further, we’re putting on a free workshop on 14 July.  This really is an opportunity to do something that will make a difference to the lives of vulnerable people and boost local communities.

Anyone wishing to attend the workshop on 14th July is encouraged to sign on using the following link: . https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/wellbeing-innovation-fund-workshop-tickets-17527516273 or speak to Alex Fitzpatrick on 01432 383038.