This week it’s all about Small Charities and the opportunity to celebrate and raise awareness of the essential work of the UK’s small charity sector.
We’re delighted to share with you just some of the inspiring local organisations that we support, making a big impact within Surrey.
“Loveworks is a small charity working in Reigate and Merstham with one simple aim; to improve the lives of some of the most vulnerable groups of people in the area – from the elderly to the hungry.
With projects like “Cuppa Tea Club” which offers a regular opportunity for the elderly and isolated to socialise, to our 3 weekly foodbanks which provide emergency help to those in crisis.
All of our projects are reliant on the Foundation’s financial support through our many fundraising activities. Quite simply without their support, we would not be able to reach those who need us in our community.”
– Linda Sourris, Charity Officer
“The grant from the Foundation has been wonderful in enabling our group to support families with a child with special needs. Often within families, there is a feeling of isolation, the falling away of friends, the exclusion from social events. A child with special needs creates a family with special needs, and siblings are often called to greater positions of responsibility and independence than they would have been within a “normal” family.
Our support group aims to help the whole family. We go on outings during school holidays, which gives parents the opportunity to meet and make friendships, and helping families with a recent diagnosis to navigate the complicated routes involving educational and care needs.
School holidays are especially difficult for these families, and the money from the Foundation, enabling us to arrange these outings, is greatly appreciated. In addition to the holiday day trips, we have had monthly meetings with a speaker of relevance to the needs of the group.
There is a continuing need to support these families, with cuts in many grants and restrictions on services available to them. The support, friendship and advice is truly helpful, and possibly preventative of larger problems.”
– Jeanne Kalorkoti, Charity Leader
“MGSO4 Arts was formed in 2015 as a grassroots response to the desire to be a more creative community.
Over the years, funding cuts mean that the Borough of Epsom & Ewell has no one organising creative activities and events. We are volunteer-led, with no core funding and operate entirely through sponsorship, donations and ticket sales from fundraising events.
Grants from the Foundation have enabled us to develop innovative, enriching arts projects for particular disadvantaged groups. In 2017 we designed and delivered the intergenerational ‘Washed–off Memories,’ where 40 dementia care home residents were paired with 25 children from 3 local primary schools for a series of ‘freestyle thought and memory’ clay workshops. Both residents and children found the sessions very rewarding. There was a real sense of pride when artwork was exhibited as an interactive public installation in Epsom Square.
One of our aims is to create more unity through creative activities. We delivered the Borough’s first week-long multi-arts festival in 2016, and the second runs this year from 2nd – 8th July. Thanks to the Foundation grant, one of our festival projects will involve an interactive public artwork, created by people experiencing difficulties in their lives.”
– Maria Reeves, Festival Director
“The Lucy Rayner Foundation was founded in May 2013 following the death of Lucy Rayner, who took her life on 5th May 2012.
Since her death, together with our Trustees, we have worked tirelessly towards promoting and raising awareness of the physical and mental signs and symptoms of young people suffering from depression. We do this through education and campaigning, fundraising to support the services that we provide to the local community and will support and work alongside any charitable organisations that have the same objectives as The Lucy Rayner Foundation. We seek to facilitate a change in the way mental health is perceived by society. Through our services, we aim to build mental resilience and stamina in our young adults, to enable them to thrive in society, by providing support for them and their families.”