Surrey Coronavirus Response Fund awards £118,730 to support vulnerable local people

1st April 2020


Last Thursday 26th March, we launched an urgent appeal for funding towards our Surrey Coronavirus Response Fund, set up to address the many urgent funding requests of local charities and voluntary organisations across the county. We have been overwhelmed with the positive response in donations, and together with the generosity of local donors and funds made available for distribution in Surrey from our first allocation of the National Emergencies Trust Coronavirus Appeal, we have now raised £400,000.

We are today delighted to announce the first grants awarded from our Coronavirus Response Funding, totalling an incredible £118,730 across 25 grants, that will support the vital groups working hard in the relief effort of this ongoing pandemic.

Grants of up to £5,000 are available now, with priority given to organisations providing support to the most vulnerable and isolated – including older people, those with disabilities and/or mental health needs and families in need.

Below are just some examples of how these grants will make a difference to the lives of people in Surrey:

Brockham Emergency Response Team (BERT)

was set up to respond to local emergencies and help protect the lives of those in distress. Funding was awarded to set up a foodbank in Brockham Church to provide for those in financial hardship during the Coronavirus pandemic, many of which are older and vulnerable people. Working in partnership with Mid-Surrey Community Fridge and Fare Share, BERT source donated supplies from supermarkets and centrally co-ordinate requests from residents received by phone and email, and provide goods based on three levels of need.

Age Concern Mole Valley

supports older people across the district. The charity received funding to support the costs of its Befriending Service which supports older people, especially in times of crisis. The Coronavirus outbreak has affected the charity’s services by stopping all face-to-face service delivery, resulting in a telephone befriending service. The service involves volunteers telephoning clients to reduce isolation and loneliness.

Oakleaf Enterprise

offer work-related training, work experience and wider support to local adults suffering mental ill-health. Funding was awarded for essential running costs for their Client Services Department, so that they can deliver support to vulnerable clients remotely. Whilst face-to-face activities have had to cease, they are able to continue providing invaluable support to Oakleaf clients, most who live isolated lives and are dependent on the charity’s services for social contact. This crisis response offers daily telephone and email support by Client Services staff, remote counselling as well as remote well-being activities.

The additional 22 grants can be found here:

  1. Cherry Trees received funds towards their essential running costs to continue to offer respite care to the parents of children with complex needs
  2. Citizens Advice Elmbridge West received funds for equipment for their team to work remotely in order to continue to offer specialist advice
  3. Disability Initiative received funding to deliver an outreach approach, continuing to support people with severe disabilities
  4. Dyscover Limited received funds for online classes for people who have survived strokes
  5. East to West received funding to continue to support young people
  6. Emerge Advocacy received funds to support vulnerable young people suffering with mental ill-health exacerbated by the outbreak
  7. Emmaus Transformation Trust received funding for supplies, offering school items to children living in poverty
  8. Esher & District CAB received funds for equipment to enable their team to continue providing advice services for free, via remote working
  9. Home-Start Spelthorne received funding for salary costs to enable help and support to be given to families with children under 5 via remote methods
  10. Intergenerational Music Making were awarded funds for a project to bring connection and joy to isolated older people
  11. LinkAble in Woking received funding to support children and adults with learning disabilities
  12. Rainbow Trust Children’s Charity were awarded salary costs for a Family Support Worker, supporting families with terminally-ill children.
  13. Renewed Hope Trust received funding for the compiling and distribution of food parcels to vulnerable people
  14. Stanwell Events received funding for delivery costs to provide 200+ cooked meals per day to vulnerable people
  15. Stanwell Food Bank received a grant for the essential running costs of a foodbank serving Stanwell
  16. Surrey Drug and Alcohol Care were awarded funds towards a Telephone Counselling Service for people suffering from mental-ill health
  17. The Hope Hub Trust received funds towards their essential running costs, to continue to support, house and feed the homeless
  18. The Meath Epilepsy Trust were awarded funds to purchase equipment to keep residents’ mobility and cognitive conditioning up, all for people who have complex epilepsy and severe physical and learning difficulties
  19. The Orpheus Centre Trust received funding for the ongoing running of their centre supporting young disabled adults
  20. The Vine Day Centre were awarded funds to support new telephones and a cook-and-delivery service for vulnerable local people
  21. White Lodge Centre received funding towards a remote physiotherapy service for individuals who suffer with long-term neurological and physical conditions
  22. Woking MIND were awarded funding for equipment offering remote support to people suffering from mental ill-health

The aim of our new local response fund is to provide quick and responsive grant-making to those across the county that need it most. We will continue to award grants from the Coronavirus Response Funding for as long as we are able.

We are incredibly grateful for all donations that we have received so far, but there is still great need, with a further £700,000 of requests currently in progress. If you would like to donate to the Fund, you can do so via the secure online Virgin Money Giving page and by direct bank transfer. If you would like to donate via bank transfer, please contact Laura Thurlow on 01483 478086 or email

If you are interested in applying for Coronavirus Response Funding, we encourage you to read the eligibility guidelines and apply online here. Applications can be made either by filling out a short online form or by selecting a time for a telephone interview with a CFS volunteer.