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Heads Up £25,000
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Heads Up

Heads up is a Wells based Charity working with individuals across Mendip who are affected by mental health issues, dementia and other difficulties...

Heads up is a Wells based Charity working with individuals across Mendip who are affected by mental health issues, dementia and other difficulties Through helping people with mental ill health to feel good and function well, Heads Up works to build individuals’ ability to cope with life’s challenges and maintain well-being in the face of adversity.

The organisation provides services and activities that build resilience by promoting well-being and building social connections. These include social and therapeutic horticulture, pottery, woodcraft, cookery, arts and crafts and social groups, as well as complementary therapies.

Clients can choose which activity they wish to do. Activities aim to help individuals to build self-confidence, develop new skills, build social networks and open up new lifestyle, work and training opportunities.

Heads Up is well established and supported within the local community. It is continually raising awareness and trying to break the stigma associated with mental ill health and dementia.

Home-Start West Somerset £4,000
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Home-Start West Somerset

Home-Start West Somerset provides home visiting support for families experiencing difficulties with at least one child under the age of seven, enabling them to achieve positive change...

Home-Start West Somerset provides home visiting support for families experiencing difficulties with at least one child under the age of seven, enabling them to achieve positive change. We are a trusted local charity providing specialist family-focused
activities, operating since 2002. Over a 1000 families have benefited from this needs led service, focused on each family’s unique situation. We respond by making use of the experience, skill, knowledge and understanding that our trained home visiting team
offers. Referrals are received from our partner agencies as well as directly from families themselves. We meet identified need, which each family presents and which includes poor family functioning, challenging behaviour, conflict, mental ill-health, rural isolation,
lack of local services, domestic abuse, substance misuse, poor self-care, limited socialisation, limited play opportunities, poor diet, sub-standard housing, low income and lack of community involvement.

Home-Start West Somerset works in a region where many young families experience severe rural poverty and isolation. Economic disadvantage may be compounded by emotional or mental health issues, family break up, single parenting or domestic abuse and some of our families are from immigrant communities. West Somerset scores very low on indices of both economic productivity and of social mobility, and has high levels of unemployment and casual, seasonal employment.

Openstorytellers £4,000
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Openstorytellers

Openstorytellers is a charity that works to enrich and empower the lives of people who are marginalised because of learning and communication difficulties...

Openstorytellers is a charity that works to enrich and empower the lives of people who are marginalised because of learning and communication difficulties. We do this through varied work around the telling and sharing of stories, including personal narrative as well as classic stories.

Our work includes music, social clubs, friendship and life skills projects, work skills training, multi-sensory storytelling groups for people with profound disabilities, citizenship and advocacy and, of course, we have ‘The Openstorytellers’ – a professional user-led company of storytellers with learning disabilities. The Openstotrytellers perform at numerous festivals, events and community spaces throughout the year, spreading their message, creativity and inspiration through storytelling to wide audiences. Our audiences take great benefit from the performances – “We have been changed by today’s performance, thank you. Everyone will leave here today thinking in a different way” – audience member Festival at the Edge.

At the heart of everything we do is the concept of Storysharing®, a pioneering communication method based on personal narrative that empowers individuals. Openstorytellers enables people to use their voices and to be heard, both locally and in wider society.

Somerset Sight Limited £6,000
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Somerset Sight Limited

Somerset Sight is a not for profit organisation, embedded in the local community providing practical and emotional support to over 3,000 people and their families across the county who are blind or visually impaired...

Somerset Sight is a not for profit organisation, embedded in the local community providing practical and emotional support to over 3,000 people and their families across the county who are blind or visually impaired.

Our services enable sight impaired people and their carers to:

• Have increased confidence to live independently
• Have improved emotional well being
• Feel less isolated especially in rural areas
• Have increased access to volunteering, activities and work experience

We offer:
• Low vision aids and advice – Trained staff listen to needs, offer selected specialist items, lighting, magnifiers, talking clocks, kitchen utensils, which can be tried out and purchased.
• Volunteer Visiting Service – a partially sighted person is matched on a one-to-one basis with a volunteer, to offer friendship, help with correspondence, and trips out.

• Patient Support within hospital eye clinics
.
• Mobile Advisory Service – Information and specialist items brought to towns and villages throughout Somerset.
• Emotional Support – Sight loss may develop over time or arrive very suddenly – emotional support consultant is available to help people come to terms with their sight loss.
• Activities and social groups, audio library.
• Agents for British Wireless for the Blind.
• Rewarding volunteering opportunities for sighted and visually impaired people.
• Bespoke training.

Somerset Unit for Radiotherapy Equipment £4,000
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Somerset Unit for Radiotherapy Equipment

SURE was launched in 2000 to prevent patients from travelling to Bristol for Radiotherapy treatment...

SURE was launched in 2000 to prevent patients from travelling to Bristol for Radiotherapy treatment. The Cancer Centre for Taunton, The Beacon Centre was opened in September 2009. SURE fundraises to provide specialist equipment and training for specialist staff, for the treatment of cancer in Somerset. This is for equipment and training, not provided by the NHS.

As a result of SURE’s work The Beacon Centre has become a National Centre of Excellence. SURE has already raised £3 Million for the centre. One of their greatest achievements is that in almost 17 years of fundraising, the administrative costs amount to just 0.4p for every pound raised.

The Balsam Centre £15,000
Logo The Balsam Centre

The Balsam Centre

The Balsam Centre is an independent charity set up by local people to reduce health and social inequalities and promote good health and wellbeing, in Wincanton and the surrounding area...

The Balsam Centre is an independent charity set up by local people to reduce health and social inequalities and promote good health and wellbeing, in Wincanton and the surrounding area. (Population approx. 32,000).

As a vibrant community hub the Centre is accessible to all for a very wide range of health, social and educational activities and services. It also provides more specialist support to people for whom there is little or no alternative help and those who have fallen through the gaps of statutory frameworks. Our main strands of specialist service are as follows:

Best Start in Life. This is delivered through a Comic Relief funded project to improve outcomes for babies and children where mothers are living with post natal depression or finding it difficult to cope.
Social Inclusion. The Centre combats social isolation and loneliness in people of all ages and circumstances due to e.g. rurality, poor physical health, financial difficulties, or the loss of a partner.
Mental Health. The Centre provides effective individual counselling and support for people with common mental health problems, typically depression or anxiety that lead to self-destructive behaviour. Young people who are self- harming are a particular focus of this work.

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