Councillor Liz Fairhurst, Hampshire County Council’s Executive Member for Adult Social Care and Health, who agreed the funding, said: “These organisations provide extremely valuable locally based support within communities across Hampshire. Very often they are offering the little bit of extra help that makes all the difference in enabling people to remain living independently in their own homes. The County Council is committed to providing support which develops local neighbourhoods and these grants are a great opportunity for us to support projects which share our commitment.”
Age Concern Hampshire will receive £60,000 over an 18 month period to recruit new rural connector volunteers and refresh training for existing volunteers so the organisation can expand their service across rural Hampshire in an effort to help reduce social isolation.
The Good Neighbours Network will get £150,000 over a period of 18 months to support the work of the 120 neighbourhood groups currently operating across Hampshire - providing a wide range of services, such as befriending, social activities and transport assistance. Last year these groups supported around 27,000 Hampshire residents undertaking 161,500 interventions with over 4,000 volunteers.
Timebanking UK will get a grant totalling £15,000 over a five month period between November 2018 and March 2019. Timebanking is a way for people and organisations to share skills with others in their community and be rewarded for it in time, rather than with money.
This grant money will be used to support the 10 fledgling timebanks across Hampshire, located in: Totton, Andover, Whitehill and Bordon, Fleet, Aldershot, Ringwood, Fareham, Gosport, Eastleigh and Basingstoke.
A review of the County Council’s adult social care grants programme, involving the voluntary sector, was undertaken in 2016. The new grants programme focuses on longer term funding for the voluntary sector and community organisations, beyond a one year term, to enable the sector to make longer term plans to support Hampshire’s residents.