Children and young people

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Spotlight on Beanstalk

1. Tell us what you do.
Beanstalk is a literacy charity working with Schools to offer a service of trained ‘Reading Helpers’, who on average work with three children, to provide constant support on a weekly basis, for a whole school year.

We recruit, train and support volunteers to provide consistent, one-to-one literacy support to primary school children who may have fallen behind with their reading, lack confidence, or struggle with their fluency, comprehension or vocabulary.

Our aim is to develop their love of reading and improve their confidence levels.

Why not visit our website at www.beanstalkcharity.org.uk to find out more about us.

2. What is the most valuable lesson you have learnt about working with people in Sandwell?
The most valuable lesson we have learnt is that connecting our volunteers with the children is a great way to inspire confidence.

Jack Ogalbe, a Reading Helper said, “The joy on their faces when they discover a new word is hugely rewarding”.

Being a part of Beanstalk is a great way to make a difference to a child’s life and is a satisfying volunteering experience.

3. What are your plans for the future and some of the challenges you face?
Our future plans are to break into Nursery Schools with a view of supporting children aged 3 upwards. Our challenge to turn this dream into reality is for us to recruit new Reading Helpers to support our growth into Nursery Schools.

4. How can SCVO help to support your organisation in the future?
In the future, we’d like SCVO’s support to help us to promote our activities and attract new volunteers’. This would enable us to continue to provide the simple yet highly effective service.

For more information or to become a volunteer with Beanstalk please contact us on 0121 7712922 or by email at westmidlandsapplications@beanstalkcharity.org.uk


An ACE too many – Working to prevent Adverse Childhood Experiences

Sandwell’s Health and Wellbeing Board will be hosting an event called, An ACE too Many – Working to prevent Adverse Childhood Experiences in Sandwell.  This will be from 9 am – 1.30 pm on Monday, 3 July 2017, at Sandwell Council Chambers, Freeth Street, Oldbury B69 3DE.

The fixture will focus on the prevention of adverse childhood experiences (ACEs), as part of the on-going work on Prevention of Violence and Exploitation (PoVE).

The Board aims to raise awareness around engaging local schools and front line practitioners to identify:

• The Board’s existing approach to ACE
• The Board’s effectiveness at identifying ACE
• What support pathways are already in place
• What can be done to improve the Board’s approach

The event will be particularly relevant to:

Children’s services practitioners
Adult social care practitioners
GPs/Pharmacists
Library services
Faith groups
Local police/fire/ambulance services
Youth support/services and anyone else who works with children and young people

You can book your free ticket by visiting the Eventbrite page.    

For more information contact Rachel Allchurch on 0121 569 5163.


Henry Smith Charity (Holiday Grants)

Schools, youth groups, not for profit organisations and charities have until 21 July 2017 to apply for grants of £500 to £2,500 to support recreational trips or holidays within the UK for groups of children experiencing disadvantage or who have disabilities.

Funded by the Henry Smith Charity, grants can cover up to two-thirds of the cost of a holiday or trip lasting one to seven days. In this round, trips must be taken before the end of August 2017. For more details and to apply, complete the eligibility quiz on the website and submit the application form online at least 6 weeks before the trip is due to take place.

Although the deadline is the 21 July, decisions are made on a first come-first served basis, until all funds have been allocated.

More information


Toy Trust

Charities working with disadvantaged young people aged 13 or below can apply for funding of up to £5,000 from the Toy Trust.

Founded by the British Toy and Hobby Association, the Toy Trust – the industry’s charity – exists to raise money predominantly from the toy industry, its suppliers and friends; and distribute the money raised to charities helping disadvantaged and disabled children within the UK and abroad.

Funding is available towards projects that help disadvantaged children and their families to alleviate suffering; support children through awful experiences; encourage achievement through adversity; purchase vital equipment; provide care; bolster existing initiatives; initiate brand new projects; and satisfy basic needs.

To be eligible the charity accounts must have unrestricted net assets of not more than £200,000 or of less than one year’s income.

There is a rolling deadline.  Applications can be submitted at any time.

More information


Cricket for 5-8 year olds comes to Coseley

Children aged five to eight can start playing cricket at special sessions run by Coseley Cricket Club in June and July. It’s part of a nationwide initiative from the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) called All Stars Cricket, which aims to give children a great first experience in cricket.

Coseley Cricket Club are providing 8 weekly sessions starting from, Monday 5 June, 6.30 pm to 7.30 pm. The activity and game based programme is suitable for all skill levels, providing children with the foundations to begin a life-long love of physical activity, while also making friends in a safe and enjoyable environment.

Each child that registers not only gets special training but also will receive a pack containing:
* backpack
* cricket bat
* cricket ball
* cap
* water bottle
* personalised shirt

To register visit allstarscricket.co.uk  and type Coseley Cricket Club into the search box.

To get in touch with Coseley Cricket Club, contact Stuart Knight on stuart.knight9@gmail.com or coseleycc@gmail.com.


BUPA Foundation


The BUPA Foundation has launched a new funding round through its Healthy Futures funding programme. BUPA UK funds practical projects to tackle challenges in health and social care and make a direct impact on people’s health and wellbeing.

This funding round is focused on young adults aged 18 to 25 and the Foundation is specifically interested in projects that will have a positive impact on the health and wellbeing of young adults who face ongoing health challenges. The Foundation expects to make 12 to 15 grants and aims to support a wide range of initiatives delivered by different organisations across the UK. The majority of grants awarded are for £20,000 or under. A small number of grants have been awarded within the £20,000 to £50,000 range, and occasionally grants of over £50,000 are awarded.

Funding is NOT available for projects delivered by local authorities or housing associations or work which might reasonably be eligible for funding from statutory bodies.

The closing date for applications is the 19 May 2017.

More information


Fund for ‘looked after children’ and young carers

The British and Foreign School Society has launched a new programme dedicated to improving approaches to the educational attainment of ‘looked after children’ and young carers in the UK.

Government data shows that looked after children have significantly poorer educational outcomes than children not in care throughout primary and secondary school, with the gap widening as children get older. Young carers experience similarly poorer educational outcomes and studies suggest that almost a third of young carers experience educational problems, such as absenteeism, as a direct result of their caring role.

The programme offers funding and non- financial support and aims to pilot novel approaches to improving the educational attainment of these children and young carers which can be scaled up so that in time they are able to take advantage of opportunities afforded by tertiary education and employment.

Funding of no more than £100,000 will be available over a 3-year period and match funding will be required. Applications will be considered from educational or training institutions which have UK charitable status or, in the case of schools, colleges, universities and Churches, “exempt charity” status.

There is a rolling deadline. Applications can be submitted at any time.

More information


Fund to run summer holiday 2017 play schemes

Registered charities and community groups that want to run summer play schemes for children between the ages of 5 and 16 can apply for grants of between £500 and £1,000. The funding is made available by the Woodward Charitable Trust which supports about 35 play schemes each year that run for a minimum of 2 weeks or 10 days across the summer holidays.

Preference is given to:
• Small local play schemes that provide a wide-ranging programme of activities
• Schemes that involve a large number of children
• Schemes catering for those from disadvantaged backgrounds or that have a disability
• Schemes that are inclusive such as projects that work with children from a range of backgrounds, abilities and race
• Schemes where past users are encouraged to come back and help as volunteers.

Grants can only be paid to registered charities. Organisations that are not a registered charity can still apply but need the agreement of a registered charity to accept the grant on their behalf.

The deadline for receipt of applications for the Summer Play Schemes is the 31 July 2017.

More information.


Life Changes Trust

Young people aged 21-26 who have at least three months of care experience have until the 12 May 2017 to apply for funds from the Aspirational Awards from the Life Changes Trust.

The fund aims to empower care experienced young people to think big about their future and transform their lives with a significant grant to help them reach their best potential. The funding is flexible and designed to meet the specific needs of individuals but priority will be given to applications that show how the funding will:

• Have a long-term, positive impact
• Achieve aspirations in life
• Be used to support something which the individual has already made steps towards achieving.

There is no specific grant amount and applications will be assessed based on what each individual is applying for.

More information.


Music for Alice Fund

Music for Alice, which was established in memory of Alice Macgill, a talented young musician who died in the Indian Ocean tsunami in 2004, has announced that the next closing date for applications is the 10 May 2017.

Through the new programme, grants of up to £1,000 are available to help groups and organisations purchase musical instruments or equipment. Awards can be made to any group, organisation or charity based in the United Kingdom that has a formerly constituted character and can demonstrate that securing funding will enable them to improve lives through music.

Music for Alice is targeting two distinct groups. These are the “Music for Youth” award which is aimed at applicants focussed on using music to improve lives for 0-19 year olds; and the “Music for Health” award which is aimed at applicants focussed on using music for health or rehabilitation benefits.

Previous projects supported include Rosie’s Rainbow Fund, who give music therapy sessions to children in hospitals, and Beat it Percussion, who deliver drumming workshops at retirement homes and nursing homes, adult day care services and Special and mainstream Schools.

More information


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