November 2020

Monthly Archives

B&Q Community Reuse Scheme

The DIY store, B&Q, operates a reuse scheme through its branches in the UK. Beneficiaries of unsellable items for reuse are hospices, registered charities, youth groups, scouts and guides, pre-school groups and registered child minders, community groups, schools and colleges.

All items are donated on the understanding that they will be re-used or disposed of responsibly if they are not used.

Donated items, includes:
– Old products that have been written off
– Plants that are not in peak condition and other compostable materials
– Wood, including off cuts and single use pallets
– Plastic plant pots and trays
– Damaged or part filled cans of paint
– Broken tiles and slabs
– Ends of wallpaper rolls

Groups that are interested should contact the store, to be added to its community group database. The store will get in touch when it has something to donate.

Find out more about Community Reuse

Funding for Special Schools and Colleges

Special Schools and Colleges may apply for grants of between £15K and £75K, through the Funding for Special Schools and Colleges grants programme, from the Wolfson Foundation. The funding covers capital costs such a buildings and equipment.

Projects should aim to assist pupils to develop skills to help them gain employment or live independently after leaving school. Organisations must have at least a ‘good’ rating, be a registered charity or local authority and, if applicable, be registered with the relevant regulatory body.

The Funder is looking for at least for one of the following outcomes:

• Improved financial stability
• Increased access to services for new and existing users
• Improved range and quality of services.

Further information


Planning for Future Uncertainty?

Charities don’t have a crystal ball enabling them to see into the future however you can make your charity more resilient to this uncertainty, by scenario planning and looking to investment into the organisation in these uncertain times to help develop resilience.

Charity Digital News takes you over their four steps in helping to create a more resilient organisation with topics including managing risks and scenario planning to developing scalable plans that helps your organisation ride out the storm.

To read the full article click here.

Source: Charity Digital News


Top Tips for Marketing for Social Organisations

The Directory of Social Change in their article provide their five top tips for marketing for social organisations which includes marketing is a skill that everyone in the organisation should connect and engage with to measuring your success and testing that it is working the way you planned it to.

They explain the importance of understanding your intended audience and ensuring your staff and volunteers understand this, as well so that they can talk to them at the same level making the messages more meaningful, to those your aiming on attracting to your organisation for whatever reason.

To read the full article click here.

Source: DSC

The Importance of A Thank You Letter

In SOFII’s article they explain the importance of both connecting and engaging with your supporters or investors and why you shouldn’t wait to long to say thank you.

Your thank you letter is the most important thing next to your appeal that a supporter will receive so it needs to sparkle with sincerity. If you want to keep more of your supporters and stand a part form the pack, a carefully crafted thank-you letter is a perfect place to start.

A well written thank you letter not only tells the story of what their donation is being used for it helps create a connection that shouts loud and clear: ‘You matter to us…and your donation makes a difference.’ If you fail to develop this connection you are potentially losing the supporters continued investment in your organisation and it’s activities moving forward.

The article asks you to consider:

  • How soon after a gift is received do we send a thank-you letter?
  • Do we note the amount of the donation or gift?
  • Do we recognise long-term and repeat donors? If not, is our system capable of this?
  • What kind of information do we have on our supporters?
  • If any, what kind of donor feedback have we received on thank-yous?

To read the full article click here.

Source: SOFII

Community Safety Partnership Survey

Community Safety Partnerships (CSPs) are the statutory body that bring together local partners to solve shared issues around: Crime and Disorder, Anti-Social Behaviour, Drug and Alcohol misuse, and Reoffending.

Each year, Community Safety Partnerships are required to undertake strategic assessments to help to inform their priorities. The root causes of crime and disorder are complex and multi-faceted – local partners are well placed to respond and continue to work hard to understand how to make real and lasting impacts. We are interested in hearing from you about how crime and disorder presents to you and the issues that you would like prioritised.

This survey should take you no more than 3 minutes to complete.

If you wish to take part in the survey, this is the final time it will be sent out. However, if you have already completed this survey, on behalf of Community Safety Partnerships, may I take this opportunity to thank you for your time.


Help the ‘State of Sandwell’ to access Mental Health for Everyone

Changing Our Lives are looking for people from minority ethnic communities living in Sandwell to talk to them about how COVID-19 has affected their mental health.

Changing Our Lives are a rights-based organisation working with communities to find solutions to injustice and inequality. Every year their Sandwell Mental Health People’s Parliament speaks to 100 people in Sandwell about what mental health means to them, how they keep mentally healthy and what happens when they experience mental health difficulties. This is called the ‘State of Sandwell’. Anonymised findings from the State of Sandwell are used to push for better access to mental health support in Sandwell.

Everyone has times of good mental health or times when we struggle. For the State of Sandwell, Changing our Lives don’t just want to speak to people who identify as having mental health difficulties. They want to speak to people from all walks of life.

This year, Changing our Lives are talking to people from minority ethnic communities about the impact of COVID-19 on mental health. This is because studies have shown that some minority ethnic communities in the UK are less able to access mental health support, and some minority ethnic communities in the UK have been hit hardest by COVID-19 and the effects of the national lockdown.

If you are from a minority ethnic community in Sandwell and you want to talk to Changing our Lives, please get in touch. All conversations are held in complete confidence, over the phone or video chat, at a time to suit you. It takes around 30 minutes to complete.

You can get more information by contacting Holly on or call 07534 000831. You can fill in web form here.

Funding to support the delivery of the Next Census in March 2021

A census takes place every 10 years in the UK. It is a compulsory survey that gives the most accurate estimate of all people and households in England and Wales.  The next census is due to take place in March 2021 and will be a ‘digital first’.

Working with the Office for National Statistics, the Good Things Foundation is looking for organisations which can deliver online digital support between March and May 2021.  Support will be targeted on areas of greatest need, where residents face a combination of digital exclusion and other barriers that may make it harder to participate.

Organisations are encouraged to apply as soon as possible.

There are a range of contract sizes depending on the number of advisers and hours worked each week.

For any questions regarding the Census Support Service or the application process please contact the Census Support Team at /0114 349 1666

Further information


“I’ve got an Idea” Fund Opens for Applications

Individuals, small groups or organisations in the UK who have a new skillful idea which they want to try out can apply for grants of between £250 and £5,000.

Schools and groups of school children can also apply as long as the idea is technically inventive and original and, if it worked, delivering either an environmental or social benefit. The fund is looking for ideas that:

• are based on a technical idea or innovation;
• could deliver a social or environmental benefit;
• are intriguing, inventive and have an element of fun.

The fund has been set up in memory of Peter Williams by his family. Once the fund’s allocation for the year has been used, it will be closed for applications until the following year.

Further information

16 Days of Action – help is available for victims of domestic abuse during Covid-19

Sandwell Council and the Sandwell Domestic Abuse Strategic Partnership are taking part in the United Nations 16 Days of Activism campaign (25 November – 10 December) to tackle gender-based violence.

The campaign starts today (Wednesday 25 November) on International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women.

Sandwell’s local 16 Days of Action campaign highlights a specific issue each day including domestic abuse, sexual violence, forced marriage, so-called ‘honour’-based abuse, female genital mutilation, stalking and harassment.

Whilst women and girls are overwhelmingly the victims of these crimes, men can be victims too. It is important to know that help and support is available for all victims.

Anyone at risk of domestic abuse or sexual violence during the current coronavirus restrictions is being reassured that help is at hand. It’s important to know that victims can still leave their homes to get help and support without breaking the current restrictions.

Domestic abuse and sexual violence support services continue to operate, providing safety advice and emotional support to those at risk.

Domestic abuse isn’t always physical. Coercive control is an act or a pattern of acts of assault, threats, humiliation and intimidation or other abuse that is used to harm, punish, or frighten a victim.

The partnership is sharing Tina’s Story at to help other families. Tina was murdered by her partner in 2017. Her partner had subjected her to years of abuse and controlling behaviour. He was jailed for life for a minimum of 24 years for her murder.

How do you know if this is happening to you?
Some common examples of coercive behaviour by perpetrators:
• Isolating you from friends and family
• Depriving you of basic needs, such as food
• Monitoring your time
• Monitoring you via online communication tools or spyware
• Taking control over aspects of your everyday life, such as where you can go, who you can see, what you can wear and when you can sleep
• Depriving you access to support services, such as medical services
• Repeatedly putting you down, such as saying you’re worthless
• Humiliating, degrading or dehumanising you
• Controlling your finances
• Making threats or intimidating you.

Useful contacts
Black Country Women’s Aid can provide support to victims of domestic abuse and sexual violence.
• Call the 24-hour helpline on 0121 552 6448
• Text or WhatsApp on 07384 466 181 (9am-9pm, Monday-Friday)
• Call 999 in an emergency
• If you are worried about your behaviour towards others, call the Respect Helpline on 0808 802 4040
For more information, visit

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