Stuart Ashmore

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Sandwell Safer 6: Help keep children safe online – FREE webinar (Dec 1st)

If you are a parent or carer, do you know what your children are doing online?

Sandwell Council’s Prevent Team are taking part in Sandwell’s Safer 6 campaign by offering FREE online safety (Extremism) and Prevent sessions. Parents/carers and adult members of the community can join the free online session on Thursday, 1st December 2022 and receive tips and advice to keep young people safe online.

Top tips include:

  • Turn on filters/parent control settings
  • Set accounts on private and report any issues through the apps
  • Be ‘share aware’
  • Keep up to date with online safety – the online world changes quickly
  • Know where to access further support

Parents are encouraged to talk openly to their children about their online activity and help them understand what is safe and unsafe. The internet is a great tool, but can also be a tricky place to navigate with some misleading information.

The sessions will be delivered on Microsoft Teams and will provide key information on popular apps and social media, as well as links for further advice and support. If you need help to get onto Microsoft Teams, please email or call 07717 427057.

Sandwell Council’s Prevent team, which works with partners and communities to stop people being drawn into extremism and terrorism, will also be explaining what Prevent is and how to report concerns.

The session time is as follows:

  • Thursday, 1st December 2022: 9.30 – 10.30am

For more information and to join at one of the times above, please visit ->


‘Partnership Working for Impact’ – Sandwell Consortium: Impact Report 2021-22

“Partnership working for impact”… that’s the ethos of Sandwell Consortium – a unique partnership of ten established and reputable organisations, each of which represent the diverse communities they serve.

In its 2021-22 Impact report, you can read how the Consortium and its partners supported Sandwell residents through a range of community-based services – including the Sandwell Language Network, advice and advocacy, employment and skills and health and wellbeing.

The report offers a significant snapshot of the Consortium’s work, together with some first-hand feedback from those supported by delivery.

You can download a copy of the report HERE.

To find out more, contact Sandwell Consortium on 0121 533 2688 or

Almost one in four usual residents of Sandwell were born outside the UK (Census data)

Many of you may recall the Census that took place last year, an event that has taken place once a decade since the first one in 1801 (apart from 1941).

It’s the only time that every person and household is counted in England and Wales (with Scotland now conducting its own census) and it remains the largest single source of social statistics (in England and Wales).

The first set of data was released on 28th June 2022 and further data will be released every two to three weeks throughout autumn and winter 2022.

The most recent release covers demography and migration data, and includes household composition, country of birth and migration.

Did you know, for example, that:

  • There are 130,246 households with residents in Sandwell, a rise of 7.2% since 2011
  • (in 2021), 38,042 households in Sandwell are made up of only one person
  • 47,670 usual residents (13.9%) held a non-UK passport; one of the most common non-UK passports held was Polish (6,860, 2.0% of all usual residents).

Data like this is invaluable for a whole variety of reasons, but it’s particularly helpful when submitting background and context to funding applications for voluntary and community organisations … and your local repository of such information is Sandwell Trends.

There is a wealth of statistical information about Sandwell, not just census data, that’s available to support such applications including profiles for each of Sandwell’s six towns.

And, of course, SCVO is here to help you make sense of some of that data in relation to your funding applications – drop us a line to: or call us on 0121 525 1127 to find out more.


Holiday Activities and Food (HAF) Conference – You Are Invited

The Holiday Activities and Food (HAF) programme offers free holiday activities, including healthy food, to children and young people across the UK.

In Sandwell we have already had great success in delivering over the Easter, Summer and Winter periods.

To celebrate this, and to give our HAF programme providers more opportunities, we are holding a HAF Conference on Monday 28 November at The West Bromwich Albion Football Ground from 9.30am – 3pm 

The conference will give you the opportunity to network with other organisations, participate in workshops that support you in strengthening your provision and celebrate all the hard work and successes of the past 2 years.

It’s also an opportunity for potential NEW providers to find out more about the programme and how to be a part of it.

Please register your interest in attending the Conference by completing the following form:

There’s also a further opportunity to be a part of the Marketplace at the event – where you can network with current and future HAF providers to offer additional resources and build connections for signposting. The aim is to build a local network of organisations that can support each other to deliver a strong provision for children, young people and the families of the Sandwell community.

You can register your Marketplace Expression of Interest at:

Creating an Active Black Country

New strategy to unite the Black Country to create active, healthier people and places

  • Active Black Country have launched their new strategy which sees a future Black Country where all ages, abilities and backgrounds are able to be active, move and play sport.
  • The Creating an Active Black Country strategy is underpinned by a People Plan which focuses on supporting the Black Country Physical Activity Workforce, the local leaders who will deliver the strategy.
  • Active Black Country believes that physical activity and sport has the power to change and improve people’s lives and every person living in the Black Country has a right to lead an active lifestyle on their terms.
  • Find out more at

Active Black Country have launched their new strategy which sees a future Black Country where all ages, abilities and backgrounds are able to be more active, move and play sport. Creating an Active Black Country seeks to unite all people and partners who have a role to play in tackling the inequalities that prevent Black Country people from being active.

Creating an Active Black Country is underpinned by a People Plan which focuses on supporting the Black Country Physical Activity Workforce, the local leaders who will deliver the strategy, from building capacity and providing careers development to building confidence and opportunities for community leaders to collaborate.

Amanda Tomlinson, Chair of the Active Black Country Board said: “The benefits of being active are clear, increased activity and movement levels improve health and well-being and build confidence. That can be simply getting out and taking a short walk or participating in your local communities sports team.

“Our vision of a future Black Country where everyone is able to be more active and move, will be delivered through our new People Plan that will support and develop our local leaders who are already inspiring and motivating our communities.

“Working collaboratively with all our partners we aim to get the Black Country moving and ensure everyone in the Black Country can lead a healthy lifestyle.”

Creating an Active Black Country delivers against six key objectives including:

  • Increase activity levels across the least active to support good mental and physical health and reduce inequalities in activity levels.
  • Increase the diverse range of physical assets, networks, facilities and places that can get people active supporting wider health outcomes.
  • Champion and advocate the role being active can play in contributing to wider outcomes across the health system and tackling health inequalities.
  • Increase the range of opportunities to be active across Black Country communities. Ensuring they are inclusive, attainable and support stronger, better connected, resilient communities.
  • Provide Young People the best start in life through a range of varied and diverse opportunities to be active.
  • Lead the development of a ‘People Plan’ for the Black Country to inspire, motivate and guide others to be active and support the development of sport.

Responding to the importance of the Strategy for children and young people, Billie Downie, Headteacher Streetly Academy said: “To overcome the significant challenges of adult activity levels we have to focus on this generation. Through delivering this Strategy we want all children and young people in the Black Country to enjoy being active when in school and out of school, helping them develop a lifelong habit of physical activity. Helping them to protect their futures.”

Aiesha Turner, Senior Social Prescriber, Integrated Plus Dudley, went on to comment: “Research clearly demonstrates the positive link between being active and moving more with physical and mental well-being. We must build on the foundations already in place in health care settings to create pathways that can be made available for all Black Country residents.”

Change in physical activity levels across the Black Country is a long-term endeavour. Active Black Country will review the Creating an Active Black Country strategy in 2 years and use the collective learning to shape and inform future versions.

Find out more at
Follow Active Black Country on Facebook – @ActiveBlackCountry; Twitter – @bcbeactive; Instagram – @activeblackcountry; YouTube – Active Black Country.

Can you offer a ‘Warm Space’ to your local community? Small grants available now

Vision 2030 sets out the ambitions towards making Sandwell (in 2030) a thriving, optimistic and resilient community. Central to this vision is the message of closer partnership working between all sectors and communities across the borough.

SCVO, is a local charity working across the borough of Sandwell with a mission to help local residents and communities access support, which enables them to take greater control of their lives, overcome challenges and make the most of opportunities available to them.

SCVO is delivering this grant programme, on behalf of and in partnership with Sandwell Metropolitan Borough Council, to enable voluntary and community groups to deliver activities in Sandwell, and to Sandwell residents, to support the following priority:

Purpose of the Fund – Sandwell Warm Spaces

To provide a network of Warm Spaces during colder weather, which are accessible to all members of the community and offer the following as a minimum:

  • A warm (min 18 degrees Celsius) and accessible indoor space with comfortable seating areas
  • Adequately staffed and insured
  • Free warm drinks
  • Stock of written resources offering advice on keeping warm, tackling cost of living etc. (provided by SMBC and others)
  • Regular completion and return of simple statistics regarding usage (of warm space)
  • Adherence to the Sandwell Warm Spaces Charter (See Appendix 2 of the Guidance Notes)

You may choose to offer additional, optional services (including food provision – free or paid), advice sessions, educational or creative activities, entertainment (e.g. movie showings), but these will need to be specified in your application separately from the minimum warm space offer.

Projects that are successfully awarded funding for this theme will be expected to be able to deliver their warm space by the 31st October 2022 at the latest and continue for the period specified in the application (to a maximum of 31st March 2023).

To apply, download the following documents:

Please ensure you read the Guidance Notes IN FULL, as they contain important information about the minimum levels of commitment required to apply for funding, and then submit your completed Application Form to:

Community Asset Transfer Opportunities in Sandwell

Community Asset Transfer – Expression of Interests Required to manage and develop three Community Centres in Sandwell.


The council would be interested to hear from community based organisations that are interested in exploring the potential of Asset Transfer of the following local Community Centres:

Charlemont Community Centre – Beaconview Road – West Bromwich B71 3PJ




Cradley Heath Community Centre – Reddal Hill Road – Cradley Heath B64 4JG



Hurst Road Community Centre – Hurst Road – Smethwick B67 6ND



Asset Transfer is the transfer of land, buildings or structures owned by a public body to community/voluntary groups or social enterprises via a lease arrangement. That group or organisation then becomes responsible for running, managing, and maintaining the asset, including all the associated costs.

Interested organisations will need to demonstrate a track record in delivering community based services, building management and the ability to attract external resources/funding.

If you think this is something your organisation would be interested in, and would like additional information, please contact Nick Garratt (Sandwell MBC) M: 07859034087, E:

Could You Offer A Work Experience Placement?

Sandwell College is seeking work placements for its students as part of their study programme.

Work Experience

All 16-19-year-old students on full-time study programmes are either required or encouraged to complete a high-quality work experience as part of their programme.

At Sandwell College, we aspire to provide work experience of 30 hours to all our students where possible, giving them the opportunity to work in a genuine workplace environment, developing their employability and industry skills. As a young person, they gain essential skills required for their future career or further study.

Sandwell College courses are designed to give our students the skills for modern workplaces.


What are the benefits for you as an employer?

By offering a work experience, you can benefit from:

  • Opportunities to trial the abilities of a potential employee or apprentice
  • Working with students who are interested in working in your line of business and the ability to set them specific projects
  • Flexible placements – you can vary them to suit your particular business needs and come in all shapes and sizes
  • Attracting new skills and fresh perspectives from students that may benefit your business
  • Promotion of your business
  • Working with the college to develop programmes of study for your sector/business
  • Benefiting from the knowledge and enthusiasm that students can bring

This could have a positive impact on your business as they put relevant skills learnt in your specific industry sector into practice and develop as potential employees to help your business grow.


How can you get involved?

We work with employers who can offer our students 30 hours’ work experience or a group of students who can work on a project.

All of our employers are key to our future workforce and by providing work experience or working with Sandwell College, you are helping to build the skills of future employees. It will allow you to trial the abilities of a potential employee, meaning you can vary them to suit your particular business needs.

We are always looking for industry experts to share their experiences with our students, either at the College, or better still, at your premises. It all helps to develop our learners’ employability skills, which in turn benefits business.

We are seeking employers who can support Sandwell College by providing work experience for students in all subject areas. These include but are not exclusively:

  • Art, Design & Media
  • Business & IT
  • Construction; Engineering and all Dry trades
  • Hair, Beauty, Make-up and Production Arts
  • Motor Vehicle
  • Sport
  • Travel & Tourism
  • Sciences (all sectors)
  • Health and Safety

We appreciate that not all employers are able to provide the full 30 hours’ work experience but if you are interested in working with Sandwell College. We would love to hear from you.

If you can offer work experience relevant to one of these subject areas, or if you have any questions, please contact: Stuart Williams, Work Experience Officer: T – 0121 667 5074 E –


FREE Lunchtime Briefing Event – LawWorks: Pro Bono Legal Support

SCVO is very pleased to be able to bring you this lunchtime briefing event to introduce the services of LawWorksa charity working in England and Wales to connect volunteer lawyers with people in need of legal advice, who are not eligible for legal aid and cannot afford to pay and with the not-for-profit organisations that support them.

This session, on Thursday, 13th October 2022 from 12 noon to 1 pm, is particularly looking at the pro bono support offer that is available to not-for-profit organisations (as opposed to individuals).

You’ll hear from LawWorks about this programme and the support/resources available, which include:

  1. Free videos, memos and FAQs on common legal issues – a range of short online videos presented by solicitors that cover common legal issues faced by small not-for-profit organisations. The videos are all free to watch and aim to help you when making important decisions. There is also a range of other legal resources to help answer some frequently asked questions that are received from charities and not-for-profit organisations.
  2. Free legal assistance for not-for-profits – this programme brokers legal advice on a wide range of legal issues to small not-for-profit organisations meeting our eligibility criteria.

It can find a solicitor for your not-for-profit organisation, either for:

  • A one-off legal issue (like drafting a contract, reviewing a lease, updating a constitution/articles, or clarifying rights in a commercial dispute); or
  • A longer-term basis (to carry out a review of the organisation’s documents, identify potential legal issues, and be a first port of call for legal queries).

To book your FREE ticket, visit:

Get Grants Celebrate their 10th Anniversary!

To celebrate their 10th anniversary, Get Grants are offering, throughout October 2022, a programme of FREE online events, discounts, and giveaways.

This includes 10 New FREE Introductory Fundraising Workshops and 25% off across all Training Course bookings throughout September and October.

All of the Get Grants 10th Anniversary events are FREE and can be booked via Eventbrite.

We would also love for you to join us at our Special Get Grants 10th Anniversary Get Together in-person event in Birmingham on 15th November 2022.

You can find out mores information by visiting:

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Contact Us

Tel: 0121 525 1127

1st Floor, Landchard House
Victoria Street, West Bromwich
B70 8ER