Homelessness Reduction Act – Partnership Event

Major Changes to Sandwell Council’s Homelessness Service are being introduced as part of the Homelessness Reduction Act 2017, due to come into force in April 2018.  This will transform the services provided to people who are homeless or threatened with homelessness.

At the heart of the legislation are new duties to assess all eligible applicants cases and agree a personalised plan.

If you are interested in learning more about the changes or the role you and your team will have come April 2018, please feel free to attend our Partnership Event on 1 March 2018 at the Brasshouse Community Centre, Brasshouse Lane, Smethwick, B66 1BA, 9am till 1pm.

Please contact Lisa Ellis on 0121 569 6980 or via email at for further information or to register your attendance.

People’s Postcode Trusts – Reminder

People’s Postcode Trust, Postcode Local Trust and Postcode Community Trust are now  open for applications until the 28th February!

• People’s Postcode Trust seeks applications for projects that focus on the prevention of poverty, promotion of human rights and equal rights.
• Postcode Local Trust supports community gardens, play areas, wildlife and green energy projects.
• Postcode Community Trust focuses on grass-roots sports, arts, recreation and healthy living programmes.

Charities and community groups are invited to complete a Stage 1 Expression of Interest for project grants. Good causes can apply for grants of between £500 and £20,000. Only registered charities can apply for over £2,000.

The outcome of the Stage 1 application will be communicated by no later than Wed 28th March, with those shortlisted to Stage 2 having until 11th April to complete a full application.

For more information on how to apply for funding, please visit the Trusts’ websites:
People’s Postcode Trust 
People’s Postcode Local
People’s Postcode Community Trust

Please do feel free to also share this information amongst your network in the not-for-profit sector.

Whilst all receive funding from players of People’s Postcode Lottery, People’s Postcode Trust, Postcode Local Trust and Postcode Community Trust are separate organisations.

Players of People’s Postcode Lottery have raised more than £272 million to date for over 4,000 good causes across Great Britain and internationally. As a charity lottery, a minimum of 32% goes directly to charities.


Your town, your future…be part of Vision 2030

Get involved in Town Events to share your ideas and comments about towns plans and how they are developed.

About the event:
• Find out how town plans in your local area are progressing
• How you contribute to Sandwell’s Vision for 2030

If you’re a business, partner, voluntary organisation or local resident we want to hear from you.
• What are the key achievements we need to deliver?
• What are the barriers we need to overcome?
• What are your key inputs to make this a reality?

Event Dates:

Rowley Regis
Blackheath Library, 145 High St,
Rowley Regis B65 0EA
Tuesday 27 February 2018
4.00pm – 6.00pm

Dorothy Parkes Centre, Church Rd,
Smethwick B67 6EH
Thursday 1 March 2018
2.00pm – 4.00pm

Wednesbury Library
Walsall Street, Wednesbury WS10 9EH
Thursday 8 March 2018
4.00pm – 6.00pm

West Bromwich
Yemeni Centre, Tildasley St,
West Bromwich B70 9SJ
Friday 9 March 2018
2.00pm – 4.00pm

Sandwell Christian Centre, Langley
Crescent Oldbury, West Midlands, B68 8RE
Wednesday 14 March 2018
2:00pm – 4:00pm

Jubilee Centre, Tipton DY4 0NA
Tuesday 20 March 2018
1.30pm – 3.30pm

For more information, and to confirm your attendance, please email:

Masterclass: Speaking with IMPACT!

The Nishkam Centre is an aspiring leading community anchor organisation to all communities, working for the wellbeing of everyone. We are ASPIRE to become a BEACON for others…

This Masterclass – Speaking with IMPACT! is about taking your speaking to a Global Level.

Covering TED-Talk Techniques!!!

Speaking with Impact is about How to Deliver a Speech which:
– People will Act On
– Changes Peoples Mind-sets
– Makes People Think
– Creates a Positive Change
– Reaches People at an Emotional Level
– Stays with people long after they’ve left the stage

Professional Trainer, Dr Arpinder Kaur Bansi – Dip. Personal Performance Coaching

£65 – Limited Spaces!

Wednesday 28th February 2018, 5pm to 8.30pm at the Nishkam Centre, 6 Soho Road, Handsworth, Birmingham, B21 9BH.

Get in touch with Serina Kaur Jabbal, Learning and Development Lead, to reserve your place now! Call 0121 515 4229 or email us

Sandwell Big Spring Clean campaign

Over the past 12 years over 20,000 people have supported and helped to make Sandwell a cleaner and safer place to live by taking part in the boroughs multi award winning Big Spring Clean campaign. This year’s kicks off on 2nd March and runs through until September 2018.

The campaign is a firm favourite with volunteers across Sandwell. In previous year’s schools, community groups, residents, places of worship, council staff and local businesses have litter picked, planted and painted to make the borough beautiful.

Local parks, community buildings and more importantly your neighbourhoods all have
benefited from the campaign.

Due to popular demand, Litter Watch has extended the campaign to accommodate events over a 6-month period, making it our biggest clean up ever.

Tipton Litter Watch would like more people to get involved in 2018 than ever before. Can you help them achieve its goal?9+

Tipton Litter Watch can support you with everything from providing equipment and a member of the Litter Watch team. All it needs from you is a helping hand getting your family, friends and neighbourhood involved.

If you would like to take part as a volunteer, please contact Tipton Litter Watch on 0121 557 6970 or email

National Careers and Apprenticeship Week: 5 – 9 March

Connexions Sandwell will be hosting a National Careers and Apprenticeship Week from Monday 5th to Friday 9th March 2018, (excluding Wednesday), at Oldbury Council House, One Stop Shop, Freeth Street, B69 3DE. The daily fixture will be from 10 am to 4 pm.

Careers Advisers and Opportunity Providers will have plenty of advice on a variety of options including apprenticeships, traineeships, jobs and college courses. There will be help with CV writing and interview skills too.

Wednesday, 7th March 2018 is National Apprenticeship Day
Over 20 Opportunity Providers will be at the Town Hall, High Street, West Bromwich, 4 pm to 6 pm. Why not go along and use the occasion to find enquire about an exciting apprenticeship!

For more information about either event contact Connexions on 0121 569 2955.

New Pharmaceutical Needs Assessment (PNA) Consultation

Sandwell Health and Wellbeing Board (HWB) is developing a new Pharmaceutical Needs Assessment (PNA). This is a statutory Health and Wellbeing Board responsibility, as set out under the NHS (Pharmaceutical Services and Local Pharmaceutical Services) Regulations 2013.

As part of the development process, the Regulations require that the HWB undertakes a formal 60-day consultation on a draft of its PNA. Taking this into account, you are invited to participate in this consultation, which will run from Thursday 15th February to Monday 16th April 2018.

The website contains the following:
PNA 2018 – Draft for Consultation and supporting appendices
Privacy statement that we urge you to read, and
A link to the consultation survey containing 12 questions.

This is for anyone who would be interested in getting involved via your patient participations groups, your website, social media streams, newsletters, blogs etc.

To limit environmental impact, no paper copies have been produced. If, as a stakeholder of the HWB, you are forwarding this email onto groups whose service users or customers may not have access to the internet, or want to share the poster in a public space, please see attached pdf document with information on the PNA and how they can get in touch. Below is a plain English form of words that can be used across your online platforms.

‘Sandwell is refreshing its pharmaceutical needs assessment (PNA). The PNA provides vital information that helps us plan the running of community pharmacies for local people and is a way of making sure that pharmacies across Sandwell are providing the right services in the right locations to support our residents. Sandwell Health and Wellbeing Board would like to know what you think of the assessment. Please click here to answer a short questionnaire. Deadline is 16th April 2018’

All feedback will be considered and a consultation report will be included in the final PNA documents which will give an overview of the feedback received and set out how this has impacted the final document.

The Health and Wellbeing Board look forward to receiving your feedback.

Sean Dolan Close – Community Garden

Are you interested in joining the Sean Dolan Close Community Group?
Are you interested in gardening?
Do you have a talent, skill or trade that you could share with the group to help us enhance our local area?

Residents of Bromford Housing have come together to form a ‘new community group’ to develop a community garden in the Close on the land by the pumping station. The group will be the driving force to improve and increase local opportunities for gardening in Sean Dolan Close, organise and develop a range of community activities, to bring people of all ages together to have fun and enjoy the space around them.

We are seeking community minded individuals from the close to join us in creating our community garden or on our committee (on a voluntary basis). Don’t worry no prior experience is necessary and you can give as little or as much time as you can spare.

We would love to hear from you if you’d like to get involved, want to find out more information or if you have any ideas you would like to share with us.

Michelle, your Neighbourhood Coach text or call on 07540677772 or join our Facebook group ‘Sean Dolan Community Group’ for more information.

Asda to Give £20m to FareShare and Trussell Trust

Asda has said it will give at least £20m to food distribution charities FareShare and the Trussell Trust as part of a drive to help a million people out of food poverty.

The partnership will enable the two charities to boost their infrastructure and provide an additional 24 million meals every year, and give 500,000 more people access to fresh food in the UK.

Asda’s investment will also fund support services in food banks, such as debt counselling and job advice.

The retailer has also committed to making sure all its shops can donate surplus food to food banks by 2020.

Lindsay Boswell, chief executive of FareShare UK, said: “I believe that Asda’s investment in tackling hunger and food waste in support of front line charities has the potential to create such a multiplier effect that it could well be the largest single act of support since the creation of the National Lottery or the introduction of Gift Aid.”

Sam Stapley, head of operations for the Trussell Trust England, said: “The scale and nature of this funding is unprecedented. Asda’s investment means they can expand their reach and develop new projects bringing very real, tangible benefits to local communities and to anyone struggling with food insecurity in a way that simply has not been possible before.”

Andy Murray, Asda’s chief customer officer, said: “We simply cannot – and will not – accept food being wasted whilst people in our communities go hungry. We’ve listened to our customers and want to take on their challenge to fight hunger and create change.”

Source: Civil Society

Daniel Fluskey: Why There are Some Donations That You Just Don’t Want

Earlier this month the Presidents Club came under fire for hosting an all-male fundraising dinner where hostesses were said to have been sexually harassed. Dan Fluskey, head of policy and external affairs at the Institute of Fundraising, looks at why charities should sometimes decline gifts.

You’re a charity. Your only reason to exist is to make a positive difference in the world. To do that, you need money – to fund your services, pay your staff (if you have them), to host a website. So when someone gives you a donation, the first thing you think about is how you can use that money to do something good for your cause and beneficiaries. The last thing you want to do is refuse that money, or give it back.

But, of course, nothing is that simple. What if accepting that money, which you can put to such valuable use, has a knock on impact and leads to consequences which could seriously affect your charity. What if accepting the donation, and because of the association of who’s donated it, or how it was raised, means that two of your long term major donors (who give more than the value of the particular donation you’ve accepted) decides they no longer want to be involved with you. Or the commercial partnership you’ve been working on with a company suddenly falls through. And after the weekend you come back to the office and realise that a number of your volunteers don’t want to come back, and some of your regular supporters have cancelled their direct debits.

How do you weigh up the benefits?
These considerations (and many more!) will have been going through the heads of trustees, CEOs, fundraising directors and staff at the charities who had received money from the Presidents Club. Quick decisions were needed, the media spotlight was firmly on them. But how do you go about making that decision? How can you weigh up the benefit of the money received which is tangible (a real amount, in your bank account) while playing through the hypothetical (but possible) scenarios?

Well, you know what – it is not easy. And, part of why it’s tricky is because, at the end there is no definitive right or wrong answer. There is a trustee board, supported by their teams, trying to make the right decision for their charity. Other people – commentators, tweeters, TV presenters – might have a view, but the only people that make the decision are in that charity, and their only duty is to the best interests of the charity and cause.

I’ve spoken to a number of charities over the last week or so, and we’ve all done the ‘what would you have done in their position’ game. I think nearly all said they would have refused a donation from the Presidents Club, but not all would have returned past ones – mainly because the money would have been spent and isn’t there to return! It was interesting to see the results of the public poll from Yougov commissioned by NCVO with Peter Kellner discussing the results here Just 20 per cent of the public think the charities should give the money back. A sizeable majority, 67 per cent say they should keep the donations. (The remaining 13 per cent don’t know.) So, it seems that two thirds of people would back charities if they didn’t return the donations. That’s useful to know as a gauge of public opinion, but it is not necessarily the determining factor. Public polling informs what charities do, but shouldn’t dictate it. It will be one of the things that charities think about as they consider what’s in their overall best interests.

To read the full Civil Society article click here.

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