Building Resilience in Sandwell Communities

Building Resilience in Sandwell Communities

As part of its work in supporting Sandwell’s voluntary and community sector, SCVO is pleased to be working in partnership with, and receiving funding from, the Esmée Fairbairn Foundation on a five year programme (June 2018 to May 2023).

The Esmée Fairbairn Foundation aims to improve the quality of life for people and communities throughout the UK both now and in the future. It does this by funding the charitable work of organisations who are building an inclusive, creative and sustainable society.  The Foundation is one of the largest independent grant-makers in the UK.

The funding has been awarded to help build greater long-term resilience within Sandwell’s communities and support residents to use their strengths, skills and assets to co-design activities and deliver them in their local communities.  Such “resilience” may be seen as the (community’s) ability to respond to crises/stress through the involvement and participation of people in ways that strengthen community bonds, resources, and its capacity to cope (‘bounce back’) and move forward.

Before the money was awarded there were two consultation events and a number of conversations with strategic partners, which brought together a huge wave of ideas, visions and aspirations. These consultations have helped to shape the planned programme.  The changes we would like to see as a result of the investment are stronger relationships between community hubs/anchors, residents and leaders, increased resilience and self-reliance and communities using strengths based approaches to tackle challenges and design and own local activities.

There are three strands to the programme:

  • BOUNCE (Building Ownership, Unlocking Networks, Creating Empowerment): working in partnership with existing ‘community anchor/hub’ organisations to use a strengths/asset-based approach to support local communities to design, deliver and own activities for positive change. Over the lifetime of the programme, we will work with a range of organisations, ensuring there is a good spread across Sandwell.
      • To see more information about current/previous ‘Community Anchor Organisation’, click HERE.
  • Large Grants: EPIC (Empowering People in Communities): grant funding launched in February 2019. Extensive community conversations have helped to influence the EPIC grant programme.
      • To see the latest grant awards under this strand, click HERE.
  • Leadership Development Support: for key people engaged through the programme, focusing on emerging community leaders.