A revealing report has given an insight into the quality of life of those living in Lancashire, including community groups and their beneficiaries.
The Community Foundation for Lancashire specialises in advising and managing strategic charitable giving for businesses, individuals and families seeking to invest in local causes. In 2018/19 it was responsible for distributing £726,325 to grassroots community groups, projects and services across the county.
Each year the Community Foundation commissions an annual needs assessment, known as Vital Signs, that investigates the vitality of the county and shines a spotlight on some of the dedicated community groups striving to make Lancashire a better place to live, work and thrive.
Among the findings revealed by those residents surveyed for the report included the following:
The Vital Signs report also features case studies, with organisations and individuals that have benefitted from funding from the Community Foundation for Lancashire discussing how grants they received have had a transformative impact on the lives of many.
Blackpool-based UR Potential received £9,988 from the Community Foundation’s Lancashire Women’s Fund for its ‘Girls Matter’ project that focused on women and girls’ safety; including activities such as self-defence training and health and wellbeing exercises.
Nicola Danber, who has benefited from the programme, said: “I’m a young carer for my Mum and coming to UR Potential helps because I can come and take respites and speak to people about being a carer that actually listen and understand what you are going through.
“The Girls Matter project teaches self-defence and mental resilience and has really helped my confidence, anxiety and I feel safer.”
The Vital Signs report features interviews with a care and bereavement support group in Thornton Cleverley; Burnley Youth Theatre’s 50/50 volunteering initiative for young people; an education organisation helping improve wellbeing and employment prospects for adults with disabilities; Pendle Women’s Forum that provides a befriending service for elderly women and BAMER communities.
Rae Brooke, Community Foundation for Lancashire Chief Executive, said: “In the last financial year, the Community Foundation has worked hard to award over £726,000 through 194 grants. With the help of our donors we have been able to impact and improve 45,000 people’s lives.
“Yet, each year demand for funding outweigh supply. In Lancashire we were unable to fund over 45% of all the applications we receive. Each application we cannot support is potentially a missed opportunity to address a hidden need in the local community. As long as disadvantage continues to exist in our community, our work is not done.”
To read the Community Foundation for Lancashire’s interactive copy of its Vital Signs brochure in full, visit: https://issuu.com/info-cflm/docs/vital_signs_lancs_interactive