The one thing the team want you to know
The cost of living crisis is hitting not only the unwaged or very low waged, it also presents serious challenge for those who are in work and not on benefits. These families are left without support and have to make hard choices between heating homes and taking part in wellbeing activities. We are used to working with those most in need, but have seen dramatic increase in some group members having to chose to stay away rather than ask for additional help. We look at all ways to address this, even if its only access to hot drinks and snacks.
We have a current programme, working with the disability community, to enable them to access water based activities on Plymouth Sound. This programme started last year and was very popular in the summer post lock down, but has shown a reduced attendance over the winter as the financial crisis has started to hit.
The overall programme is free to participants at point of delivery, funded by other charities or our club funds. We do however often meet in a local cafe either before or after sessions to offer both social or emotional support to participants. The cost of refreshments has to be met by individuals, as it was not included in any previous grant applications.
We have recently noticed that a number of group members have started arriving later or leaving early, or even just standing outside, rather than becoming involved in the ‘cafe’ session. After some careful discussion, it became clear that a key issue that the affordability of even a cup of coffee could be the difference between someone feeling able to participate or staying away.
The support of the social and emotional needs of the group are key to elements of our work and we have found yet another finance barrier to participation. This is a barrier we need to remove asap in order to maintain the involvement of those most isolated or at risk. In the future, we will look at including this cost within any larger grant applications, but it was not seen as so critical when we made application for this activity back in 2020.
Now there is clearly identified need for a short term ‘fix’ that enables an inclusive offer to me made to all participants, rather than some sort of means tested provision that will only stigmatize and further isolate members of this already disadvantaged community.
The success criteria will be quite basic. If we can offer free hot drinks and shacks to all of the group, which numbers about 25 people, and we get a significant return to participation, particularly from those who have become distant, we will have addressed the need and have the ability to engage people in conversation about their situation and how we can provide support. It would also be appropriate to include our volunteers into the process, as some of them are also finding that volunteering is now becoming a cost in more than time.
Funding needed £3600
What group or groups of people will the project be working with and why?
We work with a community of specific need. This is a group of disabled people, with both obvious physical but also emotional trauma, who come from across the city. One of their greatest needs is to associate with others who have similar conditions, whilst taking part in activities that are seen as quite challenging to even the able bodied. Whilst this may not be a small geographic community, it is specifically targeted at a vulnerable minority within the city. Members of the group are already becoming ambassadors and reaching out to other isolated individuals who dont actually feel part of any community.
What areas will the project be working in?1 neighbourhood
As indicated above, the community of ‘interest/need’ may come from across the city, but we will work from one point, our delivery base at Mount Batten, where we can access cafe facilities.
What is the group or organisations track record? Track record:
Been going for a few years
How new is the idea? Experimentation:
New, adapting something similar
Salaries & peoples time 0%
Project costs 100%
IT spend 0%
Core costs 0%
We are currently working with:
Improving Lives Plymouth
Veterans support services
Help for Hero’s
Royal Yachting Association Sailability Charity
Marjon University Students