The three Groups shortlisted in both the West and North Membership Regions are:
West Membership Region (Postcodes DG, FK, KA, G, ML)
Glasgow East End Community Carers was formed in 1992 by a group of local people, who had experience of having to care for someone. The group recognised that carers need support, information and advice to allow them to continue in their caring role and they provide this through offering services and support in their ‘Carers Hub’. This includes activities which improve physical, emotional and mental well-being, provide a break from caring, help to reduce stress and build resilience. The Community Connect award will be used to enable carers to attend workshops and support groups which teach stress management and relaxation techniques, helping them to continue caring and reduce pressure on health and social work services.
West Dunbartonshire Community Foodshare was formed in 2013 in order to help people, who are experiencing food poverty. Alongside distributing food, toiletries, toys and uniforms to people in immediate need, they also work with agencies, who can provide longer term support. In addition, they are planning to run a ‘cooking and growing’ project which enables people to learn how to grow their own food and cook healthy meals on a budget. The Community Connect award will be used to commence weekly cooking sessions for people experiencing financial hardship. The participants will then hold a ‘community meal’ for their friends and family and be able to keep the cooking equipment they have been using, so that they can continue to use their new skills at home.
Street Connect are based in Glasgow and support disadvantaged individuals dealing with drug/alcohol addictions and related life-controlling issues such as mental health, homelessness and isolation. Volunteers at their Outreach Cafes offer a friendly welcome, a listening ear and information on the range of services available which includes one-to-one consultations, group work to gain new skills and rehabilitation support. The aim is to empower people to overcome their life controlling issues and have a better quality of life. The Community Connect award will be used to refurbish the Glasgow city centre Outreach Cafe improving the premises and the services available within it. This includes improving disabled access, decorating and purchasing new equipment.
North Membership Region (PH, AB, IV, KW, DD)
Highland Cycle Ability Centre, based near Inverness, provides a cycling service aimed predominately at youngsters and young adults with physical or learning disabilities. Specially trained and qualified staff welcome over 2,500 people per year to use specially adapted cycling equipment on a purpose built, safe and secure cycling track. In addition, they operate an outreach service, taking the cycling equipment across the North of Scotland to those who cannot travel to the cycling track. The Community Connect award will support the extension of the outreach programme over the next two years and ‘take the track’ to people who will benefit from the service.
Positive Steps Initiatives, based in Dundee, have the overall aim of reducing homelessness in the community. Tailored support services are provided to vulnerable individuals, with a focus on helping those individuals develop skills that will enable them to sustain/maintain a tenancy within their communities. The service supports over 500 individuals annually who face barriers to living independently which include having physical/learning difficulties, experiencing hardship and suffering abuse/violence. The Community Connect award will help provide a much needed outreach service which will provide female hygiene products to women who are facing mental health and/or substance abuse problems. The outreach programme will also extend to schools within Dundee to enable young women and girls to benefit from the service.
Alyth Youth Partnership, based in Perthshire, provide clubs and activities for young people aged 9 – 25 in both Alyth and the surrounding areas. The group run activities every weeknight, provide support in schools and run holiday programmes for young people from a wide range of backgrounds including those with additional support needs. Their aim is to promote social inclusion, address anti-social behaviour and encourage young people to take pride in their community. The Community Connect award will be used to fund an arts project which gives young people the opportunity to identify ‘What Makes Alyth’ for them through the use of music, photography, spoken word, dance and art.