VCF newsletter No. 21

Doncaster VCF Newsletter

All the latest news and events for Voluntary, Community and Faith sector groups

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Message from Cath Witherington - Chief Officer

Cath Witherington

As this is our first edition in 2021 I feel I should be wishing everyone a Happy New Year. Yet with the pace of change with the pandemic, some shocking global events, Brexit and topped by the snow that has settled this week - the year seems far from being new!  I do think one thing we can be sure of is that this year will continue to be one of challenges!

One of our immediate priorities is to help our NHS colleagues to find volunteers to act as stewards at our 5 vaccination sites across Doncaster.  The logistics of dispensing the vaccine to so many as rapidly as possible in itself is a mammoth task. From what I see and hear, everyone involved is doing a fantastic job! Here in Doncaster we have managed to vaccinate more our high priority residents than in other parts of the country. Those who have already received their first vaccination are grateful and relieved. The plan is for the vaccine to be administered to the top four most vulnerable groups of people by the middle of February:

  1. residents in a care home for older adults and their carers
  2. all those 80 years of age and over and frontline health and social care workers
  3. all those 75 years of age and over
  4. all those 70 years of age and over and clinically extremely vulnerable individuals

So I would ask you to do what you can to discourage people from calling to find out when friends and family in the priority groups can expect to receive their vaccination.  Just like staying home, by not making those calls, people will be helping by allowing NHS colleagues focus on doing the administering rather than administration which will get the job done quicker. 

I’ve included some information about the role of Vaccination Stewards in this  document, as we are looking for volunteers to take on this role as the COVID-19 Vaccination Programme continues to grow. To register interest and availability we are asking people to complete a short form on our Volunteer Hub system. If you have any questions please contact us at

Latest COVID-19 Update From Doncaster Council

You can read the latest update, which includes local data, vaccination FAQs and Local Assistance Schemes by following this link.

COVID-19 Information Translated to Arabic

Please share the following information with anyone in your networks who may find it useful:

Correspondence regarding the current lockdown and vaccine rollout.

Poster from the NHS.

Doncaster VCFS Fund

A group of Voluntary, Community and Faith Sector organisations are coming together to manage a local fund established to distribute locally to help the sector address a range of community needs arising from the COVID-19 restrictions. We want to support organisations in growing and sustaining provision which tackles inequalities, social exclusion, social isolation and loneliness, and especially provide humanitarian support to the most vulnerable and the clinically extremely vulnerable in Doncaster, of which there are approximately 15,500.

We are particularly interested in supporting activities which:

  • help vulnerable people during Covid-19 with basic needs;
  • address social and health inequalities;
  • help alleviate service pressures;
  • strengthen existing community services and support;
  • help people remain safe when providing community services;
  • build capacity within local communities to grow and sustain provision;
  • support to access digital;
  • provide all age wellbeing support including opening access to arts, local culture and heritage activities;
  • offer BAME community support;
  • deliver education and training for VCFS groups;
  • supports carers;
  • deliver unconscious bias and equality and diversity training;
  • develop resources for BAME communities (culturally sensitive information and key messages to be used widely by partners);
  • link communities together to celebrate diversity and encourage community cohesion; and
  • activities which raise awareness around mental health within the community.

We will be considering grants in three bands:

  • Microgrants (up to £750)
  • General Grant (£751 to £5,000)
  • Large Grant (up to £20,000 for max 4 organisation collaborative)

You can find more information about the grants and how to apply on our website.

Virtual Funding Fayre

Here at Voluntary Action Doncaster we are pleased to announce that we will be hosting a virtual funding fayre event on 12th February 2021 in partnership with The National Lottery Community Fund. It will be a zoom event - 11am to 1pm. To book a place, please email us at We will be focusing on funding throughout February and will be posting updates on our social media as well as future editions of this newsletter so please make sure you follow us to find out more!

Cyber and Financial Protection and Fraud Prevention 

Due to the success of our last session, Voluntary Action Doncaster is delighted to host another Zoom session with Dannielle Lee, Cyber Protect Officer and her colleague Andy Foster, Financial Protect Officer, where they will be sharing some really helpful hints and tips about how we can protect ourselves from Cyber and other Financial crimes.

Please join us at 11am on 23 February 2021.  We will finish by 12.30pm.  If you attended the first session, you do not need to attend again as Dannielle and Andy will be sharing similar information.

To book a place in this session, please email

As we’re now more online than ever, the Digital Intelligence and Investigations Team at South Yorkshire Police has developed a really helpful booklet to help people protect themselves from Cyber Crime. You can read and download the Little Book of Cyber Scams and the Little Book of Big Scams which provide information on the different types of cyber and financial crimes and how to protect yourself. Please do share these with colleagues, friends and family, and come along to the session in February to learn more!

Counselling for Military Families

Keeping Families in Mind provides free counselling to families of armed forces personnel, reservists and veterans. You can find out more by having a look at this flyer, visiting the Doncaster Mind website, or by emailing

DRASACS is ready for 2021

“Doncaster Rape & Sexual Abuse Counselling Service (DRASACS) is determined to continue its growth and support even more people than ever before this year. We remained open throughout 2020 to help those who needed us during the various lockdown periods, and we will be doing exactly the same in 2021.

There are various ways to cope with the trauma of current and previous sexual violence. We have a long and successful history of delivering face-to-face therapy, however, what many people may not know is that we also offer the opportunity for Doncaster residents to speak with our qualified therapists in confidence via webcam and telephone free of charge and we have done for several years.

The pandemic led us to offer increased opportunities for clients to work with us via telephone or webcam. Moreover, clients who were initially reluctant to switch from face-to-face have completed their therapy successfully using the phone or webcam.

We would urge anyone who needs our help not to delay accessing support for fear that we have too much demand or that Covid-secure practices won’t work for them – they absolutely will. Please call 01302 341572 or visit to book your first appointment with a therapist and discuss the next steps for you. If you are under 18, someone can call on your behalf.”

tide - together in dementia everyday

“tide (together in dementia everyday) is a UK wide involvement network of carers/former carers and health and care professionals who are working together to build a better future for carers of people living with dementia.

We are determined to change the way that carers are recognised, valued and treated and so we aim to empower, motivate, inform and help carers and give them the skills they need to do that.

tide is a registered charity and the network is free to join.”

You can find out more about tide and the work they do, such as their Carer Development Programme and Zoom Coffee Mornings/These Groups via their information document and their website.

Unpaid Carers Included in Vaccination Priority List

‘Carers UK has welcomed the inclusion of unpaid carers in the publication of new COVID vaccination advice from the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) published on 30.12.2020. This advice recommends that carers who are in receipt of Carer’s Allowance or are the main carer of an elderly or disabled person whose welfare may be at risk if the carer contracted COVID should be included in Priority 6 alongside people with underlying conditions.

When the Government published the priority list for the vaccination on 2 December, carers were missing despite the Green Book, which is commonly used as the standard advice for vaccination, stating that they should be included. Carers UK has been calling for unpaid carers to be included urgently in the priority list. Thousands of carers had told Carers UK this was one of their highest priorities to help them through the pandemic.

Carers UK also welcomes the JCVI guidance that there should be some flexibility in order to minimise wastage of any vaccine. Within this approach, Carers UK recommends that unpaid carers are vaccinated at the same time as the person they care for if they are accompanying the person they care for to an appointment. This would help to achieve the latest JCVI advice on widespread vaccination, as well as providing earlier reassurance for carers and fewer trips to get vaccinated for each person they care for as well as themselves.

References to the JCVI guidance published on 30 December are as follows: In the section, Persons with Underlying Conditions, “Other groups at higher risk, including those who are in receipt of a carer’s allowance, or those who are the main carer of an elderly or disabled person whose welfare may be at risk if the carer falls ill, should also be offered vaccination alongside these groups. Individuals within these risk groups who are clinically extremely vulnerable are discussed separately.”’

Free Online Courses - Level 1 & Level 2

From Free Courses in England: “We have access to a range of fully funded level 2 courses that offer huge advantages, helping you to learn and progress. We want to support you in focusing on retraining or up-skilling, providing you with motivation, job satisfaction, and brand new qualifications.

Online learning gives you the flexibility to study all from the comfort of your own home or office with no strict deadlines or timetabling.

Our free courses are fully accredited by NCFE and successful completers will be awarded a formal qualification. There is a range of courses to choose from including mental health, digital skills, a variety of business workshops and a host of health and social care courses to name a few.

All of these courses are funded meaning there is no cost to you whatsoever. They are an excellent way of providing valuable professional development.”

You can find the full list of courses with further information on the Free Courses in England website.

Data Protection and Coronavirus – Advice for Organisations

“The ICO recognises the unprecedented challenges we are all facing during the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. We understand you might need to continue to share information quickly or adapt the way you work. Data protection will not stop you doing that.

It’s about being proportionate - if something feels excessive from the public’s point of view, then it probably is. Our six data protection steps for organisations sets out the key principles organisations need to consider around the use of personal information.”

You can find out more about this on the ICO website.

Funding Opportunities 

DMBC’s January Funding Newsletter is now available. 

Voluntary Action Doncaster - Volunteer Expenses Fund

Voluntary Action Doncaster has a modest Volunteer Fund. Grants of up to £200.00 can be awarded to enable local people/informal groups to help towards pay for a variety of volunteer expenses including:

  • DBS fees
  • Travel expenses related to the volunteering activity.
  • Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) to enable volunteers to safely carry out their role (for example gloves, face masks, sanitiser stations etc).

Further Guidance is available on our website.

To apply for this grant, please complete this form.

SYCF Community Grants Programme

South Yorkshire’s Community Foundation offers grants between £250 and £5,000 for a wide range of activities. It is intended to support volunteer-led community groups and organisations across South Yorkshire, especially smaller, developing or less well-resourced organisations and grass-roots groups, where small amounts of funding can make a real difference.

They fund organisations trying to have at least one of the following impacts:

  • Improve life skills, education, employability & enterprise
  • Maximise community cohesion & build social capacity
  • Promote reduction of isolation & disadvantage
  • Advance people’s physical health & well-being
  • Connect people will arts, culture & heritage
  • Transform access to and engagement with public spaces & the environment

The next deadline for applications is 2nd February 2021. Further details can be found on their website.

The D’Oyly Carte Charitable Trust

The D’Oyly Carte Charitable Trust funds United Kingdom Registered Charities operating in the UK in the fields of

  • the advancement of the arts
  • health and medical welfare
  • environmental protection or improvement

The grant range they award is usually within £500 – £5,000. The closing date for the next round of funding is 10th February 2021. Information about the application process can be found on their website.

Local Connections Fund

“Book clubs, walking groups and other community projects are now able to apply for the first round of a £4 million fund designed to help reduce loneliness in the coming months.

The Local Connections Fund – made up of £2 million from the Government and £2 million from The National Lottery Community Fund – will be used for hundreds of small grants worth between £300 and £2,500.

These investments are designed to help local organisations bring people and communities together as the country recovers from the coronavirus pandemic.

The Local Connections Fund is split into two rounds of funding – each with its own application window, one in January 2021 and one in the summer 2021.

Funding will be available to small charities and community groups in England with an annual income of £50,000 or less, which are working to reduce loneliness by helping people feel more connected.

The Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport will provide the first round of funding, totalling £2 million, and the applications for this funding will close on 26th January 2021.

Organisations can find more information and apply for this fund via The National Lottery Community Fund. Grants from the first round will be distributed and spent by the end of the financial year.

Job Opportunities 

Communications & Marketing Co-ordinator - SYCF

South Yorkshire’s Community Foundation are looking for a passionate, positive, and experienced individual with communications and/or marketing experience to join their Team. Reporting to the Head of Philanthropy, the job holder will be responsible for developing, and then executing actions to enhance philanthropic giving across South Yorkshire through key messaging, in line with the needs of our valued donors and the communities that SYCF supports.

If you have experience of working in a people related environment or similar, want to work in a community foundation, have gained experience of working in a communication and/or marketing environment, have excellent communication, digital skills, social media, networking, and analytical skills, and are passionate about improving the lives of communities in South Yorkshire, then we would like to hear from you.

This is a full-time role and the deadline for applications is Monday 18th January 2021 at 10AM. You can find more information about the role and how to apply on the SYCF website. 

Social Enterprise Exchange (SEE) Fund Manager - SYCF

Social Enterprise Exchange (SEE) is a programme managed by a consortium of specialist social enterprise support organisations and part funded by the European Union through the Yorkshire and Humber ERDF Programme 2014-2020. SEE provides a comprehensive programme of social enterprise support contributing to jobs, growth and social inclusion across the Sheffield City Region, linked to the Regional Growth Hub. The project will promote social entrepreneurship, through awareness raising events, knowledge exchange and peer networking; it will provide step-up support for start-ups, including hot-desks, start-up grants and mentoring; and it will offer specialist enterprise advice and support for existing social enterprises to grow and to develop new products and services.

The Fund Manager’s role is to assist in the delivery of the Social Enterprise Exchange Programme (SEE) with particular responsibility for the distribution of the South Yorkshire Community Foundation’s funds, SEE grants panels, and DIGITS database, in ways which are comprehensive, fair, and equitable and meet contractual requirements. The successful candidate will work alongside other Fund Managers in the SYCF Grants Team and SEE partners to deliver the programme.

SYCF are looking for someone who has excellent verbal and written communication skills, has experience of managing and distributing community grants; business acumen and used to working as part of a small team are essential, preferably with previous experience of ERDF programmes. This post has been part funded by the European Regional Development Fund as part of Europe’s support for the region’s economic development through the 2014-2020 Yorkshire and Humber ERDF Programme.

You can also find more information about this role and how to apply on the SYCF website.

Gypsy and Traveller Link Worker - Doncaster Clinical Commissioning Group

The CCG is advertising for a Gypsy and Traveller Link Worker. The role will play a significant part in identifying solutions to improve the health and wellbeing of Gypsies and Travellers across our health and social care system in Doncaster. The link to the job listing can be found on their website, please share it with your networks and colleagues who may be able to help the CCG reach out and engage with potential applicants from the Gypsy and Traveller communities.

If anyone wishes to have an informal discussion about the role they should contact: Amy Smith, Senior Communications & Engagement Officer at NHS Doncaster Clinical Commissioning Group, Direct Dial: 01302 566242 or email:

Active Fusion’s Whole Child, Whole School, Whole You Conference

About the event:

Anything is possible you just have to dream big right? However, this generation of children will not reach their dreams if they don’t have healthy bodies and healthy minds. This raw, real-life and energetic conference is for executive principles, headteachers, teachers and anyone in the sport, health and leisure industry that want to do things differently.  How many conferences have you been to, enjoyed but it has resulted in no behaviour change?

Warning: please do not book on unless you want to change the world just a little bit!

All school CEO's, headteachers, teachers and those involved in the education as well as the sport and health sectors are invited to come together and share ideas about driving forward wellbeing for children, staff and yourselves. 

Key Information:

Date: Friday 26th February 2021

Time: (register 9.15) 9.30am – 1pm

Venue: Zoom Virtual

Cost: £25 per person (£30 after 1st February 2021)

Headline Speaker:

We are excited to welcome headline motivational speaker miracle man, Anthony Bennett. Anthony learned how to walk, talk and speak again after contracting three virus infections at the same time. Named as one of the happiest people in the UK and recognised by the Prime Minister for his efforts in enriching the lives of others and making Britain a better place. Anthony will be talking about his journey and what has inspired him to help others achieve their goals no matter what setbacks fall their way.  

To see the schedule and to book on please follow this link:

Conference 2021 - Active Fusion


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