VCSA Newsletter Week of 28th February 2022

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Newsletter for the Week of 28th February 2022


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We Want Your Stories!

The VCSA would like to feature your organisation and its successes! 

This newsletter is a great source of information for our members about what's going on in Shropshire, Telford and Wrekin. But too often that information does not include the everyday successes of organisations like yours.

Did you help your community in the recent flooding in Shropshire?

Was your group a lifesaver for people during Covid?

Are your everyday efforts making a difference for people in Shropshire, Telford and Wrekin?

Then we want to tell your story!

Email Insight and VCS Engagement Officer Sarah Hampson to feature your organisation's successes in one of our upcoming newsletters, web features or social media posts.



Survey icon

Complete the 2022 VCSA State of the Sector Survey Today!

Don't wait another minute to have your voice heard in this important survey of the voluntary and community sector in Shropshire, Telford and Wrekin.

Take the survey, and then please spread the word. The survey is open until March 31st, but we are hoping to have as many voluntary and community sector organisations (including CICs) participate as possible so as to ensure that our information is as useful as it can be to:

  • Public sector partners
  • VCS organisations in the county and beyond
  • Funders
  • And more!

Questions? Contact:

Thank you for your help!


Community Wellbeing Outreach Team

The Community Wellbeing Outreach Team is pictured delivering food to Cheshire Court in Coleham and to residents in Coton Hill by boat this week in the wake of flooding

Meet the Community Wellbeing Outreach Team

The work of the team is a legacy of Shropshire public health’s pandemic response undertaken by the Community Reassurance Team. The aim of the CWO team is to provide public health outreach support to local communities in Shropshire, building a healthier future for our residents. Though new staff have joined the team, many have stayed with us from their redeployment at the height of the pandemic.  

The team will play a key role in providing outreach support to local communities in Shropshire, working to ensure that access to local services are planned and delivered in a way which best meet the needs of the local community.  

The Community Wellbeing Outreach Team (CWO Team):  

  • Work alongside the Health Protection Team to support outbreak control and the Covid-19 vaccination rollout. 
  • Gather information from the community for the Joint Strategic Needs Assessment. The JSNA is a process which uses evidence to identify health and wellbeing needs within the Shropshire population. This information is then used in the planning and commissioning of services to ensure that we're prioritising the most important areas for improving health and wellbeing.
  • Carry out Community Health Promotion throughout Shropshire – supporting the community to live healthy lives by offering health checks, blood pressure checks, advice and raising awareness of the support available. 
  • Deliver on the ground Community Emergency Response in a crisis, i.e., during flooding (see photo above).

Team Members:

Hannah Thomas, Community Wellbeing Manager

Sarah Manning, Community Wellbeing Outreach Officer

Elliot Roberts, Community Wellbeing Outreach Officer

Brendan Waterworth, Community Wellbeing Outreach Officer

Chris Hirons, Casual Community Wellbeing Outreach Officer

Jo Blackburn, Casual Community Wellbeing Outreach Officer

Adam Zihni, Casual Community Wellbeing Outreach Officer

The team is looking forward to saying hello and gaining a better understanding of how they can work with you and your organisations to build a healthy, happy Shropshire. They would love to hear from you. Email Louisa Jones with questions or to get in touch with the team.


Exercise Toolkit Survey

A Chance to Participate in Updating the Exercise Referral Toolkit

The Exercise Referral Toolkit, used as a social prescribing resource, is over 10 years old. The toolkit helps to provide guidance to commissioners, exercise referral instructors and healthcare professionals in setting up, delivering and evaluating good practice schemes which link the health system (the referrer) and the sport and physical activity sector, supporting those living with health conditions to become and stay active.  

Loughborough University is working with Move Consulting to understand the need and scope for the redevelopment of a new toolkit to guide the creation of ‘supported pathways’ for people to develop a physically active lifestyle. They have set up a short survey to gather views around this.

This is a good opportunity to ensure that Shropshire, Telford & Wrekin voices are heard in this effort.


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Events and Training Opportunities

SIP logo

New Courses Launched to Help Shropshire Community Groups


Community groups within Shropshire are being invited to take part in a wide range of training courses to help them ‘survive and thrive’.

The varied topics are open to local charitable groups and organisations and include spotting the risks in vulnerable people, governance and legal structures and mental health awareness.

The accredited sessions start with ‘Encouraging Communities for a Safer Return’ on Tuesday 1 March and will initially take place online, with in-person events planned for later in the year.

As part of a launch offer two free places per organisation are available on the first programme of courses, held between March and May. From June onwards the same programme will run again and the cost of each session will be substantially subsided at £15.00 per delegate.  

The events are managed by the Shropshire Infrastructure Partnership (SIP) Voluntary & Community Support Team and are supported by funding from Shropshire Council.

SIP Team Leader Allison Richardson said: “We know that it can be overwhelming to help run a community group, particularly in these current times when support and information might not be readily available.

“We have put together a whole host of events that cover topics that we think will help strengthen community groups in Shropshire, ensuring they can continue to survive and thrive for the benefit of their local communities.”

For more information and to book your place on one of the events, visit the SIP Eventbrite page here.

The SIP Voluntary & Community Support Team was established last year to offer guidance and support, share grant opportunities and provide a volunteer matching service to local charitable groups and organisations.

SIP is a well-established partnership of Community Resource (previously known as Shropshire RCC), Qube, Energize, and Shropshire Youth Association. Collectively it has been delivering infrastructure support to the voluntary sector in Shropshire for more than 20 years.

To find out more about the other services available from SIP, please contact the support team by emailing


Upcoming Health Literacy Training

Health literacy is about people having enough knowledge, understanding, skills and confidence to use health information, to be active partners in their care, and to navigate health and social care systems. Therefore, to access, assess and apply health information, people need to be health literate. The health literacy levels in England are very low: 43% of 16 to 65-year-olds struggle with text-based health information; and 61% of 16 to 65-year-olds cannot understand health information that includes both text and numbers (Rowlands et al., 2015).

Click here if you are interested in reading more about the NHS Health Education England's Health Literacy Programme.

People working in health and social care need to be aware of health literacy and of the techniques that can help to increase understanding. These upcoming online courses are for anyone interested in learning more about promoting health literacy:




Signup/Contact Info

9th March

9 – 11am

Health Literacy Awareness course

31st March

1 - 4pm

Health Literate Organisation Workshop (must have previously attended a HL awareness course)


7th April


Health Literate Organisation Workshop (must have previously attended a HL awareness course)


12th April

9 – 11am

Health Literacy Awareness course

26th April

1 - 4pm

Health Literate Organisation Workshop (must have previously attended a HL awareness course)



King's Fund Free Online Course: Introduction to Leading with Kindness and Compassion in Health and Social Care

Develop your understanding of how to lead with compassion and kindness within the health and social care sectors with a free online course.

An introduction to leading with kindness and compassion in health and social care is an introductory three-week course from The King’s Fund, designed to introduce you to some of the foundations of leadership, kindness and compassion.

This course is for anyone working in or interested in health and social care regardless of experience or role, and can be completed in your own time.

Click here to read more about the course on the King's Fund site. To sign up, visit the course Future Learn link.

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Job / Volunteer Opportunities

Do you have a job or volunteer opportunity you would like us to promote? Please send your information to and we will include it in our next newsletter!

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Grant and Funding News

Grants to Celebrate Working Class Histories

Funding to improve understanding and awareness of overlooked historic places and stories across England.

Community and heritage organisations will soon be able to apply for grants of up to £25,000 for projects which engage with a wide range of heritage and enable people to creatively share overlooked or untold stories of their communities.

Historic England is delivering the Everyday Grants: Celebrating Working Class Histories programme as part of its Diversity and Inclusion strategy, published in 2020, which outlines its commitment to helping the heritage sector become more inclusive.

Grants could be used to celebrate aspects of diverse heritage including:

  • Local industry such as railways, mines and factories.
  • The working-class history of coastal and rural towns.
  • Local architecture.

Activities should provide innovative volunteering opportunities for young people or people facing loneliness or isolation, as well as contribute positively to participants' wellbeing.

For more information visit Historic England's Everyday Heritage Grants Call for Proposals.

The fund will close on 23 May 2022.


VCSA Website Features Funding Roundup 

The VCSA website will now feature a regularly updated roundup of relevant funding opportunities. While our newsletter highlights some of top latest funding news and opportunities, this list is a collection of many more up-to-date grant opportunities in an easy to download document. Check it out!


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To share your news with Shropshire Voluntary and Community Sector Assembly members and our partners email: