VCSA Newsletter Week of 30th May 2022

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Newsletter for the Week of 30th May 2022


healthcare students

North Shropshire Social Prescribers - Interested in Student Placements?

A Health Education England (HEE) project based in Cheshire are looking for North Shropshire-based voluntary and community organisations who are interested in working with healthcare students for their Clinical Placement Expansion Programme (CPEP).

CPEP is seeking out new and exciting opportunities for students, particularly within voluntary and community organisations offering social prescribing, so they can experience varying settings, which often differ from the norm of secondary care placements.

Students include those working toward nursing, physiotherapy, occupational therapy and other healthcare qualifications.

If you are curious about what working with healthcare students might bring to your organisation, you can download this flyer, and/or email the Health Student Placement Team.

image of previous award winners

Left to right: Jacqui Idiens (Park Lane Centre), Mayor Cllr Andy Munro (Church Stretton), John Ingham (Belle Vue and Coleham), Jo Cooper (The Community Foundation) Andy Neal (West Mercia Search and Rescue), Allan Wilson (Edgmond) Deputy Mayor Cllr Dorothy Roberts (Wellington).

Shropshire Outstanding Community Award - Now Open for Entries

The Community Foundation is excited to launch a new initiative in Shropshire offering communities within the county, the opportunity to be recognised and be able to celebrate a strong, supportive community spirit.

Shropshire’s Outstanding Community wants to offer all communities within the county the opportunity to be recognised. To celebrate the strong, supportive community spirit. Whether it’s a community within a town, a village or even a street or housing development, we want to shine a light where people come together and support each other. A community of people who have developed a safe and thriving environment in which to live.

Plenty of great things go on within our communities which does not always get duly recognised. We would like to encourage people who take pride in their community, both rurally and within our towns, to come forward and showcase what they have achieved. It is an opportunity to tell us about the great things that are going on within your community and celebrate why it’s great to live in Shropshire.

Download an entry form here and visit the Shropshire Outstanding Community website for more information and to see previous winners! Deadline for entries is 30th June 2022.

positive age icon

Centre for Aging Better Release 'Ageism Explained' Video

Ageism is the most widespread form of discrimination in the UK. It will likely impact us all at some point, particularly as we get older.

In this new short film, the Centre for Aging Better explore what ageism looks like, and the impact it has on our lives.

In related news, the Centre for Aging Better also released a free age-positive image library earlier this yearThe library contains universal open-source licensed photos and icons all aimed at portraying aging people in a positive way. 

Both the video and the image library are tools the organisation encourages VCSE organisations to use to tackle ageism, or what the organisation calls "prejudice against our future selves."

king's fund logo

King's Fund Release Video on NHS Changes

"How does the NHS in England Work and How Is it Changing?" is the title of a new ~6min video aimed at explaining the current NHS structure and the introduction of Integrated Care Systems.

This video can could be useful for explaining the ICS to service users, volunteers and employees of organisations who work or partner with the NHS.

If you would like to provide feedback on the video, email the King's Fund.

image of a person taking a survey

Current VCSE Engagement Opportunities

The VCSA newsletter will now contain a regular feature highlighting current open surveys and engagement opportunities that are relevant for VCSE organisations and their beneficiaries.

Flyers/materials for distribution will be made available for download as well as any relevant links. If you have engagement opportunities to share/list here please email Sarah Hampson, VCS Insight and Engagement Officer at Shropshire Council to have it included in an upcoming newsletter.

NHS Working in Partnership with People and Communities: Draft Guidance Consultation: Due to the relatively condensed period between Royal Assent of the Health and Care Act 2022 and implementation on 1st July 2022, the consultation period is taking place over a relatively short period of time. Closes 30th May

  • More information on the survey on the NHS website
  • Download the draft consultation guidance summary
  • Download the full draft consultation guidance
  • Survey link for providing feedback
  • Email for more information or a paper copy

Survey on Apprenticeship Needs: The Business Administration Trailblazer group are currently seeking employers and providers who currently offer apprenticeships to complete their short survey to help them to understand the apprenticeship needs. Closes 31st May

  • Survey link (note: the survey is being run by Hull Council, which is the group lead)
  • If you would like to join the Trailblazer group, email Tom Pierce for more information

SMI and Complex Needs Survey: seeking to improve care for severe mental illness and complex needs in Shropshire, Telford & Wrekin. Closes 31st May

Shrewsbury Health and Wellbeing Hub: Organisers of the new hub seeking focus group and reference group participants to help shape and improve plans for the hub. Closes 31st May

Family Information Needs Survey: The Family Information Service is keen to make sure that the information it provides, and the way in which it's provided, meets the ever-changing needs of families in Shropshire. Closes 24th June

  • Survey link
  • Need alternative format, email or phone 0345 678 9000
  • Post feedback to: Feedback and Insight team, Shropshire Council, Shirehall, Abbey Foregate, Shropshire. SY2 6ND

Coton Hill House service reconfiguration: consultation is designed to obtain the views of local residents and all stakeholders prior to making the planning application in summer 2022 for change of use of Coton Hill House, from a residential home to a supported housing scheme. Closes 30th June

  • 'Drop-in week' in-person consultation at Coton Hill House from Monday 6th June through Friday 10th June between 10:30am and 6:30pm.
  • Survey link
  • Send feedback via email
  • Post feedback to: Feedback and Insight team, Shropshire Council, Shirehall, Abbey Foregate, Shropshire. SY2 6ND

Housing allocations policy revisions: Have your say on draft revisions to Shropshire Council's Housing Allocations policy. Closes 3rd July

Libraries strategy 2022-2027: Provide your feedback on the draft strategy, which describes the changes the Library Service will make to be at the forefront of the council’s future relationship with its residents, and how the service will work in partnership with others to deliver the county’s priorities. Closes 3rd August

Victim Support: LGBT+ Support Services: Victim Support West Mercia want to gain a greater understanding of the visibility of victim / survivor support services in the LGBTQI+ communities in the region. They are also very interested in understanding any additional barriers/challenges to accessing such services; and/or reporting to the police. They would appreciate sharing of the survey with your beneficiaries as well as any feedback from the VCSE. Closing date 30th June

Healthwatch: 999 and ambulance services feedback. Healthwatch want to understand how the current strains on the ambulance service are impacting people’s health and lives. No closing date

Healthwatch: Accessible Information Standard survey as part of the 'Your Care, Your Way' campaign. Closing date TBD

Interested in having your organisation's stories of success featured in our newsletter, website or social media? We want to hear from you! Contact:


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Events and Training Opportunities

save the date

All voluntary and community sector groups are encouraged to attend this workshop to hear more about the Draft Health Inequalities Plan for Shropshire. 

The workshop will be an opportunity to hear about the draft plan and to provide feedback.

If you are interested in attending, please email Sarah Hampson, Insight and VCS Engagement Officer with Shropshire Council to receive a link for the meeting.

QAVS logo

Queen's Award for Voluntary Service:

Online Information Session 14th June

The Queen's Award for Voluntary Service celebrates the outstanding work of local volunteer groups across the UK. Groups do not have to be a registered charity, any voluntary organisation with three or more volunteers can be nominated. The award is the equivalent to an MBE and the highest award given to local voluntary groups in the UK, giving Royal recognition to the work
they do.

The Lord-Lieutenant of Shropshire has been delighted to see so many voluntary groups in the county being awarded the Queen's Award for Voluntary Service and would like to support even more organisations across Shropshire win this award.

The Shropshire Lieutenancy will be hosting a Zoom briefing session to provide further information and explain nomination process on: Tuesday 14th June 2022 at 6pm – 7pm

For further information and/or to book a place please email Shelley Davies. 

person cycling

Shropshire Poppy Ride

The Royal British Legion is encouraging people to get in the saddle and take part in its third Poppy Ride event to help support service and ex-service personnel and their families.
The popular cycling event will take place on Sunday 19th June 2022.   Poppy Ride will start and finish at the RBL’s Battle Back Centre in Lilleshall, a specialist recovery facility that supports wounded, injured and sick service personnel to return to active duty or make a smooth transition to life outside of the Armed Forces.   
Entry for all distances is £32 and includes an exclusive Poppy Ride medal.
For more information or to sign up, visit the website. You can also email the events team or phone them on 0333 0114500.

SIP logo

SIP Team Adds Several New Training Courses

The Shropshire Infrastructure Partnership Voluntary and Community Development Team have now added over 20 new accredited courses into their training programme .

These new courses now also include face to face training opportunities across the County from a variety of different trainers.

From the 1st June all courses are being offered at a hugely subsidised rate of £15.00 per attendee for all courses. Demand for the training opportunities continues to be very high and places are already booking up quickly. So, they are urging you to sign up to your chosen courses as soon as possible to avoid disappointment.

Types of courses which have been added are 1 Day Emergency First Aid at Work accredited courses, Volunteer Management and Support, Writing Successful Funding Bids, Health and safety Premises Management, Equality and Diversity, Cyber Essentials plus many more.

Courses are limited to 2 spaces per organization and they continue to operate a waiting list. These courses are suitable for all volunteers and staff working in the Voluntary Sector in Shropshire.

For more information on courses, dates and times, and to book a space, visit the Eventbrite page.

care in the square flyer

Two Upcoming Digital Literacy Courses from WEA West Midlands

The West Midlands Workers' Educational Association is offering two upcoming courses aimed at improving adult learning around IT skills.

The IT Skill Builder Course is aimed at improving on basic Word and Excel skills, and will run on Fridays beginning 10th June to 1st July from 10-11:30am. Download the flyer here.

Microsoft Word and Powerpoint: The Basics is designed for beginners looking to learn how to use these programmes, and will run on Mondays from 6th June to 11th July from 10-11:30am. Download the flyer here.

Fee waivers are available for both classes. To learn more, download the flyers above or visit the WEA wesbite.

Carers week logo

Carers Week 6-13 June 2022

Carers Week is an annual event to raise awareness of caring. The theme of the week this year is ‘Make caring visible, valued and supported.’

Carers week is an opportunity to say thank you to all unpaid and family carers in Shropshire, to say that we recognise and appreciate the valuable support you provide to others.

Shropshire Carers Support team are excited to share this year’s Carers Week Events Programme with you.  This year they have extended the activities over a 2-week period (6 – 19 June 2022) to try and reach as many carers as possible, activities are a blended mix of outdoor and virtual options – whether you want to come along to the activities or join them from home there is something there for everyone.

To book a place on any of the activities, please email the Shropshire Carers Team or telephone 01743 341995.  If you have transport difficulties to any of the activities, please advise when booking. 

Competition Time! Shropshire Carers Team are also running a competition – deadline for entries is Monday 13th June 2022check the programme for details!


welcome to telford sign

'Telford & Wrekin at its Best' 

July 6th, Meeting Point House, Telford

Come join the Unlocking Potential Alliance of Telford for an event that they hope will inspire you, encourage you and help build on the strength of your knowledge and work within the borough.  

This is planned to be a full-day event to talk and share progress from the work of the ‘Unlocking Potential Alliance’ and Lloyds Bank Foundation People and Communities; the opportunity to help shape and influence the next steps of the work; and to ascertain the role everyone will play in enabling the unlocking of potential for those living and working in the borough by sharing successes, work being undertaken and further opportunities.   

The event will include a light network breakfast and lunch followed by opportunities to understand other ways to engage, benefit and be involved in areas of Lloyds Bank Foundation work within the borough.   

This event is open to all: those familiar to the work of the alliance; those new to the work and want to learn more or those who want to be engaged in its development. More detail and a link to register for this exciting event can be found on their Eventbrite page

SAND LGBT+ Awareness Training

28th June 10am - 1pm, The Roy Fletcher Centre, Shrewsbury

The next SAND training session is aimed at staff working or volunteering in Health & Social Care, voluntary sectors and related services in Shropshire, Telford & Wrekin, Herefordshire.

This LGBT+ awareness raising course has a specific focus on issues impacting on LGBT+ people as we age. It provides a safe space for people to explore and discuss issues relating to creating safe, inclusive and welcoming environments for lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans (LGBT) people, in particular focusing on older and old LGBT people.

For more information on the event and to book your place, please visit their Eventbrite page.

NHS big tea flyer

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Job / Volunteer Opportunities

Mayfair Centre Logo

Mayfair Community Centre: IT Officer

Mayfair Community Centre in Church Stretton is looking for an experienced IT Officer to take a lead on the development of IT services for Mayfair activities as well as programmes to support digital inclusion in the community. The post holder will be responsible for providing efficient IT support for the organisation and will coordinate a team of volunteers. We are looking for someone who has enthusiasm for the digital agenda, with excellent IT, organisational and people skills.

Between 22.5 & 37.5 hours, salary £25,000 FTE.

For more information and to apply, visit their website or call Mayfair on 01694 722022 and ask for Nicola or Cathy.

Closing date 13th June. Interviews 15th /22nd

energize logo

Energize: Empowering Communities Manager

Energize Shropshire, Telford & Wrekin Active Partnership has an exciting opportunity for an experienced Empowering Communities Manager to join the team.

Location: Hybrid, working within the office in Shrewsbury and from home.

Hours: Full time (37 hours per week). The post has flexible working, with some evenings and occasional weekend work, but it is intended for the role to be mainly delivered during weekdays, office hours.

Salary: £29,651 to £33,709 depending on experience

Contract: Fixed Term to March 2027

Download the person specification to learn more. You can also visit the Energize website for more information on the organisation and the role.

Please email your CV and covering letter by 12:00pm on Monday 13th June.

If you would like to have an informal discussion around the role. Please call Jessica Bradbury – Head of Operations - on 07958 318915

age uk stw logo

Urgent: Volunteers Needed for Wellington Donated Furniture Shop

Age UK Shropshire Telford & Wrekin is urgently seeking more volunteer customer service and van assistants to ensure the continued success of its donated furniture shop in Walker Street, Wellington.

The charity is looking for people who enjoy meeting the public and who would be able to provide excellent customer service in the shop both on the telephone and in person. Full and half day shifts are available. The shop is open Monday to Saturday 9.30am to 4.30pm. Minimum half-day commitment required. Retail experience is desirable but not essential as full training will be provided.

More volunteers van assistants are also needed to go out with the driver to deliver purchased items and collect donations bringing them back to the shop. Shifts are available on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays. Volunteers must be able to lift and move heavy items of furniture safely and manual handling training is provided.

Please call into the shop or contact Age UK Shropshire Telford & Wrekin’s volunteer recruitment team on 01743 233 123 ext 283 for further information and an application pack. Alternatively, visit the STW Age UK website or email the team.

celebrate the relay logo

Volunteer Opportunity: Queen's Baton Relay

The Birmingham 2022 Queen’s Baton Relay is coming to Shrewsbury on the afternoon of 18 July and will be passing through the streets on its way to the River Severn and into the Quarry where Shropshire Council and and partners are staging a huge celebration.

This takes a considerable amount of organisation and the Council are on the lookout for volunteers to help on the day.

If you think you may be able to help and want to be part of this great occasion please register your interest

invite to volunteer with SaTH

Volunteer Opportunity:

Ward Volunteers at The Shrewsbury and Telford Hospital NHS Trust (SaTH)

As a ward volunteer, you will meet lots of new people and become part of the ward team to support our patients. The aim of your role as a ward-based volunteer is to make a patient's stay in hospital as comfortable as possible by offering them your friendliness, energy and resourcefulness throughout your time there. You may also help encourage patients to eat and drink to help their recovery. There are many aspects to ward-based roles and for some elements (mealtime buddies volunteers) you will need to complete additional training provided by the Volunteer Team.

A ward is a busy environment and it is essential that volunteers are able to take a proactive approach to the role, whilst always being guided by the Nurse in Charge, your role description and importantly, the wishes of the individual patient.

To be considered for this role you must have an empathetic and caring nature and be available for at least 4 hours every week.

If you would like to join their volunteer community, SaTH would love to hear from you. To find out more or apply today, please visit their website or call 01743 492256.

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

Western Power Distribution Providing Grants to Tackle Holiday Hunger

Non-profit groups and Local Authorities can now apply for their share of a £500,000 funding pot to address poverty, particularly over the school holidays.

Localgiving will distribute grants of up to £2,500 for projects which align with at least one of the following themes:

  • Providing food to families affected by holiday hunger, eg food parcels and serving meals.
  • Delivering services to assist families affected by holiday hunger, eg food pantries.
  • Delivering educational activities focused on skills development and ongoing support to reduce food poverty (could include cookery classes, budgeting support, benefits and debt advice).
  • Offering innovative approaches to holiday hunger and food poverty.

The following types of organisations may apply:

  • Registered charities.
  • Constituted charitable organisations with no charitable number.
  • Registered charities.
  • Local government organisations, including county councils; district, borough or city councils; unitary councils; metropolitan boroughs; and parish or town councils.

Groups must be based in either the East Midlands, West Midlands, South-West of England or South Wales. An eligibility checker can be found on the Localgiving website for groups who are not sure if they meet the geographical requirements.

The deadline to apply is 14 June 2022. Find our more and apply on the Localgiving website.

Localgiving Magic Little Grants

Magic Little Grants 2022 has now launched, with applications taking just 10 minutes to fill out and submit!

After successfully distributing 2,000 grants to Localgiving members last year, making it their biggest ever Magic Little Grants programme, Localgiving are incredibly excited to announce that 2022 is going to be even bigger and better than ever before! They will be awarding £500 grants to 2,650 charitable organisations on Localgiving.

This year we they be funding more organisations than ever before and will still be spreading this funding out far and wide across the country. This year funding can go towards any of the following projects:

  • Improving mental wellbeing
  • Enabling community participation in the arts
  • Preventing or reducing the impact of poverty
  • Supporting marginalised groups and promoting equality
  • Improving biodiversity and green spaces
  • Enabling participation in physical activity
  • Responding to the climate emergency and promoting sustainability
  • Increasing community access to outdoor space

 The application process is short and simple, taking ten minutes to complete. Each organisation may only apply once in 2022.Organisations must either be in their first year of operation or have an annual income under £250,000. Funding can be used to launch new projects, support existing ones, or cover core costs associated with ongoing work. 

If you have been awarded a Magic Little Grant in previous years, you will need to have completed and returned your monitoring forms for those years before you can receive another grant. 

You do not need to be registered with Localgiving to apply for the grant, but you do need to go through their validation checks. Please see the Localgiving website for more details and to apply.

Hilden Charitable Fund Reopens with Fresh Guidelines

Funding for charitable organisations working in the areas of penal affairs and asylum seekers.

Hilden Charitable Fund, a grant-making organisation which aims to address disadvantage by supporting causes less likely to raise funds from public sources, is once again accepting applications after undertaking a funding strategy review earlier this year.

The following non-profit groups in the UK may apply, providing they have an income of less than £250,000 on average over the last three years:

  • Registered charities.
  • Charitable companies.
  • Community Interest Companies.
  • Charitable Incorporated Organisations (CIOs).
  • Excepted charities.

Grants will usually be in the range of £5,000 to £7,000 per year for up to two years. These can come in the form of unrestricted funding. However, to be eligible for unrestricted funding, all of an organisation's work must meet the Fund's criteria.

There are two funding programmes available:

  • Asylum Seekers: For organisations working to provide essential services which help meet the needs of asylum seekers and refugees and support their integration into the wider community.
  • Penal Affairs: For work "through the door" where organisations go into prisons with projects and support to help prisoners (especially women) cope and/or maintain family bonds and to be better able to resettle positively when released. Post-release projects which support positive settlement and reduce the risk of re-offending are also welcomed.

The next deadline to apply is 3 July 2022. For more information, visit their website.

Don't forget to check out our website for the latest VCSA funding roundup as well as grants with rolling deadlines. 

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