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Heart of England Community Foundation has been extending kindness across the region with its Coronavirus Resilience Fund, supporting charities that are having to adapt, modify or pivot to survive COVID-19.

In line with Mental Health Awareness Week, the Foundation has continued to award grants to vital services and charities supporting mental health needs, to ensure communities are still able to thrive during the pandemic.

Designed to destigmatise the topic mental health and encourage people to find the support they need, there has never been a more pressing time to commemorate Mental Health Awareness Week: with reports showing that charities across the UK will see £4bn lost in donations during the pandemic, Heart of England Community Foundation has been rallying to ensure that the service providers across the West Midlands are still able to support those who need it most.

With a reported increase in people feeling anxious due to the ongoing pandemic, more and more people are turning to local services to get the help they need.

So far, Heart of England Community Foundation has funded over 265 projects across the West Midlands and Warwickshire, all of which are fundamental to communities. Awarding over £780K, the Foundation has awarded funding to the likes of mental health charities Hope into Action, You can Flourish, Ordinary Magic C.I.C, Nightlife Outreach and tastlifeuk. Covering the breadth of the region, each one offers mentoring and support to those who find themselves struggling.

All of the charities were awarded grants between £1,000 and £3,000, to help them to make any necessary changes to the way they offer their services. Nightlife Outreach was awarded £1,350 and will be using the grant to ensure that it is still able to support service users with weekly meetings, allowing them to continue to improve their mental health, even from home. 

Tina Costello, Chief Executive at Heart of England Community Foundation, says: “Now more than ever charities need our help. The pandemic has created a lot of financial uncertainty to so many businesses across the country, and we predict even further losses for the third sector. Needless to say, this will impact so many people who rely on these services.

 “Funding these organisations is vital, as communities need support through these trying times. We hope that the Foundation can continue to help the local charities to ensure that important services, such as mental health organisations, continue to serve our region and ease any uncertainty that people may feel.” 

Since the launch, the Foundation has been inundated with funding applications and supported a range of causes from Sutton to Stratford. Having received such great support and feedback from this adapted fund, the Foundation have now launched a ‘Doing Things Differently’ fund. The new fund offers grants of up to £20,000, to help organisations change the way they deliver their work, this could include moving services to provide them digitally or redeploying staff to meet the changing needs of the community.

If you wish to spread kindness this week in the way of a donation to the Coronavirus Resilience Fund, please visit: http://virginmoneygiving.com/fund/crf

Bethany Wright
Article by Bethany Wright
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