28 January 2011

VCS Assembly News Update 28 January (Issue 58)

In this issue:

1. News
2. Dates for Your Diary
3. Funding News
4. Consultations
5. Compact
6. Career Opportunities
7. Important Reminders

1. News

Active4Health Launched Across Shropshire County
A new initiative has just been launched by Shropshire County Primary Care Trust (PCT) which provides information and support for local people who are looking to become more active and improve their overall health and wellbeing; helping to make it that little bit easier to at least stick to one New Year's resolution.

The new Active4Health webpages help bring together people who may have become inactive through ill-health, age-related conditions or who have never enjoyed formal exercise or sport with local exercise and activity providers. The online tool (www.shropshire.nhs.uk/active4health) provides information to public and patients on suitable exercise opportunities that can be matched to individual's needs, wants and level of experience.  It also provides a simple-to-use search facility to enable people to find appropriate exercise classes in their local community in Shropshire and put them in direct contact with those providers.

The PCT is still looking to add new services and exercise providers to the Active4Health site, and would encourage anyone who wants to be a registered provider of activities on the site to contact Miranda Ashwell by email Miranda.ashwell@shropshirepct.nhs.uk.

Please see full press release on the VCS Assembly Website.

Pride of Shropshire Awards 2011

The search begins once again today for the "Pride of Shropshire" . . . people, communities or organisations who go the extra mile, without seeking reward, to make the county proud. This year, judges are again looking to crown an overall champion, who will be selected from the winners of nine individual categories. Last year's Pride of Shropshire champion, Christopher Breakwell, pictured, from Burford, near Ludlow, again came from the Learner category. This year's individual categories are for:

7         Best New Innovative Company
7         Courage
7         Good Neighbour
7         Environmental Project
7         Special Young Person
7         Healthy Life
7         Community Group
7         Carer
7         Learner
Please consider making a nomination. Visit the following web page for more information. http://pride.shropshirestar.com/

News from
Shropshire Infrastructure Partnership
Shropshire Infrastructure Partnership has issued a mini edition of its newsletter, including reminders and some new information including details of the next Shrewsbury Media Surgery. A copy is attached.
pdf28th January SIP newsletter issue 8 (56.37KB) pdf21st January SIPnewsletter issue 7 (486.63KB)

Reviive wins reuse project of the year award
Social Enterprises South Shropshire Furniture Scheme (SSFS) and Shropshire Housing Alliance (SHA) have scoped this year's Presidents Award at the FRN's (Furniture Reuse Network) Annual Conference. The award, for innovation and partnership working, was presented to Julian Price, SHA's CO and Jean Jarvis MBE, SSFS' CEO, at the conference at St John's Hotel in Solihull this weekend, by FRN President Richard Featherstone, CEO of LCRN. The much coveted award was recognition of a five-way partnership with the two social enterprises, Veolia Shropshire, Ludlow College and THINKWATER. Reviive CIC was set up last October with household items being taken from the nearby Recycling Centre on the Battlefields Business Park in Shrewsbury, in cooperation with Veolia, who have also sponsored a delivery-vehicle. Reviive, open seven days a week, sells a range of low cost, eco chic, reuse furniture and household items. SSFS have been working with Ludlow College, through THINKWATER to upcycle chairs through their funky furniture project and design students have produced a range of stylishly designed chairs which will be sold through the Renaissance Centre in Ludlow and Reviive in Shrewsbury.

Jean Jarvis MBE said today "We are absolutely delighted to receive this recognition. Julian and I have worked very hard to get Reviive off the ground and support for this initiative is growing as more and more people hear about it. The funky furniture idea came when I was on holiday with friends, we saw some upcycled furniture in a shop in Ibiza and decided SSFS could do this. Phil Sams from THINKWATER set up a meeting with Ludlow College and they loved the idea of involving students in Social Enterprise. The design students were so enthusiastic and had such fabulous ideas that the project just took off. We plan to continue this initiative with this year's design students, using different furniture, it's very exciting"

Reviive on Battlefield Enterprise Park, Shrewsbury is now open Monday - Friday 10am - 5pm, Saturday and Sunday 10am - 4pm.

For more information please contact Jean Jarvis on 01584 877751 or email jean@furniturescheme.co.uk or visit the SSFS and Reviive website http://www.furniturescheme.co.uk/ www.reviive.co.uk

The Census in
Shropshire and Telford and Wrekin            

Update January 2011 From Alistair Bates, Census Area Manager.
The 2011 Census will take place on 27th March 2011 and it is important that everyone completes their Census form so that those making decisions have accurate information to enable them to plan services and to ensure that areas obtain the funding that they need to support their population. Alistair Bates is the Census Area Manager for Shropshire and for Telford and Wrekin. He wants to meet with community groups and workers to give more details about the Census process and the help and support available to ensure that everyone is able to complete their form. He can be contacted by e-mail at f102@census.gov.uk or by telephone on 07801 331358.

Important Census Dates
Beginning of February - the national media campaign will begin and census coordinators (11 in Shropshire, 6 in Telford and Wrekin) will begin their duties. Coordinators will begin to make contact with their local communities and will be able to provide information to local communities and groups.

Beginning of March - the census forms will be delivered to each household in the county. Special enumerators will contact communal establishments to give out forms and make arrangements to collect the forms around the time of the Census.
The Census helpline and Internet help services will open and you will be able to arrange any assistance you may need including help in up to 58 languages and for people with sensory impairments or disabilities.
27th March - CENSUS Day - forms are to be completed for everyone in the house on the day. You can complete the form online or by hand and return it by post. It will take about 20 minutes per household and about 10 minutes by each person - most of the questions only ask you to tick a box. Guidance and help is available in many languages and for those with disabilities.
28th March - 8th April - Alistair Bates is hoping to set up support across the county to enable people to go to a local centre to get help or information about completing their form. Please look at local notice boards and in local papers for the details.
Alistair is asking community groups to help with this part of the process so if you are able to help please contact him.
9th April until end of April After ten days Census collectors will be visiting households where a form has not been returned to provide help and support to allow households to complete their forms.
May - The census coverage survey will take place where a small number of households will be contacted as a follow up to allow the Office for National Statistics to check on the success of the census.
2012-2013     The first figures from the 2011 will become available for those planning services in the future.
2110   !! You (and your descendents) will be able to look at the forms that you completed in March. This is the first time the personal information will be made public.
More information about the Census can be found on http://www.census.gov.uk/

Alistair Bates can be contacted on f102@census.gov.uk or by telephone on 07801 331358. He can provide talks for groups, posters and other information or general guidance on the Census here in Shropshire and Telford and Wrekin.

Community Games
Information about the Community Games linked to the 2012 Olympic and Paralympics is attached.
pdfCommunity Games (3804.77KB)

Umbrella bodies mapping cuts together
National and regional bodies for the sector have collaborated to produce a website which aims to build a nationwide picture of how government spending cuts are impacting on voluntary organisations. It uses Google Maps to show the spread, and the front page form allows you to "share your experiences and the impact the cuts will have on the people who use your services". This appears to be focused on England, but allows for reporting funding cuts from the devolved governments too. Visit this link to provide or view information: http://voluntarysectorcuts.org.uk/

Invitation for charity secondments
The John Lewis volunteering programme, which is handled by the Golden Jubilee Trust, has issued a call for charities to apply for secondees from the company for periods of up to six months. See: http://www.johnlewispartnership.co.uk/Display.aspx?&MasterId=302088b7-fc0b-4b0c-b0d3-fe2389abdbca&NavigationId=624

Setting up a night shelter
The Christian action organisation Housing Justice has produced 'Shelter in a Pack', a resource for churches and communities considering setting up winter night shelters for homeless people. http://www.housingjustice.org.uk/

Transferring heritage assets to community groups
New guidance has been published to support local authorities and public sector bodies to work more closely with local groups to transfer historic buildings, monuments or landscape into community control. 'Pillars of the community: The transfer of local authority heritage assets' has been produced by English Heritage in partnership with the Development Trusts Association's Asset Transfer Unit, the National Trust and others. See: http://www.english-heritage.org.uk/caring/get-involved/take-ownership/

Sector bodies argue about future role of Charity Commission (from VolResource)
Differing views on the future role of the Charity Commission, working with a reduced budget, are highlighted by Civil Society Media. The general umbrella body for England NCVO believes it should reduce its advice giving role, while Charity Finance Directors' Group reckon that it is "essential" that smaller charities can continue to access tailored advice. Read more at http://www.civilsociety.co.uk/finance/news/content/8076/

Developing a network model for sector skills development (from VolResource)
After research and consultation, Skills - Third Sector is working on developing National Skills Networks and Academies, creating a network model (with better identification and sharing of knowledge/learning resources) to help fill key skills gaps in the sector. The four priority skills areas identified are governance and leadership, skills for business, managing volunteers, and measuring effectiveness and impact.

Guidance for charities on referendums (from VolResource)
The Charity Commission, the England and Wales regulator, has expanded its elections guidance for charities to include a new short section on referendums. Intended to be read in conjunction with its existing guidance 'Speaking out: campaigning and political activity by charities' (CC9), this explains circumstances in which it is appropriate for a charity to set out the pros and cons of a 'yes' or 'no' vote for their beneficiaries.

2. Dates for Your Diary

Inspiration & Legacy from the 2012 Games Project
The Community Council of Shropshire is hosting the 'Inspiration & Legacy from the 2012 Games Project' event at Shrewsbury Football Club on Thursday 10 February. The main workshop is being supported by the partnership of Volunteer England, YouthNet, Cabinet Office and Inspire by London 2012. The idea behind it is to inspire recreational/art/health related clubs and groups to be more creative with the recruitment and types of voluntary opportunities they offer and to raise their awareness around the support that is available for them to continue the great work. Attached is a small poster and booking form and below are further details about the day, if you need any further information please get in touch with Lisa Darkin (email Lisa.Darkin@shropshire-rcc.org.uk).

Further information:
Lunch is included
Presentation - Inspiration & Legacy from the 2012 Games Project
By the end of the workshop you will know:
™           How to increase the number and diversity of your volunteers
™           How to create games inspired volunteering opportunities
™           How to reach games inspired people with your opportunities
™           Where to find extra resources and support
funding for your sports group
™           Information/grant finding
™           Short Workshop on possible funding sources
™           Grant finder searches
™           Jargon buster on funding
Also find out how you fill committee vacancies from the Shropshire Volunteering Team
Tour of Shrewsbury Football Club - Booking Essential
Please use this information and the attached A4 poster and booking form in anyway you think is appropriate to attract bookings to the event.
docGames inspired workshop booking form (1033.5KB)pdf2012 Games Poster (1380.96KB)

NHS Consultation Keeping it in the County
Securing the future of hospital services in Shropshire, Telford and Wrekin.
A series of public meetings are being held over the next month and a poster is attached providing details. (Please see previous news items on our website - details at the end).
pdfShropshire PCT 26th Ad (1232.06KB)

Invitation - 2 February
Did you know that in your neighbourhood 7 out of 10 people over 55 aren't active enough to benefit their health? Shropshire Council, Shropshire County Primary Care Trust and Energize sports partnership are looking for men age 55 to 65 to help to develop a new and exciting participant-led project. This is an opportunity for you to have your say and help to change the way physical activity opportunities in the county are provided. You are invited to a discussion session in Market Drayton on 2 March. Full details are attached.
pdfinvitation for discussion Market Drayton (37.57KB)

Invitation - Wrekin Museum Partnership
Wrekin Museum Partnership (WMP) has the pleasure of inviting you to its 2011 Annual General Meeting on 18th February at 7:00pm at Wellington Civic Centre; Meeting Room. If you are in a group or organisation which would like to have a small display at the meeting, please contact Joanna Deacon on 01952 222636. Email: ec.wmp@googlemail.com

Localism, personalisation and leadership in the provision of services for older people - 18 February
Date: Fri, 18/02/2011 - 09:30 - 16:30
Location:  Network House, 174 -178 Barford St, Birmingham, B5 7EP
An invitation to voluntary sector organisations across the West Midlands, providing services to older people. RAWM and Age UK are working in partnership to host this conference which will have three key themes:
7         Personalisation and GP commissioning -are you gearing up to deliver?
7         Engaging older people in the shaping of services - how can VCS organisations ensure older people's voices are heard and taken into account?
7         Providing direction and leadership - leading your organisation through this time of change

Informed by a series of key speakers, and focused workshops you will have the opportunity to explore, listen and contribute your organisation's experience. The conference will also ask you to comment on the first draft of the evidence based document commissioned by RAWM and Age UK to support voluntary organisations in engaging with commissioners, funders and public sector bodies to secure contracts for delivery of services to older people. To find our more and book a place visit:

'Healthy Lives, Healthy People'
The public health white paper consultation regional events are now open to apply for places although they are limited. There are two ways to get involved: Attend one of the events at Maple House, Corporation Street, Birmingham. Either: 9.30 till 12.00 or 14.00 till 16.30pm or online through nhslocal or twitter see the attached page on NHS local for more information about how to get involved online
For more information or to book a place please contact Gill Beckett
For more information on the DH consultation visit

Pan-equalities and the Big Society
Date:  Mon, 14/02/2011 - 09:30 - 14:00
Location: The Deaf Cultural Centre, Ladywood Road, Birmingham B16 8SZ
To find out more or to book a place visit:

3. Funding News

Digital Switchover Grants Scheme
The Digital Switchover Help Scheme is available to support people who are:
7             are aged 75 or over; or
7             get or could get Disability Living Allowance, Attendance Allowance, Constant Attendance Allowance or mobility supplement; or
7             have lived in a care home for six months or more; or
7             are registered blind or partially sighted.
VCS groups and organisations in Shropshire interested in finding out more about the grants scheme can contact Clare Huckett at Gloucestershire Rural Community Council. Clare is the DOL Lead Organisation Project Manager. Email: clareh@grcc.org.uk. Phone: 01452 528491. There are a number of documents relating to the grants scheme so these will be made available on the VCS Assembly website from Tuesday 1st February see the latest news page at:

With thanks to Gary Spence, External Funding Officer and Joe Bubb, Team Leader Funding & Programmes

4. Consultations
None this week!

5. Compact
After a busy few months there is nothing to report this time.

If you would like to become a Compact Champion please email me, Sarah Dodds, sarah.dodds@shropshire.gov.uk or telephone 01743 252740.

Have you got a Compact story? Email sarah.dodds@shropshire.gov.uk and share it with others.

6. Career Opportunities

Chief Executive, Age Concern
Please see attached details of a vacancy available with Age Concern, Wolverhapmton. Please note that applications should be made by email only. The information pack is available from mail@acwolverhampton.demon.co.uk. CVs are not accepted. Closing date 3pm 14th Feb 2011.

Oswestry Youth Cafi - Funding/Project Manager - REMINDER
£ 25484     Pro Rata    16 hours per week

Do you have experience raising funding and enjoy working with young people?

Versatile enthusiastic individual required to raise funding for our voluntary youth facility and manage the day to day activities. The post is funded for 12 months (dependant on 3 monthly performance reviews). Full CRB disclosure required. For full details and job description contact:

Oswestry Youth Cafi, Queens Building, Oswald Road, Oswestry, Shropshire SY11 1RB
Telephone: 01691 656559. Email oyc@hotmail.co.uk to request an application pack.
Closing Date   31/1/11

More career opportunities are advertised on the Shropshire Infrastructure Partnership website. Visit: www.ShropshireVCS.org.uk

7. Important Reminders

News Items

New Year's Honour for Jean Jarvis
Jean Jarvis, Chief Executive of SSFS, has been awarded an MBE in the Queen's New Year's honours list. It is testament to Jean's inspirational leadership of the scheme over the past 10 years and her services to social enterprise across the UK.

Through the Doorway to Healthy Living - Spring 2011
Through the Doorway to Healthy Living has published the Spring 2011 Events Programme. For more information about Through the Doorway or to book places:
Tel: 01948 841466, Email: ams@doortohealth.fsnet.co.uk

Volunteers wanted!
Alzheimer's Society are keen to recruit (on an unpaid basis) some new volunteers to help out with street collections in the Shrewsbury and Telford areas and other volunteering work as required from time to time.  For further information/discussion, please contact Maureen Heath, Administrator, or Lyn Langdon, Support Services Manager, on 01743 341800. Email maureen.heath@alzheimers.org.uk or lyn.jones@alzlheimers.org.uk.


Baxi Community Challenge - Deadline 28 February
Do you know of a worthy cause looking for some help? Maybe it's your local village hall which needs a new water heater or the scout hut which is in need of a new boiler. Building Services & Environmental Engineer (BSEE) has teamed up with Baxi Commercial Division to offer one person the chance to help out their local community in the 'Baxi Community Challenge'.  http://www.bsee.co.uk/news/fullstory.php/aid/7130/Make_a_difference_in_your_community.html


Knowledge and Nosh 2011 - FREE Breakfast Briefings
The Shropshire Infrastructure Partnership's Volunteering Team hosted by the Community Council of Shropshire have organised another programme of free breakfast briefings for 2011. The sessions run from 8.30 am - 10.30 am, breakfast is included and booking is essential. See details below:

Tuesday 1 February 2011 - Ellesmere Boat House
Thursday 3 February 2011 - Church Stretton, The Longmynd Hotel
Wednesday 9 February 2011 - Shrewsbury, Lord Hill Hotel
Wednesday 16 February 2011 - Much Wenlock, The Gaskell Arms

Monitoring and Evaluation
Tuesday 15 February - Ellesmere, The Boat House
Monday 28 February - Bridgnorth, Parlours Hall
Friday 11 March - Church Stretton, The Longmynd Hotel
Tuesday 15 March - Shrewsbury, Lord Hill Hotel
Contact: Lisa Darkin.
Telephone: 01743 342 177 or Email: lisa.darkin@shropshire-rcc.org.uk

NHS Consultation - Keeping it in the County
Shropshire's NHS is keen to hear your views on proposals to change the way some services are arranged between the Royal Shrewsbury Hospital and the Princess Royal Hospital at Telford. Meetings are being held on:
7                     Wednesday 9 February at 7pm at Craven Arms Community Centre
7                     Wednesday 16 February at 7pm at Holiday Inn, Telford
For more information about the consultation and how to get involved, follow the link on this page. The consultation will run from 9 December 2010 through to the 14 March 2011.

VCS Annual Assembly - REMINDER
The 2011 Shropshire Voluntary and Community Sector Annual Assembly will take place on 7 April. Please pencil the date in your diary!


Bus Strategy for Shropshire 2011- 2016
Bus Strategy for Shropshire Council 2011-2016. The consultation will be undertaken during January to March 2011.  Comments from the consultation process will be considered in the final Bus Strategy which will be submitted to the Council in April 2011. The Strategy and details on how to respond to the consultation can be viewed at:

Local Transport Plan for Shropshire Consultation
The bus strategy forms part of a wider Local Transport Plan (LTP) which covers all aspects of Transport and Highways.  The Council is currently consulting on a new LTP which sets out our policies and priorities for the next 15 years.  You can get involved by:

Completing a simple web based survey on spending priorities available now at:  http://www.shropshire.gov.uk/transportconsultation

Commenting on the draft LTP which includes area based strategies, which will be available in mid January at:http://www.shropshire.gov.uk/traveltransport.nsf/open/2A79133CD32676E98025709E002EEF2B
For further information on the LTP please contact Jan Cook. Telephone: 01743 253066. jan.cook@shropshire.gov.uk

Please contact me if you have information you would like to share with Shropshire's voluntary and community groups and organisations.

With best wishes

Sarah Dodds
VCS Assembly Coordinator
Telephone 01743 252740
Email: sarah.dodds@shropshire.gov.uk