More than 70 community groups from across Wirral are to receive funding to help them re-open their buildings and safely welcome back members and customers.
Almost £250,000 has been awarded to the groups from Wirral Council’s ‘Social Sector Setting Road to Recovery Fund’, which is part of the authority’s Covid Winter Grant Fund from the Department for Work and Pensions.
A wide range of community buildings will benefit from the awards – including sports clubs, church halls, guides and scout huts, community centres and play groups – where the funding will be used towards a range of safety measures including ventilation improvements, deep-cleaning and Personal Protective Equipment (PPE).
It will also allow many of the groups to provide new and improved outdoor spaces so they can provide more of their services outside and give users extra space to socially distance in the fresh air.
The successful projects include:
• Leasowe Play Youth & Community Association
• Tomorrow’s Women Wirral
• Number 7 Café and Social Supermarket
• Ferries Family Groups
• Age UK Wirral
• Royal Airforce Association
• Byrne Avenue Trust
• Wirral Change
• Rock Ferry Salvation Army
• Wirral Youth Zone
• 8th Bebington (Brackenwood) Scout Group
• Eastham Community Centre
• Irby Cricket Club
Mark Camborne, Chair of Wirral’s Humanitarian Cell and Wirral Council’s assistant director for neighbourhood safety and transport, said, “Since the Pandemic began Wirral’s 3rd Sector community groups have been working alongside public and private sector representatives on the borough’s humanitarian cell and have played a critical role in supporting local people through the Pandemic, including many of the area’s most vulnerable residents.
“Community groups have all had to adapt to different ways of working as social distancing, shielding and the various lockdowns have meant their members have been unable to visit them.
“As the restrictions ease, it is time to help them prepare to re-open their doors and ensure they remain Covid-free and ready to play an even more vital role supporting our communities as people come back together again in their more usual way.”
The successful projects have until 31st August 2021 to spend the funding.
Helen Wade, CEO of Ferries Family Groups, said, “It has been such a challenge to raise funds through lockdown, so we are so grateful to receive this funding to create an outdoor space for our Family Support Hub.
“Our staff and volunteers have worked tirelessly throughout the pandemic to provide vital emotional and practical support for struggling local families, including countless hours online providing one-to-one and group support, as well as many hours of telephone-based support, but it will be amazing to finally welcome everyone safely back home to the hub.”