Earlier this year, East Brighton Trust directors decided to expand the reach of our funding to Lower Bevendean, meaning our grants schemes are now open to all eligible groups in Bevendean. We were able to help out immediately in the area due to the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic and issued an emergency grant to the Bevendean Food Bank to support the increase in demand and to support them in switching from a drop-in to a delivery-only food service.
Another fantastic organisation in the area is the Fernee Forest Club which offers children experiences in nature by using the Forest School approach. Teaching sessions had to move online due to the lockdown, and we issued emergency funding to enable the teacher to buy a laptop to facilitate this. Some of the grant also went towards “Forest Club post” - education packs which were delivered to local families, bringing the forest school to them whilst they couldn’t attend in person. The packs contained seeds, plants and compost, a craft challenge and a butterfly spotting challenge for forest club members to participate in. A lovely idea to keep members engaged and to bring a smile to their faces.
Local charity Gladrags has been asking people to share their Covid lockdown stories and has created a teaching resource for schools, to demonstrate how people’s lives changed during the pandemic.
East Brighton Trust sponsored Gladrags to create this resource as well as funding them to run a community bunting project.
Gladrags is a local community gem – a charity providing costumes and educational resources to community groups and schools. They have collected individual accounts of lockdown which will form a free online and printed resource for teachers and community workers to discuss the events of Covid-19 within their schools, community projects and well-being settings.
The charity has asked people to reflect on how Covid-19 changed things for them and to remark on how they have adapted. They asked people to talk about the challenges and also any positives that have come about as a result of the pandemic.
As well as collecting Covid stories, Gladrags also teamed up with local organisation Sew Fabulous to run a community bunting project. Individuals were invited to make flags from scraps of fabric which were joined together to make bunting for community celebrations post lockdown. An event was held last Saturday at The Bevy and volunteers sewed up the bunting contributions that had been gathered. You can see some of their work over on facebook.
As we have written about before, in the current climate of the Covid-19 crisis we have decided to focus our grant giving on responding to urgent local needs in our area of reach.
Here is an update on the emergency funds we distributed via our partners at Sussex Community Foundation in May as an emergency reaction to the Covid crisis.
Craven Vale Food Bank
The Craven Vale Community Association runs a regular food bank at The Edge community centre. As a result of the Covid-19 pandemic and the subsequent lockdown, the food bank volunteers saw a threefold increase in demand for the emergency food parcels they had been providing.
East Brighton Trust supported them with £2,000 of funding to purchase food, supplementing that which they receive from FareShare, BH Food Partnership and elsewhere and enabling them to supply food to almost 100 households. Secretary Alan Cooke dropped us a line to say thanks and told us:
"The money has enabled us to share not only food, but a true sense of goodwill between those who are in need and those who enjoy packing and delivering it - we truly believe that the food bank is pulling the whole community closer together”.
Brighton Women's Centre
Local charity Brighton Women's Centre saw a surge in demand for their services during the lockdown whilst also having to swiftly adapt the way these services were being delivered.
They informed us of their urgent need for additional mobile devices to enable contact between clients and volunteers in the East Brighton area as well as funds to ensure their telephone helpline service remained free for those who needed it. We were glad to be of help and awarded them £2,000 to support the women and families they work with.
Volunteer Services Coordinator Madison Hartwright told us "The money we received will have a great impact on our helpline service, allowing us to reach more women who are feeling isolated through the pandemic. The service is already having a great impact, providing these women with emotional support, and directing them to services that can support them with food, recovery and financial advice. Thank you for supporting us when it was most needed."
Bevendean Food Bank
Bevendean Food Bank runs a regular service for individuals and families experiencing food poverty in Lower and Upper Bevendean, Moulsecoomb, Bates Estate, Saunders Park, Meadow View and the Lewes Road corridor. In April, EBT directors unanimously voted to extend the East Brighton Trust area of reach into Lower Bevendean enabling us to support some of the fantastic initiatives in this area, such as the food bank. We awarded the Bevendean Food Bank £1,000 to support the increase in demand they had experienced since the beginning of the pandemic. Switching from a drop-in to a delivery-only food service to accommodate social distancing and safety guidelines, they now have more than 50 households on their books, meaning a much higher requirement of food supplies.
If your group or organisation in the East Brighton area requires urgent funding then please get in touch via our emergency funding form →
And our partners at Sussex Community Foundation continue to distribute the Sussex Crisis Fund which provides simple and quick access to funding for emergency and unexpected needs. Please visit their website for more information and how to apply →
In the current climate of the Covid-19 crisis and for the foreseeable future, East Brighton Trust directors have decided to focus our grant giving on responding to urgent local needs in our area of reach - that is Moulsecoomb, Bates Estate, Saunders Park, Manor Farm, Whitehawk, Craven Vale, Bristol Estate & Bevendean.
In mid-April, we distributed funds via our partners at Sussex Community Foundation to a number of projects as an emergency reaction to the Covid crisis.
Here is an update on where the funds went:
Moulsecoomb Primary School
We were pleased to award the school £3,000 to provide tablets to help pupils with onsite and remote learning.
The school has been in touch to say this will particularly help with getting young people access to the new online Oak academy – where a schedule of lessons is being provided to cover all ages from reception to year 10.
Headteacher Adam Sutton emailed to say:
“Thank you so much for this, it really is welcome. The recent announcement regarding the online 'National Oak Academy' has made this even more essential if our children are not going to be further disadvantaged by this crisis. This money will enable us to purchase laptops and data-dongles to allow those children without access to technology and the internet to try and keep engaged with the curriculum at home."
We were also able to assist them with a bit of technical support for the school website - helping them make home learning resources and welfare information more prominent as well as adding a link to their fantastic YouTube channel on which they are sharing a storytime each day.
St Marks Primary School
£3,000 was awarded to the fantastic St Marks to provide school meals, transport and cooking equipment for families who need it as well as resources for those learning from home.
Headteacher Jane Fendley emailed to say:
“Thank you very much for your very generous donation of support. This is a lifeline for many of our families."
A tweet (including the pictures below) said "We are so lucky to be able to put together further learning packs to supplement what has already been sent home. @RoedeanSchool have supplied us with a book for every child & @EBT_UK have funded our stationery packs. These will all be sent home next week with more activities."
Both of these emergency grants to the local primary schools are in addition to the Primary School Enrichment Grants which enable the schools to provide extra-curricular activities to enrich pupils’ educational experience and consequently their lives.
East Brighton Food Co-op
We awarded £3,000 to the emergency efforts to distribute food to local people in East Brighton.
East Brighton Food Co-op and their partners have opened two community kitchens as part of the Covid-19 emergency food response for the Whitehawk, Bristol Estate and Manor Farm areas. They have been cooking and delivering meals every day since 30th March - either free of charge or for a £2 donation.
You can find more info on their website and they frequently share updates on facebook including pictures of Buddy the horse out and about making deliveries.
The Bevy Meals on Wheels
We donated £1,000 to support The Bevy's community Meals on Wheels service in Moulsecoomb and Bevendean. They have now delivered over 900 meals and as well as providing tasty, nourishing food, their team is also able to maintain contact and keep an eye out for people in the community they know to be vulnerable. Find out more on the service on The Bevy website.
Some quotes from recipients and some pics below:
“What a lovely, lovely meal. Please thank the chef and everyone and the delivery lady and you. And the strawberries were lovely, you’re doing a great job thank you very much.” Pearl
“The meals have been a weight off my mind because although [my sister] was getting meals delivered before they were frozen and she couldn’t work it out and we were throwing endless meals away. But she loves these hot meals and she is eating them. It’s been a life saver and a godsend for her and for us. Thank you for everything you‘re doing there’s obviously a need.” Jenny
“Thank you so much for all the lovely food. Please let the chef know my daughter thoroughly enjoys his cooking as we all do.” Jacqueline
“The food is absolutely lovely, we really appreciate it. It’s become their highlight of the day and it also helps us keep track of the days and weeks because it’s easy to get lost.” Patrick
Sussex Homeless Support
We awarded Sussex Homeless Support £1,000 to set up a food bank and get food to homeless people in and from the East Brighton area. The images below are from their facebook page, on which they frequently post updates of the food they are serving - up to 90 meals each night.
In light of the current Covid-19 outbreak, the team at East Brighton Trust will be doing what we can to support the groups we work throughout this challenging time, despite the uncertainty of the situation.
In the first instance, we were made aware of some emergency funding needs in response to the Covid-19 pandemic and grants were issued this week via our partners at Sussex Community Foundation to the following groups:
to Moulsecoomb Primary School to provide tablets to help pupils with onsite and remote learning
to St Marks Primary School to provide school meals, transport and cooking equipment for families who need it
to The Bevy to support their community Meals on Wheels service (shown above)
to Sussex Homeless Support to set up a food bank and get food to homeless people in and from the area
Further to this and in line with Sussex Community Foundation, who are focusing on quick emergency funding in response to the crisis, we have decided to do the same. This year we will reduce the number of our normal grant-making rounds from three to two meaning the May deadline is therefore cancelled and the next deadline for applications is now Friday 11th September. From this September round onwards small grants of up to £1,000 are available.
To apply to Sussex Community Foundation for emergency funding, head to the Sussex Crisis Fund on their website.