Foundations for Funding with Afternoon Tea

Get funding ready with Marsha Miles Consultancy! A free funding event for fundraisers, trustees and charity leaders in Somerset, Devon and Cornwall. Enjoy afternoon tea, networking and an exciting line up of speakers:

Michelle Ferris, Director of Charities and Care at Albert Goodman
How to prepare for funding and make it easier for funders to understand you and your accounts.

Lizzi Ginby, Director at Teapot Creative
Lizzi will focus on the benefits of having a strong brand voice and online presence and how this will help engage your target audiences and give gravitas to your charity’s purpose.

Jen Windsor, Bid Writing Officer at Marsha Miles Consultancy
Jen will be presenting on the importance of demonstrating positive outcomes to funders in a target driven environment.

This is a free event with limited spaces available. It’s being held on Monday 2nd March from 12:30pm to 4:30pm in Weston, Devon.

You can find out more and book your space here.

Social Prescribing Workshop

National Voices is holding a regional South West workshop to capture the views of the VCSE sector on social prescribing.

Social prescribing, as described by the NHS and others, links people with health and care problems into practical and emotional support in communities and the voluntary sector.

National Voices is interested to hear about the experiences and perspectives of VCSE organisations on how social prescribing can fulfil its potential and improve the lives of people with health problems by better meeting their practical, social and emotional needs alongside their medical ones. This includes charities, social enterprises or other community-based organisations involved or looking to be involved in social prescribing in the South West. This could be in a role that links people with health problems into support and activities to improve wellbeing, a provider of such activities or as a community builder.

The workshop is being held on Thursday 5th March 2020, between 10am and 1pm at the South West Academic Health Science Network offices. You can register to attend HERE. Spaces will be confirmed as soon as possible.

This regional workshop is part of phase one of a National Voices social prescribing project. National Voices is the national umbrella membership body for charities working in health and care. The NHS England Personalised Care Group has commissioned National Voices to gather the insight and experiences of the VCSE sector on a key pillar of personalised care – social prescribing.


Join the Conversation About Mental Health Services in Somerset

This event is an opportunity for you to to talk about your experiences of mental health services in Somerset. If you’re affected by mental health, your opinion is really important.

The conversations around what makes good mental health support need to include input from those who live with it. Please do attend and provide that very important perspective.

There are big changes are happening to the way some mental health services are being delivered. Hear from some of the organisations that are doing things differently.

Emily Strange, Somerset Wellbeing Learning Community – a Recovery College for Somerset
Emily has wide clinical experience as an Occupational Therapist and is the clinical lead at the Wellbeing Learning Community. She has experience of living with mental health challenges, and this is at the heart of what the Recovery College is all about. There are a really wide range of experiences out there and Emily is going to talk about how it all works and what’s available.

Karl Adcock, Recovery Partners
Somerset Recovery Partners are an important part of mental health services in Somerset. They are a group of people who all have their own experience of living with mental health problems. The Recovery Partners make a very valuable contribution to decision making and many other things. Karl will share his story of hope, how he has benefitted from becoming a Recovery Partner, and talk about how you can get involved.

Tasha Marsh, Rethink ‘Creating Connections’
Rethink will soon be launching a new peer mentoring scheme in Somerset. It’s a new way to offer and receive support through one to one mentoring. Tasha will tell us more about the scheme, what it involves, and how to sign up.

A light lunch and refreshments will be provided from 1pm, with the talks starting at 1:30 pm.

An advocate will be on hand to represent attendees, if needed, and quiet rooms will be available, should anybody need to take a moment and get some space.

Service users may be entitled to claim back travel expenses. A claim form will be provided on the day.

It’s taking place on Thursday 13th February, from 1pm to 4:30pm at Wellington Baptist Church. You can book a free space here. To make a booking by phone, please call 01460 202970.

Networking Events for Somerset Social Enterprises

The Enhance Social Enterprise Network is holding a series of events for social enterprises in Somerset.

Grow it! 11th February, 6pm, Frome
An evening focusing on the growth and development of your social enterprise, and the support available to you. Speakers include Edventure Frome, Frome Town Council, Somerset Community Foundation, CAG Consultants, plus an open mic session.

Film it! 10th March, 6pm, Bridgwater
Film is one of the most immersive ways to capture an audience. Phil Shepherd, facilitator of Somerset Film and the Engine Room shares how they have developed their social enterprise over 25 years and how they have met the challenges of ever changing technologies and markets, competition and financial pressure, whilst staying true to their core mission.

Scale it! 26th March, 6pm, Minehead
How to take your social enterprise to the next level and learn lessons from other organisations further along their journey. Speakers include Minehead Eye, Somerset Community Foundations, open mic session plus have a go at bouldering!

Find out more and register here.

These events are being delivered by Smart Communities, part of CCS with funding from the Heart of the South West Enhance Social Enterprise programme.



Somerset Active Children Conference

SASP, in partnership with Somerset County Council is holding a Somerset Active Children Conference.

Only 21% of children in Somerset are getting enough physical activity. The aim of the conference is to bring people together to explore ways to improve lives, and increase physical activity for children in Somerset.

Featuring an exciting programme of speakers and group work, the conference will to equip attendees with the skills, ideas and knowledge they need to inspire the young people they work with to be more active, happier and healthier.

The conference is taking place on Tuesday 11th February, from 10am to 3pm at Kilve, near Bridgwater.

You can sign up at Bookings close on 31st January 2020.

For more information contact Nancy Murdock, SASP Children and Young People Strategic Manager, on or 01823 653990.

Free Peer-to-Peer Leadership Development Programme

Cascading Leadership: supporting peer-to-peer leadership development in the voluntary and community sector

Applications are now open for the Kings Funds’ Cascading Leadership programme, a free peer-to-peer leadership development course for voluntary and community sector organisations working in health and wellbeing. It enables VCS leaders to share their extensive and varied expertise with peers, to talk about some of the challenges they face and to plan new ways of working.

The programme is distinctive in that:

  • those who provide support are themselves leaders in the VCS, so they understand the strengths and challenges organisations face
  • it develops the skills of both those receiving and providing the support
  • those providing the support are supervised and trained by senior staff at The Kings Fund.

Participants can apply to the programme as either a consultant (an established charity leader) or a partner (a leader who is seeking support). Once selected, each consultant is matched with a partner to work with.

The pairs meet regularly over a period of nine months. During these meetings, the partner has the opportunity to work through organisational and leadership issues and receive support. The consultant benefits from being stretched to develop their own leadership and skills, while being trained, supported and supervised by senior staff at The King’s Fund. For both consultants and partners, Cascading Leadership can build confidence, develop skills, expand networks, help organisations tackle major issues and, in some cases, be transformational.

Find out more about this exciting opportunity here.

Community Buildings Training

Community Council for Somerset have recently announced new dates for their programme of training aimed at anybody involved in community buildings.

The full day training events will offer several courses throughout the day on a range of useful topics, including:

  • Trustees roles and responsibilities
  • Funding opportunities and how to write a successful application
  • Meetings and AGMs – how to run them successfully and efficiently
  • Safeguarding and what Trustees need to know and do
  • Working with Parish Councils
  • Marketing and Publicity – how to make a difference

The sessions are taking place across the county, you can find dates, details and booking information here.