Energy Case Study

Energy Know How attend the Rotherham foodbank at hope church every fortnight and I attended on 18th November 2021.

One of the first people to attend to collect their food parcel was a gentleman in his late 50’s. Whilst he was waiting for his food to be brought to him, I tried to engage him in conversation by commenting that it had dropped cold and just asked him “are you managing to keep warm?”

He did not answer immediately however, I could see from his face that this question had had a significant effect on him, and he composed himself and then said “no… to be honest I don’t know how I am going to manage the winter”

At this point his bags of food were brought to him and I got up and said to him, come with me… I walked with him to my car which was parked just outside the foodbank. I gave the gentleman a Winter Warmth Pack given to us by Greendoctors and which contained a blanket, hot water bottle, hat, gloves, socks, snood, led lightbulb and an insulated mug.

The chap then explained he was staying in emergency accommodation as all his belongings had been destroyed. He had lived in a flat and there had been a leak upstairs which brought down his ceiling – unfortunately, it was discovered there was asbestos in the ceiling so all his belongings were ruined and he was not allowed to have them back. He then said he was drinking tea and coffee from an old pot noodle carton.

He was very close to tears and just said – you will never know how much this means to me…

Although he was not given specific energy advice on this occasion, he was told that we attend the foodbank regularly and was given a leaflet with our contact details on. These details are also on display within the foodbank waiting area. He was encouraged to get in touch with us via the foodbank or directly when he is in more stable accommodation as we will be able to offer support with his energy needs and will be able to refer to other support organisations should he need them.

Energy Case Study

In the month of November, I met an individual at a local foodbank who only had the clothes on his back. I worked with the foodbank to get him an e-voucher for some food from their charity and some clothes more suitable for the weather, as the only had the clothes on his back. I invited him to our Money Talk event we had the week after, where we were offering advice along with free soup.

At the event, we had a few different organisations attend where we learned that this gentleman was having issues with his status. He has now self-referred to CAB where they are supporting him with this.

MOMGF Case Study

T at the Social Supermarket has completed his volunteer forms to become a volunteer with RotherFed. When we first met T, he wasn’t in a good place. He was in arrears with his Council Tax, which he has managed to pay off after learning how to budget better. He wasn’t in a good place with his mental health because of his money worries and issues with his property and landlord. He feels he is now on top of his other arrears after budgeting and arranging payment plans. We have managed to get him on the housing register with RMBC. The next step is to get him on medical priority due to his health issues, this should mean he will get a property that is more suitable for him and that is more affordable for him. He now volunteers at the Community Allotment in Rawmarsh, he regularly attends Job Club, and he comes along to all our events. It has been extremely rewarding to see how far T has come in the time that he has been involved with MOMGF.

East Herringthorpe Womens Safety Campaign

October saw the end of the women’s walking sessions and in November we got to take part in a self-defence session.

From the beginning of the project this group has been very hit and miss. There have been a lot of engagement from various sectors of the community, but just never at the same time!

Whilst it has been one of my more difficult projects, it has been so enjoyable! From theological discussions to ranting about the state of the parks due to folks not picking up after their dogs, I think at some point it has all been covered.

As part of the funding that RUCST had secured for this project we were lucky enough to have the opportunity to have a self-defence session run by the lovely Amy. She taught us the fundamental idea that if you are attacked, you should try and stay calm, defend yourself with minimal yet firm contact, but then try to get yourself away to somewhere safe….. Or basically kick them and run!

This project is being taken forward to Heart of the Community where I will be working with local residents and services to map areas of particular concern and working to try and improve the areas so that vulnerable people feel safer in their community.

As part of the project I have also worked with Cllr Eve Rose, Andrea Mason and Vicky Hilton from Artful to produce some banners, and took part in the Reclaim the Night event held in Rotherham Town Centre. Reclaim the Night is an annual event that takes place to highlight Womens’ safety issues in their communities.

Henley Residents Association

The Henley Residents Association group membership consists of 2 previous groups that have come together after their community activities came to a halt through lockdown. The group now consists of both Masbrough and Henley residents. Group members have been meeting regularly twice a week and have nineteen members. The group have also established a tuck shop of snacks that the group sell regularly from. The tuck shop sells drinks and snacks at about cost per unit to keep the group sustainable at each event and it has been a real success.

This came with its own issues as both groups ran activities differently in their old sessions. After the first couple of weeks there were issues with session times, prize pots and pricing of the snacks. The group have now settled into hosting their sessions and have already hosted several other events. On the 17th November Henley Residents Association hosted a Pie and Peas night which was highly successful and the attendance of the session reached the maximum capacity for the centre. The group had ‘The Green Pantry’ deliver freshly made heaps of pie peas and gravy. It was a great night.

Additionally the group planned a Christmas day trip to York Christmas Market 24th November. The group had successfully achieved a CLF funding bid of £455 with the support of RotherFed for a coach and parking to see the group have a wonderful day out for Christmas. Residents loved the day out saying, “It was nice to have things to look forward to after last Christmas” and ” It’s always good at York Christmas market”. After speaking with Jo who takes a lead in organising activities for the group, she said “the residents enjoyed the trip out and everyone had a really good time”.

It has been an eventful month for the group as they have also had visits from partners with the money management team, energy team, the RNN group for crafting and family history courses and a multi service quickly visit to be in held next month. Hopefully, the group will continue to go from strength to strength.

COP-26 Tree Planting with Winterhill School

To help Rotherham show its support for COP26, there were several environmentally friendly campaigns established across the borough. One of which was in partnership with Winterhill School in Kimberworth, where we helped support the tree planting initiative on the local greenspace next to the school.

The green space next to Winterhill school was once a beautiful area of natural scenery for the local community, we at RotherFed are working in partnership with the school on a long-term project to help restore the space to its former glory and beyond. At the tree-planting event earlier this month, a group of school pupils along with ourselves, teachers, and council representatives planted trees to grow in part of the area. In addition, the students were able to carve into a piece of stone which will be used as a decorative piece in the area once work is completed. There are big plans for the space so keep an eye out for new developments in this area! 

The goal overall is to be able to provide a space in Kimberworth for the local community to be proud of and use in their day to day lives, be it for a jog, a picnic, or dog walking! Developing our local greenery is a great way to make our community sparkle and develop pride in our community.

Thurcroft Firework Display Event

The long-awaited Firework Display took place on Saturday 6 November 2021 and again it was a huge success with the local community.  Since Thurcroft first received the million pounds back in 2012, a Firework Display has always been a high priority for the village and what people wanted to see happen.  We held the first event in 2019 and due to the success of this did it again this year, Covid 19 prevented last year’s event.  From 4.00pm there were children’s rides, catering vans, a tuck shop, cake stall, a raffle and the bar was open for refreshments.  The fireworks were lit at 6.30pm and what an amazing show it was, lasting 18 minutes long.  Blaze Fireworks who provided the display for us unfortunately has their unit broken into the weekend before and all the fireworks for their main displays (including ours) were stolen. 

However, this didn’t stop them from still managing to put on a brilliant display for us.  Over 2000 people attended the event and we raised over £1500 during the evening, this money will go into the Year 11 fund to enable events to continue to take place when Big Local has finished. Lots of people gave up their time to volunteer on the day, the event wouldn’t have run so smoothly without everyone’s help. 

Continue reading “Thurcroft Firework Display Event”

International Men’s Day Breakfast

To celebrate International Men’s Day, RotherFed hosted a Men’s Day breakfast and Men’s Mental Health Session. The event was attended by eleven people from across Rotherham and included a mix of RotherFed group’s members as well as people new to RotherFed events.

We invited local mental health group leaders down to talk about their groups and talk about useful hints and tips on keeping mentally healthy. Simon from Talk & Train did a small talk about the beneficial effects of exercise on mental health and promoted the fact that men need to talk more about their feelings as male suicide rates are on average 3 times higher than female.

As part of the event we held a mental health themed quiz with questions about if people knew where they can get help with mental health, and what they can do to help people in crisis.

Elf Watch!!

It’s that time of year again! Elf Watch is back due to its success last year we decided to bring it back. The Elf watch social media project engages with online community members of the RotherFed Good News Story members to post pictures of what their mischievous Elves have been getting up to over the run up to Christmas. This year the community have not disappointed as we have seen some crackers sent into us. This is designed to be a fun active post where people can show off their creative side and we’re seeing people have fun with this one.

As always, the project started on the 1st of December and ran until the 24th of December. The post has seen over 64 pictures added by 12 members of the Rotherfed Good News page. We received new images daily.

Continue reading “Elf Watch!!”

Energy Know How

By Sharon Smith & Noor Salih, Community Energy Advisors

Energy Know How successfully presented a session giving details about priority services register and warm home discount to a large group of elderly people who attended their regular luncheon group.

The meeting was arranged following a discussion at Rotherham Show with the group organiser, Julia who proceeded to contact us via the office.

A telephone discussion took place to discuss in detail the services Energy Know How could deliver, and agreement was made to attend the luncheon group on 27th October 2021.

We intended to speak to the group as a whole and took our projector and equipment however, on arrival it appeared that due to the social nature of the group, chatting and enquiring on each others’ wellbeing and the fact that there were several attendees that were hard of hearing, our original plans to talk to them as a group would probably not be the best option.

We discussed with Julia who organised the event and we suggested that we talk at each table individually allowing us to engage more personally with the group as there was a maximum of 4 people per table. It also allowed for questions and answers and a more personal service particularly for those that were hard of hearing.

In total we spoke to 35 elderly residents each one informed about priority services register and the warm home discount scheme, 5 people booked to have home visits for free draught proofing measures and to fit new led lightbulbs.

Each person was given a thermostat which will help them to regulate whether their homes are too warm or too cold and we then left the group to enjoy their lunch and bingo.