Open Arms Canklow information event

Open Arms sessions have been running at Canklow Pavillion on a fortnightly basis since April 2023. We decided at quite short notice to hold an information session during the school holidays for families to come along to and find out more about the project. We arranged for Making Our Money Go Further to attend with us and they brought along a hamper of shopping to give away to the person who guessed how much it would cost. We also arranged for an ice cream van, who works in the Canklow area, to come along and we had vouchers people could exchange with them for a free ice cream. Posters were put up in local businesses and publicised through social media platforms.

On the day, Wednesday 31st May, the weather did not look too promising, so we were not sure how many people would attend. We were therefore so pleased when we started seeing families heading towards us outside the pavilion!

In total we had around 10 families come and talk to us about the project, have a go at guessing the price of the hamper, and enjoying a free ice cream. Some people we spoke to were referred into Citizens Advice for support on the day, while others have said that they would prefer to come back and speak to them at our regular drop-in session instead. We were pleased by the success of the event and plan to do more family friendly activities at the sessions.

Friends of Dalton, East Herringthorpe & Thybergh Green Spaces Celebrate the Coronation

Friends of Dalton, East Herringthorpe & Thrybergh have been at it again! This time the group were successful in being awarded the Kings Coronation Grant from Rotherham Council to host a celebratory event alongside the rest of the country in honor of our newly crowned King.

The aim of the grants were to ensure that community groups and organizations can deliver a range of activities for local residents to enjoy and celebrate the Kings Coronation.

Well… Following on from last month’s successful Easter event the DEHT group put together, yet another volunteer led event. It was supported by 4 volunteers who had given up their time not only on the day to make sure that the event ran smoothly on the day but also over the weekend to prepare the neighborhood center with a selection coronation decoration and set the room ready for the big day.

Rotherham Council’s coronation funding was well spent as the event engaged with 55 residents from the immediate and wider area. There was a wide selection of people drawn into the event such as RMBC tenants, families, friends as well as the usual group members. As always everyone attending got to taste the great buffet the group always manage to provide for everyone, if you’ve been to one of their events then you know how good the food is! Accompanying the scrumptious buffet there are always some fun games about for the for children and a variety of raffle prizes for adults. The group managed to raise a huge £505.86 on the day with prizes such as 7 £25, meal for 4 at toby carvery, £50 voucher for windows, car diagnostics free of charge voucher and many more. The group are already in the process of planning a summer event for August. The feedback was positive, and the community is looking forward to the next event.

“Really enjoyed it”

“It was great to share the event with you all.”

“Loved every minute, well done everyone.”

“Well done, 👏great day, you all put a lot of work into it.”

Peregrine Way

Peregrine Way TARA secured funding from the King’s Coronation from Rotherham Council to host a grand celebration on the King’s coronation. With a diverse range of activities planned for members, including a buffet lunch, games, bingo, and a raffle, the event was an unforgettable experience for all participants.

One of the highlights of the celebration was a sumptuous buffet lunch, offering a variety of sandwiches and buns for members to enjoy. To infuse the celebration with excitement and friendly competition, Peregrine Way TARA had a range of entertaining games for attendees to enjoy showcasing their skills and bringing out their competitive spirit. The group even squeezed in time for a game bingo or two in. As an extra treat, the celebration featured a raffle, offering attendees the opportunity to win fabulous prizes. With the proceeds from the raffle going toward community initiatives, participants can enjoy the thrill of anticipation while also supporting a worthy cause further enhancing the excitement and anticipation surrounding the event.

Peregrine Way TARA’s successful application for King’s Coronation funding paved the way for a truly remarkable celebration. Members of the community had a joyous day filled with camaraderie, delicious food, exhilarating games, and the chance to win fantastic prizes in the raffle. This event serves as a testament to the commitment of Peregrine Way Tara to create memorable experiences for its members, fostering unity and happiness within the community.

The Community Tree

Last year in December 2022 the Community Tree had received exciting news that they had been successful in their funding application to Voluntary Action Rotherham (VAR) for the Mental Health Support Grant. The news was met with much anticipation as the group would now have the funding to create some new social activity within the area. The funding will make a tangible difference to community life for residents.

January saw the re-launch of the Friday craft group, Crafty Coffee, previously known as Woolly Kuddles. The new crafting session offers a wide range of craft activities, with an aim for participants to make something for themselves or be able to gift to someone in need who lives locally.

Flux have supported the relaunch of the craft group with the delivery of their project “Threads That Connect Us”. Participants created patches representing local life with colloquial phrases and saying that mean something to the participants. These patches are then going to be put together to create bigger pieces of work that are going to be exhibited at different venues in Rotherham.

This opportunity has also given the group funds to start a mental health group, the ‘whatever club’. The ‘Whatever Club’ is literally that, a safe space for residents to connect to each other and do ‘whatever’, with the provision of free activities and refreshments

Friends of Dalton, East Herringthorpe and Thrybergh Greenspaces – Easter Event

In a heart-warming display of community spirit, The DEHT group hosted a successful Easter event. The event, run entirely by volunteers, featured an array of exciting activities for children and adults alike, including food, music, raffles and drawing for the children. The event was held in the Warreners Drive Neighbourhood Centre, and it saw a great turnout of people from all over the community. Some of the residents went to Facebook to thank the volunteers for all their hard work and running a great event. “Thank you, Nicola, friends’ family for all the hard work”, “Really enjoyed it, thank you to you all, you’re all super stars”.

The community group managed to raise an impressive £300 from the event, which will go towards funding future community events and initiatives. The group has a long-standing tradition of hosting community events, with successive gatherings held throughout the year. Their dedication and hard work have paid off, as they recently achieved a £500 funding grant from RMBC for the king’s coronation.

Overall, the Easter event was a resounding success, with everyone leaving happy and looking forward to the next community event. It’s heartening to see community groups like this one taking initiative and bringing people together, especially during these trying times. As their attendance numbers continue to grow, the group has even bigger plans on the horizon. On May 7th, they are set to host an all-out celebration in honour of the Kings Coronation.

Thurcroft Big Local – Easter Fun!

By Rachel Cole, Senior Projects Officer

Lots of fun was had by Thurcroft residents at the Easter event on Good Friday.  The event started with arts and crafts in the Church followed by an Easter Egg hunt around the village.  Clues were put on the street names of 24 streets and the children had to find these before finishing at the Miners Institute where they all received an Easter Egg. Over 100 children took part in the Easter Egg hunt along with their families. The day finished with a Punch & Judy show and a magic act from Magic John. Magic John then make a balloon model for each child to take away. The weekend was complete with an Easter Bonnet competition and a disco on Easter Monday. A great Easter weekend for all the community. 

Quotes from the community:-

“Thank you to everyone involved, our kids really enjoyed it”.

“Kids loved it! Thurcroft really does go the extra mile to arrange events for the community, great effort by all involved”.

Bakersfield TARA

Bakersfield TARA has recently received funding from the National Lottery to help tackle social isolation among its members. The group, which was founded around 10 years ago, has been slowly growing in membership and now not only has members over the two sites but has spread into the bungalows around the area. The group holds two bingo sessions per week to members with a subsidised shop.

The funding will allow the group to offer a range of activities that promote physical and mental well-being, as well as social interaction. Chair exercise sessions will be led by a professional trainer and will focus on gentle movements to improve flexibility and strength. A gardening project will provide members with the opportunity to work together on a communal garden, promoting a sense of community and accomplishment and creating a calm peaceful place for residents to relax and unwind.

In addition, the group will organize day trips to local attractions, giving members the chance to explore their local area and spend time together. Finally, craft sessions will give members the opportunity to learn new skills and create something together.

The group’s members are thrilled with the new opportunities that the funding will provide. Many of them are older adults who live alone or have limited mobility, and they have been struggling with social isolation following the pandemic. The new activities will not only improve their physical and mental health, but also provide them with a sense of purpose and belonging within the community.

The group are grateful for the support from the National Lottery and are looking forward to implementing the new activities. They hope that the project will serve as a model for other community groups looking to address social isolation and promote well-being among their members.

Energy Know How

By Sharon Smith and Lynn Clarkson, Community Energy Advisors

I met with Sam at the Social Supermarket at Rotherham Minster. Sam had popped in for a warm, cup of tea and a chat. Sam confirmed that they looked after their partner who had suffered with back problems since they were 17 years old. They were both claiming benefits and Sam confirmed that they were worried about the energy crisis and frightened to use their energy to warm the home. Sam struggled to read and write and suffered angina and diabetes.  Sam’s partner felt the cold in the home exasperated the difficulties they had with pain in their back. I asked Sam if they had any draughts in the home and Sam confirmed that the door and windows did let a draught through.  I therefore mentioned the Green Doctor services and the client was more than happy to be referred for contact by them.  Sam confirmed that they were happy that they were claiming all benefits entitled to them.  I mentioned Rotherham Borough Council Energy Crisis Support Scheme and the client had not heard of this before. Sam confirmed that they had £91 per month left out of their benefits when all necessary bills and essential items had been paid for. I offered to submit a form online to the council for the client for a call back and Sam was delighted for me to do this. The client was happy with the winter warm pack I gave them and said all the items would be very useful. The client confirmed that they were glad they had popped into Rotherham Minster as they were made to feel welcome, listened to and part of the community. Sam thanked Rotherfed for all the information and assistance and was more than happy for me to call them in two to three weeks for an update of their circumstances.

Event day at Riverside House – Citizen Advice Community Fair

By Martin O’Donoghue, Julie Fletcher and Neelam Rhuksar, Making Our Money Go Further Project Workers

K came to the fair with her partner. Not seeking any particular support and probably feeling a little lost, K just by chance, came to the Making Our Money Go Further (MOMGF) table, we began to chat, and K was quite open about how she was feeling, what was happening in her life, at one point K did get little tearful. On the day she felt very alone, low in mood and isolated with her situation.

K and her partner had been in full time work, but due to a recent illness her partner is unable to return to work. Over the past months K’s partner has been diagnosed with an illness that makes it difficult for him to work. (This is life changing, in itself and brings about many worries). K has been on maternity leave but is not able to go back to work.

Their family’s lives have completely changed. A lot of this is out of the control of K and the future looks bleak, for her and her family. They do not know how they will manage financially.

After having a conversation with K, which involved explaining about MOMFG and passing information on, we discovered that she lived near a library that holds a coffee morning and an open arms event, K did say “if she felt strong enough to come along one morning she would.” 

We directed her to the next stall, who could extend the support she needed. (Cortonwood Comeback Centre).

K won the slow cooker on the day of the event, so we invited her to come along to Greasbrough to the open arms on Thursday 9th March 2023.

K came along and this is what she told us –

“Cortonwood Comeback, have helped. My situation has changed in just a short time, and MOMGF you have helped me so much you have encouraged me to reach out and access other services”
“I am Having hot meals at the centre. “ 
“Been out my own, I Feel more confident, and I am Ready to join in more groups”.
“I Would like to join a make do and mend group or upcycling group”.

Maltby Winter Wellbeing Event

By Martin O’Donoghue, Julie Fletcher and Neelam Rhuksar, Making Our Money Go Further Project Workers

Maltby Joint Service Centre is a fantastic community hub that already supports residents with their health, fitness, and wellbeing. Facilities within the centre include the Library, leisure centre, Manor Fields Doctors, Pharmacy and additional NHS referral services.

On Saturday 18 February, Ward Councillors from both Maltby East Ward and Hellaby and Maltby West Ward invited local community organisations to support residents’ wellbeing.

Residents were able to gain advice around the cost-of-living, household budgeting, information on local activities and social group meetings, home security and support from Rotherham Council Employment Solution Team.

Rotherham Federation of Communities (Rotherfed) attended, who offer a free service to Rotherham residents who need advice, support and guidance regarding their personal finances. Rotherfed has supported Maltby Foodbank, as well as groups and individuals within the Maltby and Hellaby area for many years. You can follow this link to view their Maltby and Hellaby, Making Our Money Go Further, Facebook page.

At the event, Rotherfed gave advice ranging from good shopping practice to helping people understand and reduce energy costs. You can find out more information on their dedicated Energy Know How, website page.