BS3 Community Development are proud to have achieved a significant impact on the lives of many BS3 residents.
During Covid, we supported people with buying basic necessities, maintaining social contact with others, and with their day to day struggles. The cost of living crisis now presents us all with another challenge. In response, we are building on our work by strengthening community support networks, helping people to access local services, and ensuring that everyone in BS3 can experience activities and social events that make them feel part of a community.
Read on below for more information on the success of our 5 key projects; Bedminster Food Club, Monday Club, Community Connector, Social Prescribing, and Digital Inclusion.
BEDMINSTER FOOD CLUB
We have seen the impact of the cost-of-living crisis, as demand has increased hugely for our Bedminster Food Club service, which provides subsidised fresh produce and storecupboard items for residents on low incomes. 2,000 food boxes have been provided so far this year, and membership has been increasing dramatically over the past few months, reflecting local need for affordable, healthy food. We now have nearly 70 members as of October 2023, and are looking for further funding and a space to be able to expand the service and help more people.
We would like to say a huge thank you to Bailey’s of Bristol and the National Lottery Awards For All, who have funded the continuation of this vital service.
THE MONDAY CLUB
Monday Club drop-in sessions run every week at the Southville Centre. The session includes free hot drinks provided by our cafe, The School Room, along with an activity of the week, and an optional two course lunch available by donation.
From 2022-23, over 500 lunches were served as part of Monday Club, and members benefitted from a range of activities, including Qigong, singing, bingo, and quizzes.
When asked, 100% of our Monday Club members said it made them feel less isolated, and that they had made new friends through Monday Club.
One member commented, ‘It feels like family. When I volunteered, I stayed close with everyone and checked in, it makes you feel more connected and everyone looks out for each other. It feels like it’s always been a part of my life. It’s a lifeline for loads of people, we look after each other – it’s a necessity.’
Engagement with one of our groups often leads people to join another, with one member saying ‘I don’t know how I managed before, I’d be lost without it. It’s connected me to other clubs that BS3 Community does; on Tuesday, I go to the walk and talk group, on Wednesday bingo, on Thursday games night. I come here for the friendship, company, the friendly, jolly people. And the Dominoes games.’
COMMUNITY WEBS – SOCIAL PRESCRIBING
We have worked with Pro Bono Economics to assess the economic impact of our Community Webs social prescribing programme. Pro Bono Economics’ report found that there is a positive correlation between receiving social prescribing and positive effects on an individual’s health, well-being and level of loneliness.
BS3 Community has taken part in some groundbreaking research exploring the benefits of intergenerational activity for pre-school children undertaken by Lois Peach of the University of Bristol. Click here to read the research outline, Click here to read the research summary.
BS3 Community CEO, Dr Simon Hankins contributes to blog examining the need for social prescribing to be reimagined to bring the real change health and social care need.
We were delighted to receive funding from St Monica Trust to run a series of digital inclusion sessions, helping over 55’s to get online and feel more confident using digital technology. We have been really pleased with takeup on the course so far, and will share our report here when the project comes to an end this Winter.
Community Connectors have been working with local residents across South Bristol, to help connect people into relevant support services as well as creating events and activities for the whole community to enjoy.
We have supported over 200 people, many of them older of vulnerable. We have worked directly with residents to find out what matters most to them and helped get community led projects off of the ground. With activities ranging from accessible yoga, art and craft workshops, community singing and clothes swaps there is something so everyone to get involved in.
We were delighted to receive funding from the Quartet Cost of Living Grant. The funding has now come to an end, but for Autumn 2022 – 2023 the grant allowed us to:
- offer free soups and sandwiches, as well as free hot drinks, to those using our centre as a warm space
- host citizens advice mornings at our centre twice a week
- host a shared lunch to celebrate the Platinum Jubilee, welcoming 35 local people to an event with food, live music, and a raffle
- top up our FareShare deliveries for food club, ensuring a protein rich meat-free option and plenty of food for everyone as demand increased
Thank you to our generous and collaborative funders for supporting our work. We are currently running some projects that are unfunded, which we are in need of further funding to continue. Do get in touch with us if you would like to speak to us about funding our work. You can contact our fundraiser at firstname.lastname@example.org
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