Gosport Voluntary Action gains £384,000 National Lottery boost to help community groups thrive post-lockdown
A HUGE lottery boost for Gosport voluntary groups will help charities to thrive as they open their doors and restart activities and events.
With the easing of restrictions offering a lifeline to many charities and community groups, a light has appeared at the end of the tunnel.
Gosport Voluntary Action has been awarded £384,111 from the National Lottery Community Fund over the next five years, to increase capacity within the voluntary sector and work to ensure local groups are sustainable.
Based in Martin Snape House, Gosport Voluntary Action is the local Council of Voluntary Services for Gosport and is on hand to support groups in a range of different ways, from identifying funding opportunities to helping with policies and procedures.
Ian Reeves, chair of trustees for Gosport Voluntary Action, said: ‘GVA’s members and wider community groups have proven the importance of the local voluntary sector during the pandemic.
‘Recent funding successes will help GVA to continue to provide local support to help its members and groups re-establish and build for the future.’
While some groups adapted well during the pandemic and were able to offer their services online, not all were so fortunate.
A lack of digital technology or skills and confidence in its use meant some activities stopped altogether.
Gosport Voluntary Action hopes to assist these groups to build up their digital capability, with the provision of a ‘Zoom room’ and digital inclusion officer in the coming months.
Other benefits include free use of the service’s well-equipped meeting room facility for groups to brainstorm how they will reopen.
Groups also have an opportunity to book in for a one-to-one session with a member of the community engagement team, who can offer a tailored package of support to meet the needs of each group.
Ted Hill, chief executive, said: ‘The funding comes at a time when demand on services increases as capacity to deliver decreases.
‘As the voluntary sector emerges from lockdown restrictions, like other organisations we are finding our new normal.
‘The funding recently received allows GVA to support the wider sector even more, which of course will have a positive impact on our communities.’
For more information, visit gva.org.uk or call (023) 9258 3836 and speak to one of the community engagement team.