Essex Community Foundation

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High Sheriff presents Awards

19th March 2015

People who have made a major contribution to community safety and crime prevention in Essex have been given well-deserved tributes and thanks at the prestigious High Sheriffs’ Awards ceremony.

A family who have devoted themselves to making Lee Chapel North in Basildon a better place, organisations helping young people in Chelmsford, Epping and Colchester and a rape crisis charity in Southend are among nominees receiving recognition through the awards.

More than 43 voluntary and community organisations were at this year’s ceremony held at Hylands House in Chelmsford and trophies, certificates and grants totalling £23,471, were presented by the outgoing High Sheriff of Essex, Nicholas Charrington DL.

The grants came from the High Sheriffs’ Fund, which is managed by the independent charitable trust, Essex Community Foundation (ECF).

Nicholas Charrington, who is the 834th High Sheriff of Essex, paid tribute to the people of Essex as he came to the end of his busy and successful year of office, during which he met hundreds of volunteers across the county.

He said: “It is estimated that nearly 400,000 people undertake some form of charity or voluntary work in Essex. This dedication and devotion underpins our communities, making for a healthier and safer society. 

“An important part of the role of the High Sheriff is to recognise and promote the voluntary sector, with particular emphasis on those organisations which support law and order and tackle crime and social problems.

“Over the past year I have met such a wide range of dedicated and impressive people who go to extraordinary lengths to make such a difference in their communities.  It is a pleasure and a privilege to help give them the recognition they so richly deserve.

“ECF has been of great value to me during my year of office and the High Sheriffs’ Fund gives much needed support to the organisations helping to prevent crime and promoting community safety.

“During my travels around the county I have realised that the role of High Sheriff is still much respected and although it is an ancient role it is still very relevant today.”

Since it came under ECF’s management in 1997 the High Sheriffs’ Fund has distributed more than 530 grants totalling £435,000 to voluntary and community organisations.

Bob Reitemeier, chief executive of ECF said: “The High Sheriffs’ Fund is a valuable financial resource for the voluntary sector in Essex.  We are delighted to manage the fund and work with the successive High Sheriffs so that greater support can be given to people in the county who are tackling important issues at a local level.”

The High Sheriffs’ Award Scheme recognises community initiatives which address crime, community safety and anti-social behaviour. The office of High Sheriff is an independent non-political Royal appointment for a single year. The High Sheriff receives no expenses and the role comes at no cost to the public purse.

To view a full list of grants and certificates presented on the night click here.

To view and download photographs from the event click here.

To download photographs from our Flickr site:

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Country Living

15th March 2015

Living in the countryside is something many people enjoy. Our villages in Essex are among the loveliest in the country and the beautiful landscape and more peaceful environment make our rural areas very attractive places to be. But for some, the rural lifestyle can be far from idyllic and people in these communities can face problems of isolation, poor access to services and a lack of amenities.

Essex Rural Fund was established in 2009 with the aim of building an endowed fund to tackle some of the issues being faced by local people living in rural communities.  Life in rural Essex was recently featured in Essex Life Magazine and the article, which highlighted the Essex Rural Fund, also featured some of the voluntary organisations which are working in rural communities and have received grants from ECF.  These include Bradwell Community Shop (pictured right), 

To read the article click here.

Santander Social Enterprise Development Awards

6th March 2015

Charities and community groups are being given the opportunity to grow and to develop their capacity to generate their own funds, through an innovative scheme being offered by Santander.

Applications are now being invited for this year’s Santander Social Enterprise Development Awards (SEDA) and the deadline for entries is 10th April 2015.

The award scheme is a national community investment programme to help support growing social enterprise and enterprising charities working for the direct benefit of their community.

The aim is to help charities and community groups to strengthen activities which will increase their income, making them more self-reliant.

Applications can be made for awards of between £5,000 and £10,000 to develop activities over the next 12 months which will bring in extra revenue, whilst helping achieve a social objective. The award can be put towards an existing project or be used to start up a new idea. As well as receiving a financial award, winners will also have access to a business support programme. Capital costs, project costs and salaries related to enterprising work can all be considered under the award scheme.

Applications can only be accepted from registered charities or constituted community groups which are either improving social and community inclusion, supporting disadvantaged people through skills, training and employment or creating a greener environment.

For more details about the awards, including detailed guidelines, visit www.santanderseda.co.uk click here to read the Application Guidelines.