Community Links Bromley report highlights the fantastic work undertaken by local charities during the pandemic
A Community Links Bromley (CLB) Impact Report highlights the fantastic work undertaken by local charities and community groups in response to the ongoing pandemic and describes some of the activities undertaken with funding from the Direct Line Group.
Last year, the Direct Line Group approached Bromley Council with a generous offer to provide emergency funding for voluntary and community groups and organisations in the borough who were facing unprecedented challenges as the COVID -19 pandemic grew. As a trusted partner, Community Links Bromley was approached by Bromley Council to manage the grant process in an equitable way to ensure a wide variety of the borough’s community and voluntary organisations benefited from the funding.
The scheme was launched on 1 May with a grant pot of some £170,000. The scheme offered grants of up to £10,000 to support organisations working in Bromley that were either delivering COVID-19 front line services, or whose operations had been disrupted by the measures put in place to stem the COVID-19 pandemic.
Applications were considered by a panel which included input from Bromley Council. The grants were distributed to 38 groups of various sizes covering a range of services across the whole borough.
The report summarises how the grants have been spent and the positive impact that the funding has had on the organisations and the communities that rely on them. In brief, many thousands of vulnerable people and their families have been supported during what have been especially challenging times for both them and the organisations. Groups adjusted their programmes, staffing and delivery mechanisms swiftly in order to provide help and assistance where other more formal routes may have been difficult to access. Many of the organisations have freely admitted that without the grants from Direct Line they would have been unable to respond in the way that they have.
Christopher Evans, Chief Executive of Community Links Bromley said, “We were enormously grateful to the Direct Line Group for providing the funding to the sector during this difficult and extraordinary time. It is fantastic that they recognise the essential contribution that our voluntary, community and faith sector make to the health and wellbeing of the borough’s residents. This significant investment provided a lifeline for many small local charities, and importantly, the communities they serve.”
He continued, “The grants helped to support the mobilisation of volunteers across the borough from Mottingham to Biggin Hill, from Penge to the Crays. They enabled organisations to refocus delivery models and engage in new and innovative ways. Importantly, the grants provided much needed support to enable the supply of food to families throughout the pandemic via the TBB Food Partnership, St Edwards Church in Mottingham, the Central Eltham Youth Partnership, Living Well Bromley and other providers”.
Yvette Speed-Sustainability Executive said, ‘Direct Line Group are proud to partner with Community Links Bromley. As well as providing finance via our Community Fund to help provide grants to the most vulnerable, we’re supporting the charity with important messages to our 10,000 colleagues via the company internet, about the fantastic work the charity do in the communities where we live and work.’
About Direct Line Group
Direct Line Group (DLG) is one of the UK’s leading insurers providing general insurance products to customers through a number of well-known brands including Direct Line, Churchill, Privilege and Green Flag. Its Head Office is based in Bromley.
Notes for Editors:
Community Links Bromley (CLB) is the CVS (Council for Voluntary Service) and Volunteer Centre for the London Borough of Bromley. CLB was established in 1965 and is a membership organisation that supports, promotes and facilitates the development of a strong, diverse, confident and effective voluntary, community and social enterprise sector, in ways which will enable the sector to improve the quality of life for people and their communities.
We have around 260 voluntary and community groups in our membership. These vary considerably in size and scope, ranging from small volunteer led and run community groups to large organisations, all providing services to significant numbers of local people.
Christopher Evans, Chief Executive