Community Support

A community isn’t just an area of land – a postcode or village, town, suburb or street. It’s people. It’s goodwill. It’s coming together to achieve a shared goal or offer support in a crisis.

It is all of these things and more and in the Stanley area we’re lucky to have such strong bonds that will see us through the difficult situations and emerge a more robust, more united community.

 

 

In my last update, I focused on the outstanding work of PACT House, which has mobilised incredibly since the very beginning of this crisis.  Offering meals and free teas & coffee literally all day with a friendly warm smile.

County Durham Community Foundation
Victoria House
Whitfield Court, St John’s Road
Meadowfield Industrial Estate
Durham, DH7 8XL

Tel: 0191 378 6340
Email: 
[email protected]

Monday – Thursday 9.00am – 5.00pm; Friday 9.00am – 4.00pm

 

Just for Women welcomes all women and young girls, provide support and assistance in a non-judgemental, non-threatening environment that will give each woman the opportunity to be heard and accept the equal worth of each women and value the individually of her life experience.

“We are a community based, independent service dedicated to empowering women and young girls through support, advice and bespoke programs tailored around the women and young”.

  • To be open to all women and young girls
  • To offer counselling and support groups free of charge
  • To focus activities that meet the needs of women and young girls
  • To educate women and young girls through seminars and workshops at the centre
  • Listen, understand and validate women and young girls in a non-judgemental, safe and
    supportive atmosphere
  • Be sensitive to women and young girls choices and life circumstances
  • Respect all differences
  • Enable women and young girls to have a choice through provision of opportunity knowledge and support
  • Partner with other organisations to meet the needs of women in our community

Tel: 01207 281145
Email:
[email protected]

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Strategic Grant Funding for Women’s Centre

A STANLEY safe haven for women who have mental health issues, been subjected to abuse/trauma, or may be suffering long-term unemployment is celebrating a funding windfall to bolster its burgeoning business ambitions.

Just for Women received £620 from Stanley Town Council’s Strategic Grant Fund to buy machinery and materials to support the Crafting to Wellness group.

The new strategic small grants pot, worth £35,000, was launched in 2019 and supports smaller projects via a simple bidding process, administered by Stanley Town Council.

The award will help the not-for-profit organisation, which moved to its HQ St Joseph’s House in 2018, commercialise craft products, that include dolls, bedding and a host of other soft furnishings, produced at its Stanley base.

Just for Women director, Lestryne Tweedy, said: “Stanley Town Council has been an incredible source of support for Just for Women since we were established, most notably last year when it paid £190,000 for the St Joseph’s House building to allow us to continue delivering the vital support we do to vulnerable people in and around the town.

“This money from the Strategic Grant Fund will allow us to further develop the quality products being produced by the Crafting to Wellness group, which has helped many women and men unearth talents that many didn’t know they had.

“This fund is exactly what Stanley needs – it’s quick and easy to apply, very little bureaucracy and, once approved, the funding arrives amazingly quickly.”

Just for Women has helped countless women, and some men, find their feet following abusive relationships, mental illness, homelessness and other issues impacting negatively upon their lives.

Overseen by former social worker, Linda Kirk, who started Just for Women in 2011, the charity has grown from a support organisation to incorporate a business arm and is providing life skills training to people.

Using “crafting” as a form of therapy, it is now a cottage industry for the centre, which sells quilt & cushion covers, soft furnishings and teddy bears to help reduce the need for external funding for its support and training services.

Stanley Town Mayor, Cllr Carole Hampson, said: “For eight years, Just for Women has helped the most vulnerable people in and around Stanley not only find a safe haven, but provide access to training that has created jobs, improved mental health issues and given people a purpose in life.

“Hopefully, this new equipment and material will help Crafting to Wellness continue to develop this fantastic small business and contribute towards making more money that Just for Women can then re-invest in its support services.”

To find out how to apply to the Strategic Grant Fund visit: www.stanley-tc.gov.uk/grants/

Blooming Good Fun Awards 2019

Last night (21st October) Stanley Town Council hosted the 2019 Blooming Good Fun awards, a gala evening to award prizes for the most beautiful gardens, yards and business in the Stanley area and to thank the people and organisations from around the Stanley area who contributed to the Town Council’s first entry of the town into Northumbria in Bloom.

The winners of the three categories were Alan Gleghorn for best garden,

 

Kathleen Gibson for Best Yard, and

Stanley Park Care Home for Best business.

The overall winner was Alan Gleghorn, see below being presented with his award by Town Mayor Cllr Carole Hampson

Speakers included Oliver Sherrat, Head of Environment at Durham County Council, discussing the importance of partnership work in improving the street scene, Nathan Hopkins from the Woodshed Workshop – a social enterprise based in Sacriston which works with people who are long term unemployed, taking mental or other health issues and uses reclaimed materials to make bespoke furniture and Cllr Les Timbey, the Leader of the Council who outlined how working together with residents, charities and community groups had made the project such a success.

At the event, Town Mayor Carole Hampson re-presented the Tanfield in Bloom group with the Percy Boydell Cup for overall winners of Northumbria in Bloom which they won, beating off the likes of Durham City, Hexham, Corbridge and Saltburn-by-the-Sea to take the trophy. Tanfield are competing in the National Britain in Bloom finals in Friday in London and we wish them all the very best.

A raffle was also held for the Town Mayor’s chosen charity, PACT House, which raised £171.

Hedley House Opens Its Doors for Vulnerable Young People in Durham

Hedley House is a supported accommodation project for young people at risk of homelessness in County Durham, to provide safe and secure accommodation when facing difficult circumstances and/or being at risk of becoming homeless.

The project, based in Park Road, South Moor Stanley, is provided by a partnership of Changing Lives, Durham County Council Housing Solutions and Children and Young People’s Services.

The project was officially opened by Councillor Carole Hampson, then Town Mayor of Stanley.

In celebration of the launch, Changing Lives hosted an afternoon tea, which was prepared by the young residents. The event was well attended, with our CEO Stephen Bell welcoming guests from Durham Police, Durham Housing solutions and Durham County Council.

STC – Supporting the Just for Women Centre

In September 2015, Stanley Town Council was approached by PS Dave Clarke who had a vision to turn a junk shop on Stanley Front Street into a community cafe which would provide support, training and mentoring and help to tackle social isolation and a range of issues. The Town Council supported his vision by taking the lease of the building on and that initiative has grown into PACT House, which has been a shining example of how a local council can tactically deploy a small part of its budget to empower and enable a wide section of the community and support volunteering and community led social support by giving them a focal point with security of tenure.

The Council believes this model of supporting key local third sector partners is a model which not only provides support for people at the sharp end where it is needed but also represents incredible value for money. The Council could not possibly have provided a resource like PACT House on its own without spending hundreds of thousands of pounds and had it tried to, there would have been no guarantee that the public would have ‘bought in’ in the way that they have with PACT being an independent locally managed organisation.

Following this model, the Town Council is now in the process of trying to secure a permanent base for the Just for Women Centre. The Just for Women centre is another local success story, providing help and support and therapeutic services for hundreds of local women, young people (and men, through their CREE projects) which have been vital helping vulnerable people who have nowhere else to turn. They also work with young people from both local secondary schools and through the Catch 22 programme. Their current premises are being sold and there is a real risk that the charity and the services it provides could be lost to Stanley if they cannot find suitable alternative accomodation. The programme of austerity that has been in place for nearly 8 years means that many vital services supporting local people have been lost as the statutory providers can increasingly only deal with only those in absolutely dire need. Without services like Just for Women and PACT House, there would be many more in dire need which would stretch those statutory services even further and further squeeze people in need of help and support locally.

An article form the Northern Echo last year gives just some examples of the work that the centre has done locally.

http://www.thenorthernecho.co.uk/news/15671566.A_haven_for_the_desperate___Just_For_Women_Centre_has_been_a_lifeline_for_women_from_all_over_the_region/

Local MP Kevan Jones, who is president of the charity, said “I’m delighted to see that the Town Council are rising to the challenge of using their limited resources to see services provided in Stanley in an innovative way by working in partnership and providing support to third sector providers to enable the community to help themselves and deliver much greater value for money”

This is why the Town is proposing to purchase a building in Stanley to lease to the Just for Women Centre to give them the security of tenure to keep their existing services going and be able to build their programme in the future. We welcome the public’s opinions as to whether supporting local charities to provide services in Stanley is a good approach for the Town Council to take.

Extraordinary Council Meeting 7th November 2017

The Town Mayor has called an extraordinary Council meeting next Tuesday to consider a request for support from the Just for Women Centre. An extraordinary meeting can be called at any time by the Town Mayor, or by two ordinary members of Council to consider a single issue. The agenda is linked below.

‘-ExC Agenda 7 November 2017

ATTACHMENT A – Just for women request – redacted

Request for Volunteers – Cinnamon Trust

The Cinnamon Trust is the national charity whose wonderful volunteers help people over retirement age and those in the latter stages of a terminal illness, by offering all kinds of pet care.

We urgently need dog walking volunteers in Annfield Plain, Stanley for a local residents.  If anyone would like to volunteer we would be delighted to hear from them.
We wondered if you would be able to help us publicise our need for volunteers in the area.  We always need new volunteers so even if you can only spare an hour a week we would love to hear from you.

Please call during office hours 01736 758707 Mandy Scott or email us at [email protected] or check out our website for more details www.cinnamon.org.uk

Registered Charity No: 1134680 The Cinnamon Trust is a limited company registered in England and Wales. Registered Office: 10 Market Square, Hayle, Cornwall, TR27 4HE. Company Number 07004861