UK Shared Prosperity Fund

Volunteering/Social Action

Logo: UK Government Levelling up.

We have funded the following 9 projects to provide volunteering and social action opportunities in Southend as well as signposting/advice/guidance and specialist support for established business, new starts and start-ups within Southend.

Below is a summary of current UKSPF funded projects which are running until the end of March 2024.

Cake Club: Parenting support groups

Cake Club is a grass-roots community-led charity. It works to support parents in the Southend area.

We run in-person support and playgroups in venues across the city, with something on offer almost every day of the week.

Our focus is on providing evidence-based support to families:

  • during pregnancy
  • throughout their parenting journey

There is an emphasis on:

  • responsive parenting
  • a focus on infant feeding
  • perinatal wellbeing

Peer support is at the heart of what we do, encouraging parents to support one another and developing our growing team of volunteers. This helps to provide increased levels of skilled support in various aspects of parenting. Some parents may come to our groups to socialise and enjoy a coffee, and a sit down while their child plays. Others may need more specific and in-depth support.

Everyone is welcome.

For more information visit the Cake Club website.

Garon Park: In2Volunteering at Garon Park

Garon Park are offering volunteering opportunities in four areas:

  • horticulture and conservation
  • site maintenance and general activities
  • sports and wellbeing
  • sports, woodworking and construction

To find out more visit the One Southend website.

Home-Start Essex: Building stronger futures in Southend

Volunteers in this project will be provided with training. This training will be appropriate to their role and will be issued by local staff.

Volunteering opportunities will be available in a variety of different roles:

  • volunteer parent mentor
  • placemaker
  • event chaperone
  • community link volunteer
  • community ambassador

Volunteers will be helping to improve the lives of Southend families, helping their young children to flourish.

For more information on the project please visit the Home-Start website.

Indirock: Springboard into work with volunteering

Indirock is a family-run bouldering wall and popular coffee shop in the heart of Southend.

Our indoor climbing walls can be used by all ages. Pre-schoolers enjoy our soft play sessions twice a week. Anyone aged 6 and above can enjoy our walls any time.

This project will provide volunteering opportunities to three different groups:

  • young people with neurodivergence and special educational needs
  • young people and adults on probation from prison
  • low-income families within Southend

They will be able to volunteer either at the Indirock climbing wall or café. Indirock aim for volunteers to develop skills to access paid employment.

For more information visit the Indirock website.

Southend museums: active volunteering with heritage

This project will be delivered across Southend Museum’s cultural buildings.

It aims to support a wide range of people from our local community by:

  • unlocking newly created volunteering opportunities
  • supporting an increased number of community focused events

For more information visit the Southend Museums website.

Southend YMCA: Y’s mentoring project

The Y's mentoring project will match 40 trained volunteer mentors with young people aged 9-16 years old. The volunteers will help to support them to:

  • improve their well-being
  • build confidence
  • increase their self-esteem

Over a 12-month period, the mentors and young people meet regularly and work together to identify achievable goals. These goals that will empower the young person to build their resilience. This will help them to lead fulfilling lives.

Southend YMCA will use the UKSPF funding:

  • to continue delivering Y’s Girls
  • to expand our mentoring offer to provide additional mentoring spaces for boys through the Y’s Mentoring programme

For more information visit the SYMCA website.

Deyton Bell: Southend Business Lift-Off

This project will offer five different services to entrepreneurs in Southend. Deyton Bell will provide a triage service to entrepreneurs to identify their needs and the best routes to meet these.

  • pre-start will be supported to assist aspirational entrepreneurs to develop viable business ideas
  • new start-ups will be supported with the development of businesses less than 12 months old
  • early-stage businesses (1-3 years old) will be supported with development

All entrepreneurs will receive ongoing pro bono support for the following 12 months. This will be in the form of a peer group and helpline.
For more information visit Deyton Bell’s website.

Let’s Do Business Group: Finance advice for business.

This project will provide support to small and micro businesses.

An expert business advisor will support the business in planning for and accessing finance to help sustain and develop.

The support is available for up to 12 hours free of charge and provides 1-2-1 support with:

  • the development of action plans
  • the creation of financial forecasts
  • possible access to finance
  • taking steps for moving forward

To find out more about this project visit the project website.

Southend City Council Economic Inclusion Team: Southend Business Navigator

The newly appointed Southend Business Navigator will aim to continue the great work of the BEST Growth Hub in Southend.

They provide businesses with support. This is in the form of signposting to the appropriate help where available.

The service is available to contact online or by phone and the Business Navigator will also contact local businesses to advise of business support on offer.

Contact UK Shared Prosperity Fund (UKSPF)

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