Local charities receive £85,000 boost from Tampon Tax

Posted on: February 8, 2019

Content originally posted by www.essexcommunityfoundation.org.uk

Thirteen local charities working with some of the most vulnerable women and girls in Essex have received a much-needed funding boost from the Tampon Tax Community Fund.

The Fund, which was set up by the Government with money raised through the levy on sanitary products, is managed locally by the independent charitable trust Essex Community Foundation (ECF).

Grants totalling £85,000 have been awarded to local voluntary and community organisations to help them develop or expand their work with women of all ages, focussing on preventative services for those at risk of crisis.

Projects receiving support in this first round of grants are aimed at helping women and girls to improve their health and wellbeing, create and develop social networks and get into or back to work.

Among the organisations to receive funding are:

  • Parents 1st: £7,800 to run a ‘pregnancy pals’ project in Basildon that provides vulnerable pregnant women with a volunteer for support.
  • Open Road: £5,800 to help women on probation from prison across Essex to rebuild their lives and reduce the likelihood of reoffending.
  • Ark Family Resource Centre: £6,194 to expand their support service for women and families in Harwich that have experienced domestic abuse.
  • Home-Start Essex: £5,381 to expand a peer support group for mothers in Harlow. (pictured, right)
  • Southend Vineyard: £8,336 towards the salary of an outreach worker to help women exit the sex industry.

Southend Vineyard will use their grant of £8,336 to employ an outreach worker for ‘The Promise Project’.  This community-based scheme runs a drop-in service for women and girls who are being exploited through prostitution, providing a safe place where they can have a warm meal and receive support.

Rob Carvosso, the Project Manager, said: “Southend Vineyard has been working with the local community for over 23 years.  During the drop-in, we offer a range of support including making appointments at sexual health clinics, referrals to counselling and other recovery treatments for drug and alcohol abuse.”

Home-Start Essex was awarded £5,381 to expand a peer support group for mothers in Harlow focussed on improving their mental and physical wellbeing. Nic O’Brien, chief executive, said: “We offer a range of activities including art therapy, sessions on mindfulness, information about healthy eating and importantly, group discussions on any issues they are facing.

“We also provide a crèche where the children can play, allowing the mothers time to focus on their own wellbeing and forge valuable friendships.”

Parents 1st received £7,800 to continue their ‘pregnancy pals’ project for vulnerable women in Basildon. This includes exercise classes to promote a healthy lifestyle and pairing women with volunteers for support during pregnancy, labour and the first few months of their baby’s life.

Celia Suppiah, chief executive of the charity, said: “It can be incredibly daunting to have a baby when you don’t have a support system. The women we help, due to a range of circumstances, may feel isolated and unsure of where to turn to for help. Having just one person in their corner that they can talk to, makes a huge difference to their emotional and physical wellbeing.

“Our peer support scheme builds positive, trusting relationships where women can feel valued and listened to, rather than judged for their circumstance.”

Caroline Taylor, chief executive of ECF, said: “The grants awarded from the Tampon Tax Community Fund will enable these 13 voluntary organisations to expand and increase the support they offer to some of the most marginalised and vulnerable women and girls who are living in communities across Essex.

“We know there are many other local charities offering support to women and girls and we would encourage them to contact us if they have are in need of funding.”

Author: Steering Member
Categories: News

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