Five Jersey charities are celebrating the safe future of key projects after winning at the Barclays Wealth Community Awards last night. Grace Trust, Jersey Cheshire Home, Headway, Jersey Women’s Refuge and Brighter Futures were all presented with the financial awards last night at the Pomme d’Or Hotel. They were chosen out of a record number of 53 entries. Barclays Wealth had intended to give away £25,000 in total but the judges felt that the projects were so deserving that they increased the funding to £38,000 in total, with £31,500 going to five project winners and the remainder being split between an additional six projects. The five key projects which are being supported are as follows. Grace Trust works with poor and marginalised families and individuals with the aim of offering them practical help in as many ways a possible. As part of this, Grace Trust holds “Saturday Lunches” which often attract 40-65 attendees every weekend. Volunteers cook and manage the meals, which are of a high standard, and for many the type of meal they would be unable to cook for themselves. Individuals who attend the lunches are from a variety of backgrounds and can be homeless, depressed, lonely or addicted; all of whom get to enjoy a healthy meal and good company. The money secured through the Barclays Wealth Community Awards will fund these lunches for one whole year. Jersey Cheshire Home will use the funds to complete work already undertaken to improve access to the home and retain a secure environment. This is a three part project, the first part of which was to install an automatic door opener to allow wheelchair bound users at the home unimpeded access to the dining room, without relying on able- bodied individuals to open and close the door. The second part of the project is to equip the front door of the home with a “swipe card” access system, thus improving security. And finally the third part of the project is to mechanise the remaining two doors into the home’s dining room that would further improve access and self reliance for wheelchair users in particular. Headway Jersey will be using their grant to establish a craft workshop which will enable members to relearn old skills or learn new ones. The project has already been trialled and has proved a success with a number of members producing good quality goods such as cushions, aprons, bags and handmade cards. These are all sellable to help offset costs. The members will also be able to repair incoming goods for resale in the Headway charity shop. In order to develop this project Headway will purchase sewing machines, additional equipment and materials. The group is currently using old machines that are not fit for purpose and breakdown regularly. The scheme, the charity believes, will be of significant benefit to members’ rehabilitation. Jersey Women’s Refuge will use their share of the money to implement a new project called “Just What We Need”. The project aims to support women and children to meet their emotional needs, develop peer support and personal well being. The project will run four times per year, each consisting of twelve sessions, aiming to help women build confidence, recognise their needs such as security, attention, connection, status and achievement. Women who have experienced domestic abuse often suffer from low self esteem and loss of confidence. This new project will equip them with the knowledge to explore healthy choices and to develop their inner resources. By assisting women in their own wellbeing, research shows that they are more able to recognise and meet the needs of their children who can then have an equal opportunity to achieve their own full potential. Brighter Futures works with individuals and families facing significant life challenges and who are extremely vulnerable. By placing members on the “Journey Into Wellbeing”, Brighter Futures can support individuals in self management by allowing them access to the Quiet Place Sanctuary. In the Sanctuary they can learn new techniques to reduce stress and anxiety helping them to gain better self awareness. Following completion of the course, members are closely monitored to ensure that they can transfer their new found skills to the home environment. The funding gained will ensure that The Sanctuary can continue to operate and offer these key services. The additional six projects that received smaller pledges included Meals on Wheels, Jersey Society for Deaf Children and Young Adults, Milli’s Child Contact Centre, St John’s Youth Project, Gorey Youth Club and the Youth Inclusion Project. Paul Savery, Country Manager of Barclays Wealth Jersey and Channel 103’s Spencer Davies hosted the awards ceremony last night. The evening was not just about the presentation of the awards but was also an opportunity for all the entered charities to get together. Mr Savery, who was also on the judging panel, was overwhelmed by the number of entries and the quality of community work undertaken in Jersey. ‘We had a really tough job deciding between the applications,’ he said. ‘There are so many amazing projects which offer services in the community that for many people are essential. I am delighted to pledge the extra funds to enable a total of eleven projects to be supported. The Community Awards are only one of the ways Barclays Wealth supports the local community and they generate massive engagement and interest throughout the Island.’ -(ends)-