From advice to families visiting prisons to making food more accessible for all, find out more about some of the amazing projects we have funded in Wales in March.
Prison advice and care
With the help of a £9,973 grant, Prison Advice and Care Trust (PACT) in Cardiff will provide ongoing peer support and advocacy for families affected by incarceration.
“We are delighted to have received this funding to create a new peer support and advocacy group for families in Wales that have a loved one in prison. This funding will bring families together so that they can receive support, and support one another. This project will reduce isolation and loneliness amongst these families, and help them to support their loved ones in prison to make a fresh start.”
Nadia Emblin Pact’s Head of Service Delivery & Development for Wales
Out of the Box Creative Media
Out of the Box Creative Media in Rhondda Cynon Taf will use £2,500 to work with autistic people and people with learning difficulties to make a short fictional film; bringing participants together and helping them to increase their skills. Working with professional actors and volunteer mentors, Out of the Box Creative Media is planning a comedy film called Diamond Gal.
One participant, Luke Thomas, aged 20 said, “I am very excited to work on this movie; I am really looking forward to it. It’s a once in a lifetime chance to have a go at some directing and working with proper actors.”
A grant of £39,587 with contribute to Little Lounge in Rhondda Cynon Taf helping to combat food poverty and food waste by renovating and expand its community pantry and eco food shop. They will also provide workshops and training for the pantry members and the wider community.
“I am one of 16 volunteers at Cilfynydd Community Pantry. I have been part of the Little Lounge team since before and during the pandemic. Often roping in my 2 children to put a smile on people’s faces and to show my children how good is it to not waste food and that way we help the environment.
On average the food helps 130 local people every week. This includes myself as a single parent and my two children who eat me out of house and home. For just a suggested donation of £2 you can feed your family healthy meals from the ingredients we get at The Pantry. The pantry is accessible to everyone no matter what your income or status, it’s an Eco Project so there’s no poverty stigma involved. It has definitely brought the community together especially through the pandemic when people couldn’t leave the village or go to shops.” Rhiannon, volunteer at Cilfynydd Community Pantry
Ashley Caff in Torfaen will use £10,000 to support vulnerable young people to build independent living skills and support them to secure their own tenancies to live independently. Sessions will enable them to feel like part of the community and include skills such as cooking nutritious meals on a budget, managing money, DIY and keeping up with housework.
Victoria Waters, Youth Worker said: “This project will help empower young people as young as 16 to live successfully and happily in their own homes. The importance of this is second to none and being able to provide a project of such importance is amazing.”
The Melody Makers
The Melody Makers in Caerphilly will use £4,436 to rebuild and expand their women only choirs that were adversely impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.
“The Melody Makers struggled coming out of the pandemic. We lost a lot of our existing members both directly and indirectly as a result of COVID-19 and our rehearsal space. Now with the help of National Lottery funding our future looks set to be a success. We have already welcomed new members to the choir and look forward to performing and supporting within our community once more.” Ruth Rollings, choir member and Fundraising Officer
Grangetown Nursery School
Grangetown Nursery School in Cardiff will use £10,000 to create a community café which will offer social and educational activities, and projects to address food poverty.
“We are proud to be working in partnership with the Big Bocs Bwyd initiative and creating a number of projects inspired by the vision to reduce food landfill and distribute food to the local community. As part of this initiative, we are teaming up with local charity ‘United2Change Cymru’, who are creating wonderful opportunities for young people and their families in the Grangetown community to learn, socialise and come together.
“Grangetown has so much heritage and culture. We want to create an outdoor cafe where we can celebrate this richness of culture and diversity; a place where people from all walks of life can enjoy healthy and affordable food and drink – that doesn’t cost the earth but may make it a better place to be.” Justin Mills, Teacher
Image: Children and staff from Grangetown Nursery School and members of United2Change charity in our Big Bocs Bwyd (food sharing project). The community cafe will be situated next to the Bocs, near our allotment and community orchard.
Blossom Education Ltd
Blossom Education Ltd will offer free online antenatal and postnatal classes for women across Wales with a grant of £9,600.
“The work we started during the early days of lockdown has shown us that by attending classes new families are able to become more confident around birth and early parenting. Supporting families in small online groups enables them to join a closed digital community and remain in contact after the course building friendships and reducing isolation. This, in turn, improves mental health and all of this has a far-reaching impact beyond that of the immediate family. After the two difficult years of COVID-19 and the financial difficulties we know families are experiencing this support is more vital than ever.” Clare Castell, founder of Blossom Antenatal
The Trinity Project
The Trinity Project in Cardiff will offer a range of gardening activities to teach people about organic gardening, seasonal cooking, and sustainable arts and crafts, thanks to a £10,000 grant. Participants will include families, students, asylum seekers, refugees, and people experiencing mental ill-health.
“We are delighted to have been awarded this National Lottery Awards for All grant. Funding will enable us to continue to support community-based learning and opportunities for knowledge exchange about organic gardening, seasonal, nourishing cooking, and sustainable arts and crafts at our community garden here in Cardiff. This year we will be running twice weekly volunteer garden sessions, a series of arts and crafts workshops and monthly outdoor play sessions for local families focused on child-led play and nature-based connection. Our aim is that these activities will strengthen our local community, enhancing health and well-being and providing opportunities for intercultural and intergenerational understanding and exchange.” Poppy Nicol, Project Coordinator
St Vincent de Paul Society
St Vincent de Paul Society (England & Wales) in Cardiff will use £9,868 to install a commercial kitchen and storage area, to support families experiencing food poverty due to COVID-19. It will also create a lunch club for isolated older people.
“We at the St Vincent Centre, Ely Bridge would like to thank The National Lottery Community Fund for the grant. Its generosity will enable us to thrive post-COVID-19 and make a real difference in our community. We can now develop our food outreach programme, clothing provision and undertake cooking classes and open a community café right in the heart of our community. The difference this funding will make to us and the community is enormous and will help change lives.” Nathan Harding, St Vincent’s Centre.
Oak Hill ASD Childcare
Over 3 years, Oak Hill ASD Childcare in Newport will use a £69,968 grant to provide recreation and care for children with additional and complex needs. The services and facilities will be available during school holidays and out of school hours.
“Oak Hill ASD Childcare is Newport’s first ASD specific Summer Holiday Club childcare. Based in the Ysgol Bryn Derw ASD special school on the Gaer in Newport, we aim to offer quality childcare to children with Autistic Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and complex needs during the summer holidays.
“As a parent of a child with profound autism and complex needs, I was well aware of the difficulties of finding suitable activities and childcare for children like mine. My son, and children like him, require a high level of support – one to one or more – and specialist training – something mainstream childcare facilities are not set up for. With the help of Jane Weale and our other trustees, we have been able to set the club up (during a pandemic) and have provided quality play-based childcare provision during four different school holidays in the last year. We are now focused on the summer of 2022.” Gwen Vaughan, Chair of Trustees
Minds Under Development
Minds under Development (MuD) CIC in Swansea will use £9,980 to offer natural outdoor mindfulness/forest bathing sessions to individuals and groups including people who have been classed as high risk during the COVID-19 pandemic. The sessions will help to relieve stress, anxiety, and rumination, as well as providing improvements in physical health.
“The funding will help us to share the incredible wellbeing and health benefits of Mindfulness in Nature with everyone in the community’. Sarah Lomas – Co-Founder of Minds under Development
Deal Me Out CIC
Dealmeout CIC in Conwy will spend £10,000 to deliver a pilot programme for women affected by gambling addiction, both their own, and others close to them. The programme will build resilience and confidence.
“The Patchwork Programme is a women-led peer support project, set up to empower women to come forward and talk about their experiences relating to gambling harms. Whether this be through addiction or as an affected other. The project has been set up to help pave the way for service provision to be adapted to the needs of women, whom to this day are greatly under-represented in gambling-related harms recovery and support.
“With our pilot project in Manchester well underway, we are so pleased that we have secured funding to be able to deliver this in Wales. Our women’s only programme will be a unique combination of easily accessible remote support services, a chance for women to connect with others who have experienced gambling-related harms and allows participants to take part in new hobbies and interests and restore their confidence and to learn new skills.” Beth Thomas – Head of Support
These are just some of the amazing projects funded in March 2022 with over £1 million of money raised by National Lottery players. Download the full list here.