Big Lottery Fund: big support for YORKS young people with THE stress factor

A Barnsley project that helps young people learn to deal with stressful situations is one of 10 projects across Yorks and Humber celebrating a much-needed injection of Lottery good cause cash today, totalling over £1.1 million.

The funding comes from the Big Lottery Fund’s Reaching Communities programme, which aims to help those most in need and build stronger communities.

Hope House Church in Barnsley receives £65,850 to run a series of courses to teach young people how to cope with stressful times, such as exams, family breakdown, bullying and job or money worries. Young people will initially have their needs assessed and the courses will be tailored to suit them. Sessions will include life coaching, motivation, interview practice, cognitive behaviour therapy and muscle relaxation techniques. These will be run at a variety of different community venues so they are accessible to everyone.

In addition, outdoor stress busting activity days will take place to help the young people cope with stress and learn to deal with challenging situations. Activities will include climbing, abseiling, canoeing, team building and archery. The young people will also be encouraged to become peer mentors and support other young people going through similar situations. Courses will also be delivered to parents, mentors and schools to develop skills and raise awareness of stress management strategies. A written guide will also be produced and distributed to schools and other community organisations to provide information on stress management.

Sarah Davey of Hope House Church said: “We are really excited to receive funding for our Stress Factor project, which we believe will give young people the strategies they need to manage stress in a positive way and to live life to the full. Our project will also help parents and those who work with young people to feel more confident in supporting them with their stress issues.”

Also receiving funding this month is Grewelthorpe Village Hall and Community Centre, which has been awarded £442,404 to convert a rundown former Methodist Chapel into a community centre that will be at the heart of the village and provide a focus point for all future community activities. A wide range of educational and social activities will be on offer and the hall will also be used as a base for vital services that aren’t easily accessible in this rural community that has limited public transport. The refurbished hall will have two levels and include a community café with IT facilities, a kitchen, a large meeting room, toilet facilities and an office.

In Sheffield, Support Arts Gardening Education (SAGE) has received just under £196,000 to provide a series of gardening and therapy sessions to improve the emotional, physical and social wellbeing of adults who are experiencing mental health problems. Clients can be referred to the project by their GP or by local councils or projects. On arrival they will have an induction to help them get to know people and make them feel comfortable as part of the group. They will then have a one-to-one meeting with a member of staff to talk about the goals they would like to achieve during their time with the project.

As well as the gardening, participants can also take part in ‘cook and eat’ sessions, using organic produce to promote healthy eating, arts and crafts activities, literacy and IT lessons and ESOL classes for people with limited English. There will also be day trips to places of interest and participants will be encouraged to get involved with local community and leisure groups to continue to improve their health and wellbeing and potentially get the opportunity to take part in volunteering and further training, or even gain employment.

Also receiving funding this month is Voluntary Action – North East Lincolnshire (VANEL), which will also support people with mental health issues using its £145,000 grant. A community development worker will work with individuals who are experiencing mild mental health problems such as anxiety, depressive episodes and phobias due to factors including redundancy and debt. A programme of counselling will then be offered, which will include confidence building, training and volunteer placements within the community.

Cognitive behaviour therapy courses will also be available and volunteers will be trained to deliver the courses and support new users. The development worker will also work with the North East Lincolnshire Independent Forum for Mental Health, to raise awareness, identify common issues and needs, and help people with mental ill health s to come together to have their voices heard.

Vanessa White, Head of Region for Yorkshire and the Humber, said: “The work of these fantastic groups means that people across Yorkshire will have somewhere to turn when they are going through a particularly difficult time and don’t know how to cope. It is projects like this that help to make communities much happier places to live.”

Organisation Beneficiary Locations Amount
YWCA England & Wales Doncaster £299,991
Northern Refugee Centre Sheffield £291,894
Support Arts Gardening Education Sheffield £195,959
Home Start (Hull) Hull £110,997
Voluntary Action – North East Lincolnshire North East Lincolnshire £144,728
Hope House Church, Barnsley Barnsley £65,850
Ward Green Primary School Barnsley £74,678
Grewelthorpe Village Hall and Community Centre Grewelthorpe £442,404
Wintringham Community Hall Wintringham £30,750
Bempton and Buckton Community Village Hall Bempton £6,000


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Notes to Editors

The Big Lottery Fund (BIG), the largest distributor of National Lottery good cause funding, is responsible for giving out 40% of the money raised for good causes by the National Lottery.
BIG is committed to bringing real improvements to communities and the lives of people most in need and has been rolling out grants to health, education, environment and charitable causes across the UK. Since June 2004 BIG has awarded over £4.4bn.
The Fund was formally established by Parliament on 1 December 2006.
Since the National Lottery began in 1994, 28p from every pound spent by the public has gone to good causes. As a result, over £28 billion has now been raised and more than 383,000 grants awarded across arts, sport, heritage, charities, health, education and the environment.