South West Community Benefit Fund: Roots Community Enhancement

About this project

Roots is a Community Interest Company, based in Dawlish, South Devon. It was established in 2018 and is ran by one part-time mental health nurse and twelve volunteers. Roots run various community projects, including several groups for babies, toddlers and their parents, groups to support those experiencing grief and loss, and groups who’s aim is to improve the health and wellbeing of participants.

Roots strongly feel that local people needing support should be able to access services without any financial concerns. As many services in Dawlish and surrounding areas have been cut or reduced, there are clear gaps which Roots is aiming to fill. Most of their groups and services are free, they just ask for people to donate a little when they can afford to.

Request for funding

Roots requested a grant of £1,000 to support their “Thinkers Anxiety Café” project, for a period of twelve months. The group is highly beneficial to those who attend, who can share the impact of anxiety on their lives, reconnect with others and find opportunities in their community to flourish. Participants learn about anxiety tools, which help them to manage day to day and generally build on hope for the future. Since attending “Thinkers”, a number of participants have moved from being unable to speak in the group, to thinking about greeting and supporting others and even becoming volunteers for Roots themselves. Participants have shown that there is a clear ongoing need for the group.

The group has ten original members, and the grant will allow for a further ten places. Each of the members who attend have families, who have been very concerned for their family members, so the effect of the group is wider than just the person attending.

Meeting the aims of the fund

The organisation clearly meets the criteria of the fund by increasing community facilities, providing much needed free and low-cost services to local people and their families. Roots offers significant opportunities and support to those most at risk from social isolation, providing a vital lifeline to many people in Dawlish and surrounding areas.

The purpose of the fund

SWPA work with our members and South West Community Matters to distribute grants of up to £1,000 to local projects and causes.

The overall aim of the programme is to increase community facilities and community benefits particularly for those most in need, in local communities.

The focus is on activities that enable people from diverse backgrounds to become engaged in their neighbourhoods and communities and to support those organisations that are bringing about real change to the lives of the people who live in those communities.

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