Voluntary Support

Self Help

Mental Health Self Help Interactive Services Guide

Saturday 10/10/20 is World Mental Health Day with the theme of ‘mental health for all’.

Earlier this year we produced a guide highlighting the range of free online services that can be used to relieve stress or anxiety, which you can download here

Why not use this guide to explore and take part in some of the online activities to help you manage your own mental health.

 

 

DEMENTIA

September is World Alzheimer’s Month

The number of people with dementia in the UK is estimated at 850,000.

There are around 540,000 carers of people with dementia in England. Approximately one in three of us will care for a person with dementia in our lifetime.

In our community are a number of small charities supporting people with dementia and their carers.

You can help them by becoming a volunteer or by making a donation:

Spelthorne Dementia Support

Dementia Carers Support Runnymede

Alzheimer Cafe Camberley

Action for Carers Surrey

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The Digital Workplace for Charities

Digital is not something that you do, it is something that you are. It is a set of tools, practices and behaviours that your whole charity needs to adopt.

We have always encouraged small charities with limited resources to embrace digital solutions.

Working at home, social distancing, online fundraising and the offer of virtual services means that a digital workplace has never been more relevant to you than now.

What role can technology play in your charity and what are the best digital options for:

To meet your organisation’s purpose you should make sure all of the digital systems being used are up-to-date, connected to one another and well maintained and ensure your team have a digital skills and inclusion training programme to make the best use of your systems.

This week our social media will cover what you need and what’s available  

Surrey County Council Community Fund

Community Projects Fund

Surrey County Council have announced a new capital fund of £100 million over 5 years to support community projects. The Fund is planned to launch later this year and SCC would like representatives from voluntary, community and faith organisations to take part in a series of workshops, to help shape how the Fund will be managed.

The consultation workshops take place via Zoom on the following dates in August:

  • Thursday 20th 14:00 – 15:30 VCSF groups
  • Monday 24th 14:00 – 15:30 VCSF groups (18:00 – 19:30 Residents)
  • Tuesday 25th 14:00 –  15:30 VCSF groups (18:00 – 19:30 Residents)

If you would like to take part in one of these workshops, please contact matthew.snelling@surreycc.gov.uk

Community Projects Fund (Surrey County Council)

“The Community Projects Fund (CPF) is being designed to bring community-led place-making, or place-improving projects to life. It represents a significant opportunity for investment in communities in a meaningful and lasting way. It is being launched in recognition that communities should feel empowered to help shape their local area and builds on the lessons learned from the Council’s previous community grant fund, but aims to be much bolder, and to invest in large community-led projects in a way that will create a real legacy.

The CPF will provide £100m of capital funding to be allocated to community projects over a five-year period. It is intended to support projects put forward by residents, community groups and organisations that meet a set of criteria, designed to ensure the deliverability and sustainability of the proposals put forward. It will specifically provide capital funding – i.e. expenditure relating to an asset such as buildings, equipment, vehicles, public realm rather than cover revenue costs, such as for the running and administration of an organisation. It is intended to be separate to funding for programmes of work where the Council is carrying out its statutory function.

The Fund was already being developed prior to the COVID-19 pandemic however it takes on new importance in the context of recovery and supporting the rebuilding of local communities and groups that have been affected.

Co-design workshops

Surrey County Council want to ensure the CPF meets the requirements of accessibility and deliverability for all communities and potential applicants. We want to ensure the fund is a success and communities benefit.

The aim of the co-design workshops are to test the grant criteria and process that has been developed with residents and community representatives to ensure they will enable the Fund to operate successfully and do not exclude any parts of the county or groups in the community from being able to access it. During the workshops participants will be taken through the application process; helping us to identify any potential barriers to accessing the Fund, or parts that can be streamlined or simplified. The workshops are also being designed to identify the level of support those putting bid applications together, and subsequently delivering projects may require.

The workshops are being designed in collaboration with Council officers and undertaken by an external provider who will facilitate the sessions. They will take the form of five remote 90-minute workshops, each with 4-5 participants. Three of the workshops are proposed to include representation from the VCFS. Ideally we’d like to identify a range of VCFS organisations – in terms of skills, scale or focus – who would be willing to participate.

The findings and recommendations from the co-design work will be used to inform any changes to be made to the process and criteria as required prior to the launch of the Fund.”

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Lockdown Loneliness

Do you know an older person who is living alone, rarely leaves the house, has recently suffered a bereavement, is in poor health, disabled, has sight or hearing loss, or doesn’t seem to have close family living nearby?

You could ask them if they need any help with tasks such as shopping, posting letters or picking up prescriptions and medicines.  Practical help may be an absolute blessing to them but what if they really need a chance to talk to someone for more than just a few words on the doorstep?  And they want to have a good old chinwag over a cup of tea to cheer themselves up?

During lockdown telephone befriending was a fantastic way to connect isolated people with their community & offered by many national and local groups .  Now with lockdown easing, local befriending services are opening up where possible to offer face-to-face meetings between befrienders and befriendees, socially distanced in the garden, the park or at a café, but now giving that closer contact.

Your contribution could be as simple as a weekly telephone call to an isolated older person, or extend to regular home visits for a chat and to help with shopping.  Read the difference it made to one person below:

“I lost my wife a year ago and had given up on most of the clubs and things we used to do together, so when lockdown happened in March I had already run down the number of friends we used to be in contact with.  We never had kids so I’ve no family local, just a couple of brothers up north.  It hit me really really hard not being able to go out – although I’m 80 I still enjoy walks and wandering round the town centre.

Suddenly I found myself totally isolated from everyone it felt.  The only contact I had for the first month was when the council arranged for food parcels but I felt so lonely and sad by myself. Everything on the tele was about the virus, virus this virus that, it made me really anxious to even go in the garden.

Then the lady from the council suggested me having a befriender to phone me each week. I didn’t want to at first but then I began to enjoy the calls. I don’t have a computer so we just talked on the phone, me and the young lad. Didn’t know what he looked like until things got easier with lockdown and Jack came over and sat in the garden with me.  Can’t tell you how great it is to have that to look forward to each week.  He stays quite a while, sometimes more than an hour, but it’s not difficult to fill the time.  We talk about all sorts of things and laugh a lot. “

There are a number of local charities offering befriending services if you know someone who needs support or you would like to volunteer:

Runnymede: Runnymede Befriending Service

Spelthorne: Age UK Surrey

Surrey Heath: Time to Talk and Surrey Heath Age Concern

15 sec without words

The 15 Second Bounce

Charities must diversify their fundraising strategy, raise their digital profile, increase their supporter base and generate online donations – an out of date website and ignoring social media is not an option.

Your website should be the centre of your communications. Visitors to your site are interested in the people you help, how you help them and how they can get involved.

Please remember that donors fund people not organisations.

You have 15 seconds to capture a visitor’s attention – this is called the 15 second bounce. In those 15 seconds you must stir emotion, empathy and invite engagement.

Menu Options: You should have no more than 5 menu options with short, call to action words:

About    Get Help    Get Involved   Contact Us   Donate

Mission statement: The message on your home page must be simple and immediate ‘We’re ending homelessness and rebuilding lives’

Fundraising: It must be obvious to the donor who you are fundraising for. Donors and funders will check your site to see what you do with your money. Tell beneficiary stories and have project pages with images and totals raised. Keep pages and interest fresh by updating regularly.

Donations: Your donate button should be in the top right of your website and visible on every page. The button should be a different colour from other menu options. No more than 3 clicks to donate from anywhere on your site. Where possible offer different donation values and tell the donor what their money buys.

Tell Stories and Use Images: Site visitors want to hear about real people and their lives. They want to hear stories and quotes from volunteers and beneficiaries about how your intervention improves lives and makes a difference. If you have vulnerable beneficiaries, try copying the image creativity of larger charities to get around the problem of showing faces. Don’t bury your stories deep in the website – they should be easy to find.

Calls to Action: Every web page, email, Tweet, Facebook post should have a call to action – donate, volunteer, contact, support, sign up, share.

Mobile Friendly: Google penalises websites which don’t display well on mobiles or tablets. In 2018 25% of all online donations were made on a mobile.

What are you for? Who do you benefit? Where are they? Show faces and tell stories. You have 15 seconds before I bounce.

FB live streaming

Livestreaming Charity Events

Charities are using livestreaming for fundraising events with great ingenuity and success.

Event Ideas:

Has your charity had a successful event that could be made virtual or could you try something new? ow.ly/4ywM50Ae06N 

Choose the right platform:

Facebook Live – people have and use Facebook accounts and are more likely to find your event because they are on the platform anyway http://ow.ly/eYiM50AfgoO

Twitch – known as a gaming platform it has increasingly been used for charity fundraisers an allows fundraising goals and rewards for donations http://ow.ly/paSE50AfgoM

YouTube – best and least technical option with built-in features including a virtual tip jar for donations http://ow.ly/awoT50AfgoL

Zoom and other meeting platforms – connect and communicate with clients, donors and supporters http://ow.ly/Y1KJ50AfgoK

Sell Tickets:

The most effective platforms can help with ticketing, marketing, bookings, payments and donations, giving out essential information about the event http://ow.ly/RtXr50AhzD2

Use Subtitles:

90% of people watch videos with the sound off. There are free online tools such as Clideo, Adobe Spark to add titles to your videos and YouTube also generates subtitles.

Call to Action CTA:

Tap into the energy from your event to inspire people to take action. Tell them what do you want them to do – buy tickets for another event, donate, volunteer, sign up, share on their social media?

St John’s Ambulance have a great guide on livestreaming your event http://ow.ly/rEcK50AfgoN

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Donate to foodbanks in Runnymede, Spelthorne and Surrey Heath

Local foodbanks need your support with donation of non-perishable food or a financial donation.

Runnymede: 

Runnymede Foodbank

Food donations to any of the food bank centres or at 95, Guildford Street, Chertsey.

Make a financial donation via their Virgin Money page link on the Runnymede Foodbank website.

Spelthorne:

Community Foodbank – Sunbury and Shepperton:

Food donations to Saviours Church, 205 Vicarage Rd, Sunbury-on-Thames TW16 7TP.

Contact: community@stsaviourssunbury.org.uk

Make a financial donation to the Community Foodbank on the St Saviour’s Sunbury Community Foodbank website

Manna Foodbank

Food donation points https://www.mannafoodbank.co.uk/where_to_donate_

Contact: Jean Pinkerton on 07770 478778 or info@mannafoodbank.org.uk

Make a financial donation to (please ensure your donation is referenced ‘Foodbank’ or ‘Manna Foodbank’):

HSBC Walton on Thames,
PCC of St Mary & St Peter
sort code 40-52-40
acc number 00033500

Stanwell Foodbank 

Donations of food to the The Pavilion, Cambria Gardens, Stanwell, TW19 7ER

Contact Anna-Marie Goodacre on 07429 584286 or info@stanwellfoodbank.org.uk

The Salvation Army – Ashford

Donations to be placed by the main door at the Community Centre, Woodthorpe Road, Ashford, TW15 3HY.  Food bank opening hours 9am – 12 midday from Monday to Friday.

Contact : Cath Maughan on 01784 423424 or staines@salvationarmy.org.uk

Financial donations by cash and cheque should be sealed in an envelope and posted through the letterbox. Anyone requiring a receipt should include their name and address in the envelope.

Surrey Heath:

Besom Food Bank

Non perishable food donations to High Cross Church, Knoll Rd, Camberley GU15 3SY

Financial donations via the High Cross Church Camberley website.

seo-1288976_1280

SEO to increase website visitors and donors

Search Engine Optimisation helps your website perform better in search engines like Google.

SEO is important because good SEO practices improve the usability of your web site and your visitor’s user experience. You’ll get discovered by the right people more often, allowing you to grow your base of supporters and donors.

Users trust search engines – if your site is in at the top of a search for the keywords used by your visitors, they will have more trust in your site.

Many small charities face 2 problems – not enough website visitors and the ones who find you are not engaged enough to stay.

So how can you improve your SEO?

  • Regularly updated, quality, relevant content
  • Identify and use your target keywords
  • Use Google Search Console
  • Use Google Analytics
  • Ensure your site is mobile-friendly
  • Use a plugin like Yoast
  • Fix 404s

The higher your google ranking, the easier your website will be to find. You’ll attract more visitors and persuade them to donate and support you with an interesting and attractive, navigable site – easy!

https://analytics.google.com/analytics/academy/course/6

https://truenorthsocial.com/seo/how-to-choose-seo-keywords-for-your-business/

https://search.google.com/search-console/about

https://www.quicksprout.com/best-seo-plugins-for-wordpress/

https://www.classy.org/blog/7-seo-tips-nonprofit-cant-afford-ignore/

https://charitydigital.org.uk/topics/10-essential-charity-seo-tips-to-get-your-website-found3-6168

https://whitefuse.com/blog/7-steps-mastering-seo-your-charity-website

social proof fb

Use Social Proof

The Rule of Social Proof: ‘If others are doing it, it must be the right thing to do.’

92% of consumers worldwide trust recommendations from friends and family above all other forms of marketing. People care about what others think and you can use that to attract new donors and supporters.

Tell the stories of your beneficiaries and supporters in text and pictures. A good story will spark emotion and empathy in your reader and persuade them to answer the call to action on your donate page. Images in the online world increase engagement by 313%. Not everything can be expressed with words, but nearly everything can be explained with visuals. Pictures help us relate to content, which will increase credibility and trust in your cause.

Use numbers on your website donation page. Show the number of people who have already given or who have fundraised for you to motivate visitors to donate. Tell your readers your total so far if you have a target amount to raise, this inspires them to help you reach your goal.

If you’ve received positive mentions from credible media sources, influencers or publications, put them on your website as well as key quotes from experts. Don’t forget to include social media buttons on your website pages to demonstrate broad support for your organisation and so people can easily share your content.

The internet has made social proof a powerful way to influence social behaviours.  By building and increasing the visibility of social proof for your cause, you more clearly demonstrate the value of your organisation to prospective donors and fundraisers.

https://zapier.com/blog/power-of-empathy/

https://www.globalgiving.org/learn/listicle/photography-tips-for-fundraising/

 

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