surrey

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Combat Food Poverty with the Foodbanks of North Surrey

In the UK, more than 14 million people are living in poverty – including 4.5 million children.

An estimated 8.4 million people struggle to get enough to eat. This includes many households with people in work, families with children, as well as older and disabled people.

There are dedicated community groups in North Surrey taking action to ensure people are able to eat and to address the root causes of people’s difficulties and they need your support. All this week we’ll be highlighting how you can help these organisations and tackle food poverty in our local community.

Between 1 April 2018 and 31 March 2019, the Trussell Trust’s food bank network distributed 148,640 three-day emergency food supplies to people in the South East of England. More than half of these went to childrenFood poverty affects children who lack free school meals during the holidays; parents on low incomes going without food so that their children can eat; working people whose low wages leave them struggling to buy healthy food; or older people unable to prepare meals without support.

An estimated 4.7m people in the UK reported they went a full day without anything to eat at all due to lack of money. Based on these estimates, the UK – the 6th largest economy in the world – ranks in the bottom half of European countries, on par with Hungary and Latvia.

Summer holidays are a misery for parents struggling to feed their children and you can do something about it. No matter where you live in North Surrey you can make a donation to your local foodbank (see details below) or become one of their dedicated volunteers.

Contact alison@voluntarysupport.org.uk for more information about volunteering for a foodbank in your area

Runnymede Foodbank, Runnymede

Manna Foodbank, Spelthorne  Sunbury Foodbank, Spelthorne  Stanwell Foodbank, Spelthorne

Besom, Surrey Heath

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Payroll Giving – a great way to donate to charity

Payroll Giving is a scheme run through HMRC which allows employees to make simple, tax-effective donations to any UK charity or good cause. Employees can give to any organisation recognised as charitable by HMRC.

Employers who pay employees or pensioners through PAYE must set up a Payroll Giving scheme through a Payroll Giving agency, using the list of organisations approved and monitored by HMRC to set up a scheme.

Deductions are made each time payroll is run by the employer, with the donation taken from employees’ pay before tax but after National Insurance. The donations are then sent to the Payroll Giving agency who pass them on to the chosen charities. Some agencies charge an administration fee, although the employee can opt for the fee to be deducted from their donation.

Advantages of making a donation to charity through payroll giving are:

  • charities get more of your donation because giving comes out of your salary after National Insurance, but before tax. This means that you get tax relief on your donation which can be passed onto your charity.
  • charities can rely upon regular donations.
  • reduces administration for charities because donations are made before tax, charities don’t have to claim gift aid.

As an employer, most corporate organisations realise how important Corporate Social Responsibility is, both for their reputation as a responsible business and a good employer. By having a payroll giving scheme, businesses can offer a genuine employee benefit and boost their CSR at the same time. Choosing a charity for the whole organisation to support each year can also be a great employee engagement activity, with additional fundraising events from time to time building team spirit and pride in the organisation.

And finally the good news from HMRC is that employers can deduct any costs of running the scheme from their business profits before tax.

Details on the HMRC website

 

 

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Free Cyber Security Webinar 18/7/19

Three quarters of charities haven’t invested in cyber security, despite 22% of UK charities of all sizes being targeted by attackers last year. 44% of charities aren’t protecting themselves from cyber attacks because they simply don’t see themselves at risk, leaving them vulnerable to costly security breaches (the average cost of a cyber breach to a charity in 2019 is nearly 10k).

But cost shouldn’t be your only concern — funders, supporters and beneficiaries are increasingly asking for charities to show how they are protecting data and taking cyber security seriously. It is increasingly a priority issue for organisations. 75% of charities (vs. 53% in 2018) now rate it as a high priority. Among these organisations, the most common attacks are:

  • phishing emails (80% of businesses and 81% of charities experiencing breaches or attacks)
  • others impersonating their organisation online (28% and 20%)
  • viruses or other malware, including ransomware (27% and 18%)

Many charities are taking action on cyber security as a result of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) but could take a more proactive approach around staff engagement and training:

  • 49% of charities, directors or trustees are only updated once a year or less on cyber security (if at all)
  • Only 29% the staff dealing with charity cyber security have the right skills and knowledge

In a survey, just over half of charities identified cyber security as a key priority, but almost three quarters said they hadn’t invested in cyber security.

A great starting point is to have a look at the Government’s 10 Steps to Cyber Security and for your board of trustees to recognise their responsibilities in protecting information and not merely as in IT issue.

Learn the common cyber attacks and how to spot the danger signs by taking part in the free National Cyber Security Centre webinar https://charitydigital.org.uk/ncsc-cyber-essentials/ on Thursday 18th July.

 

 

 

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The Big Give Christmas Challenge

One donation, twice the impact.

The Big Give runs the UK’s biggest match funding campaign, The Christmas Challenge. For 7 days, it offers supporters of registered UK charities the opportunity to have their donation doubled.

How does the Christmas Challenge Work?

The Christmas Challenge is a match funding campaign where donations to participating UK charities are doubled. The match funds come from two sources – charities secure some of these (pledges) over the summer. These funds are then boosted by funds from a Big Give Champion who contributes to the match fund. This collective pot is used to double donations from online supporters when the campaign is live.

After the campaign in 2018, charities reported:

  • 94% attracted new donors
  • 63% said that current supporters gave more
  • 89% increased their confidence in online fundraising
  • 73% reported an increase in profile having taken part in the campaign
  • 50% said they received a pledge promise from a new supporter

Who is eligible to take part?

You must be a UK-registered charity with a Charity Commission number or tax-exempt status.

Submit Stage 1 Application by 19th July 2019

Complete Stage 2 (Collect your Pledges) by 30th August 2019

Check your eligibility and click here to get started

 

 

CFS website

£1.4 million granted by the Community Foundation for Surrey

The Community Foundation for Surrey announced yesterday that they’ve distributed £1.4 million to support local communities this year.

We’re very proud to be one of the CFS donors making a difference to our local North Surrey community.

Here’s what they had to say in their press release:

“As we begin a new financial year, we take this opportunity to celebrate another year of significant growth for the Community Foundation. The distributed figure of £1.4 million shows the growing community of philanthropic individuals wanting to make a real and lasting difference across Surrey and it’s thanks to these generous donors that we are able to award this level of funding to voluntary organisations across Surrey. This year’s awards have been more than any other year since the Community Foundation was established in 2005.

Over £2 million has been generated for the benefit of Surrey communities. This figure includes new donations into endowment funds as well as the income generated by these longer term funds and made available for grant-making, plus donations provided for immediate grant-making.

Our grants have positively impacted on the lives of 294 voluntary organisation and 151 individuals across Surrey.”

Particularly good news is the Surrey Mental Health Fund, which supports early intervention projects helping young people, has awarded £54,000 to 7 projects in the first round of grants. One of the projects receiving funding was the Prospero Theatre and Beth Wood their artistic director said:

“A huge thank you to the Community Foundation for Surrey for funding Sunnydown in the Community. Through drama and Mind Fitness the boys will learn much needed coping mechanisms and have the opportunity to make real and positive links with local groups”

This fund will be making a second round of grants in July. Have a look at the criteria for application details here

Worried man laying on a table, looking to his smart phone. Bad news and fear. Converted to black and white. Grain added.

Help the Homeless with Spelthorne Rentstart

Sometimes things just happen and you can’t control them. Personal tragedy or sudden change in circumstances can strike any of us at any time and if you fall outside the welfare safety net there is often nowhere else to turn. 

Spelthorne Rentstart help their clients to get a roof over their heads and ensure they have the best chance of maintaining a trouble free tenancy by offering ongoing support for the duration of the lease. Last year they helped 61 new clients into housing and followed up with 1200 existing clients to give further advice and assistance.

Richard says that being a volunteer for Rentstart is “Awesome!! It’s a very rewarding role, you interview people who in many cases are in a difficult, if not desperate situation, sleeping in parks, vans and sofas if they are lucky. Most times it is not their fault nor can they do much about their situation, it is circumstances beyond their control which dictate their position. You can give them hope, direction and support in moving on to find somewhere live. That’s a big thing”.

You could give someone hope.

Rentstart need volunteer interviewers to give advice and assistance to the homeless (or at risk of being homeless) in Spelthorne. They’ll train and support you in all the skills you’ll need to make a real difference at a crisis point in someones life.

Interested? Learn more about the role here.

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