Second year CMHWB funding update
24/01/2023 (Engage Post )
Half a million to be distributed to local groups and charitable organisations supporting adult mental health outcomes
A second round of community based adult mental health funding, totalling £504,837, has now been assigned to charities, social enterprises and community groups across Renfrewshire.
The second year of Renfrewshire’s Communities Mental Health and Wellbeing Fund was announced by Scottish Government in September 2022 and funded projects will support adult (16+) mental health through community based activity and supports.
Originally a national response to COVID, local groups were invited to propose projects that would support people to reconnect post-lockdown. Projects supported are all non-clinical and prioritise early intervention and prevention as an approach to mental health. They aim to capture people before they reach a point of crisis.
In total 59 projects have been funded this year, with funding amounts ranging from £600 to over £30,000. All projects and activity will take place this year and the fund administrators, Engage Renfrewshire, are excited to see how this second year of funding will boost new activity and develop existing supports.
Last year’s funding supported activities ranging from art classes to woodland walking groups; from women’s wellbeing workshops to community cricket sessions.
While some projects have received a second year of funding to develop their work, the majority of second year projects are new to the fund.
One such group are the Renfrewshire chapter of Dates’n’Mates, a national programme that supports adults with learning disabilities to find friendship and build trusted networks.
“The effect of Covid cannot be underestimated on the learning disability community.” said Janie Waddell, Regional Lead for West of Scotland. “An already isolated and lonely group of individuals saw their services cut or reduced. The recent cost of living crisis has only exacerbated the situation. This funding will make sure we can offer these people a chance to meet new people, make new friends and build lasting relationships. It will give them the chance to become active participants within their communities, rather than silent bystanders.”
Fund Officer, Alice McBride, of Engage Renfrewshire, is excited to see the second year of funding after a successful first year. She explained “this second round of applications has been and even harder process, with more groups applying than year one and so much good work already demonstrated from 2022. It’s clear that there is still a lot of need out there but we’re excited for these newly funded projects to develop, to grow and hopefully have long reaching impacts for the people of Renfrewshire.”
Though a lot of this year’s funding has gone towards activities there are also programmes that focus on increasing community knowledge and resilience. One such programme is from Jambo! Radio, a Renfrewshire based digital radio station run and aimed at ethnically diverse communities across the West of Scotland.
Coordinator for Jambo! George Tah is excited about the outreach work their funding will create. He explained “This funding will support Jambo! Radio’s volunteers working on our mental health programming to do more community outreach work including explaining and offering translations of local services in different languages, community engagement, support, and signposting people to the appropriate services.”