A charity delivering independence and support throughout the North East has secured a £100,000 Covid-19 helping hand from a major community aid programme launched by Barclays.
Supportive, based in Ferryhill, County Durham, has been chosen as one of Barclays’ UK charity partners to receive cash aimed at those working to support vulnerable people impacted by Covid-19, and to alleviate the associated social and economic hardship caused by the crisis.
Part of the North-east community for 26 years, Supportive has been working on the frontline in the fight against Covid since March and will use the cash to enhance welfare services across its three main areas of operation: homecare, volunteer drivers and patient transport ambulances.
CEO John Davison said: “We are delighted to receive £100k from Barclays and we will use the donation to make a positive contribution to people’s lives during the Covid pandemic.”
The money is being distributed as part of Barclays’ £100m Community Aid Package announced in April, to support charities helping people and communities most impacted by the pandemic. Alongside a colleague-matched fundraising initiative and £10m pledged through their 100×100 Programme, Barclays is donating funds to charity partners across the UK, Americas, Asia and Europe to ensure help reaches those who need it most. In the UK, where the bank has made 100 donations of £100,000, these partners include those who are meeting the immediate needs of low-income families, those facing financial hardship, isolated elderly people, NHS staff and key workers.
Supportive has been chosen for its work across County Durham and the wider North-east, where its services include:
- Homecare, with 12,000 visits a year delivered by 120 care staff, including end of life support;
- Volunteer drivers, with 100,000 journeys covered each year supporting NHS visits and local authority services, and
- Patient transport ambulances, providing more than 17,000 hours of support in the last year.
The Barclays 100×100 UK Covid-19 Community Relief Programme money will be used by Supportive to:
- Enhance welfare services which were established at the start of the pandemic to support customers, volunteers and staff. The additional contact is already having positive results;
- Offer additional support to homecare customers to minimise social isolation. Carers will be able to spend additional time to chat, support with appointments, give additional care, support with shopping and, when permitted, take trips out in the community;
- Continue to support volunteer drivers, who have been provided with Covid safety screens that fit between front and rear seats and safety boxes containing PPE supplies. Volunteers provide a service supporting vital journeys and the charity aims to welcome more fully equipped volunteers to the service;
- Use technology to increase service effectiveness and reduce Covid risk, and
- Enable patient transport teams to provide additional support where wheelchair transport is needed.
Paul Howell, MP for Sedgefield, said: “Funding like this is so critical for organisations like Supportive that are embedded within and hold our local communities together. Their efforts are largely unseen to many within the community but for those that know them they are a critical lifeline. I am so pleased that Barclays have chosen to support them.”
Andrew Thompson, Barclays business manager, said: “This crisis has had an unprecedented impact across the UK and we know this is an incredibly challenging time for many in the North-east. By reaching those most in need of support, local charities such as Supportive have played a vital role in this crisis to date, and no doubt they will do going forward. As a proud member of our community, we are doing everything we can for our customers, clients and colleagues, and we hope that our partnership with Supportive will allow many others to access the help they need as this crisis develops.”