In response to the coronavirus outbreak, a local fund set up in Reigate & Banstead has given nearly £20,000 of support to help the voluntary sector.
Residents and businesses are being asked to donate, so that more can be done.
The Community Fund for Reigate and Banstead was set up last year by the Community Foundation for Surrey, Reigate & Banstead Borough Council, businesses and individuals.
The fund relies on donations, with all grants being used to support areas of need within the borough of Reigate & Banstead.
During the coronavirus outbreak, the fund has provided £17,500 in emergency grants to the voluntary sector, with the money going to:
- Citizens Advice Bureau – installation of IT systems so the local CAB can provide more advice to people affected by the crisis
- Generation Church – essential running costs for a foodbank supporting people in the Preston area, in the north of Reigate & Banstead
- Infinity BLOOM – BLOOM mother and baby classes: remote support for parents in Redhill
- Voluntary Action Reigate and Banstead – contribution towards increased costs as the charity co-ordinates and supports hundreds of volunteers who have mobilised
- Family Voice Surrey – contribution towards the salaries of 11 coordinators, which will assist and train parents and carers of children with special educational needs.
However, fund organisers said earlier this month that “much more money is urgently needed to support the mammoth efforts that are underway locally to ensure everyone has the support they need during this crisis”.
Donations can be made via the Community Fund for Reigate and Banstead website.
Fund organisers also said: “The coronavirus outbreak has had a huge impact on all of us, but it has become apparent that the outlook for our most vulnerable members of the community is particularly devastating.
“At the same time, we have had dozens of local charities in desperate situations, having had to close or significantly amend services due to recent Government advice.
“This loss of services is both a risk to the beneficiaries and people of Surrey but also to the groups themselves, many of whom are now looking at severe income losses over the coming months which could jeopardise their future.
“Additionally, there is a range of new local voluntary service initiatives being set up quickly to support the vulnerable members of society at this time by activities such as delivering food and medicines, providing information and telephone contact, and helping with child care for key workers.”