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Sefton launches 2018 Children’s Access To Food scheme

Sefton Council is pleased again to launch the annual Children’s Access to Food Programme, supplying nearly four thousand hot meals to those in need.

The scheme, which is now in its third year, helps to support families across Sefton who are most in need of help and hot meals, allowing them to end a reliance on school meals to help nourish their children.

Last year 3,981 meals were served in community centres across the borough during a six week period between July and August.

In addition to children’s centres, Sefton Council is working in partnership with Sefton Council for Voluntary Service (CVS) to co-ordinate additional access to food with local Voluntary, Community and Faith (VCF) sector organisations across the borough.

Sefton CVS have also published a crowdfunding initiative aimed at raising valuable funds to support the scheme, and are also asking for volunteers to offer their services throughout the period.

Cllr Trish Hardy, Sefton Council’s Cabinet Member for Communities and Housing said: “This is a very important service to provide and year on year, we help people who would otherwise struggle to put hot food on the table.

“Following last year’s scheme we had feedback from one mum who said that without this service, she would have had to miss paying bills to accommodate the extra cost of feeding her children during those six weeks.

“During the scheme we often see a clear reduction in families requesting food vouchers, because they were able to access free meals.

“The huge increase on last year shows that there is a need for schemes such as the Access To Food Programme and we are delighted that we are once again able to help and support those families that are most in need within our communities.”

Angela White, Chief Executive of Sefton CVS said: “We understand that the summer holidays can be an extremely challenging time for some families.

“We are pleased to be working alongside Sefton Council to offer a coordinated response to meet the needs of our local communities.”

Those eligible for the scheme will be contacted shortly to inform them of their nearest children’s centre.

To volunteer call 0151 920 0726 or email info@volunteeringsefton.org.uk.

Hundreds of volunteers help launch Green Sefton

Hundreds of volunteers turned out to help celebrate the launch of Green Sefton on World Oceans Day (June 8).

Litter picks and waterside clean-ups were held across the borough ahead of a special launch event at Crosby Coastal Park to welcome the formation of Green Sefton, a brand new team to help keep Sefton clean, green and beautiful.

Clean-ups were held at Southport’s Marine Lake, Ainsdale Beach and the Brewery Lane stretch of the Leeds-Liverpool canal.

Green Sefton brings together Coast & Countryside, Parks & Greenspaces, Flooding & Coastal Erosion, Risk Management and Grounds Maintenance teams all together to ensure a joined up approach to the vital management, development and oversight of Sefton’s beautiful coastline, parks and green spaces for years to come.

Residents had the chance to meet the Green Sefton team who explained the work they will do, from land management and community engagement to vital work surveying the changing shape of Sefton’s coast and what this means to residents and visitors.

Cllr Ian Moncur, Sefton Council’s Cabinet Member for Health and Wellbeing, said: “We want to to say a massive thank you to all the community groups, volunteers and green-fingered helpers who came out to help on World Oceans Day.

“Sefton is a clean, green and beautiful borough that is internationally recognised for its natural beauty and we will build on this through the work of Green Sefton and working closely with our volunteers.

“Green Sefton has been created to make sure we continue our focus on a collaborative approach to the management, development and oversight of our beautiful coastline, parks and green spaces.

“We believe this will also encourage more community cohesion, more involvement with our volunteers and residents, as well as eco organisations.”

For updates on Green Sefton events, activities and partnership opportunities, check out Sefton Council’s social media channels.

Consider becoming a School Governor during Year of the Volunteer

Sefton Council is encouraging residents across the borough to consider becoming a School Governor as part of National Volunteers Week.

Serving as a school governor is a significant way of making a difference to your local community through what is both a challenging and rewarding role.

Now, as part of Sefton’s Year of the Volunteer campaign and National Volunteers Week (June 1-7) the Local Authority is encouraging a new generation of governors to take up the distinguished role.

Cllr John Joseph Kelly, Sefton Council’s Cabinet Member for Children, Schools and Safeguarding, said: “Becoming a school governor is a great thing to do, especially during the Year of the Volunteer.

“An ideal govenor has a committed interest in our children’s education, a desire to make a difference to their communities and the ability to work as part of a team.

“As well as attending meetings of the full governing body and committees with special duties, such as staffing, governors are encouraged to visit their school to see at first hand the different activities under discussion.

“There is no requirement to become directly involved day to day but many governors choose to visit their school to gain a greater understanding, perhaps by taking an interest in a specific subject or non-academic aspect such as safety.”

For more information or to apply to become a school governor visit www.sefton.gov.uk/beagovernor.

Atkinson to put the spotlight on volunteering heroes

Sefton residents will be able to find out more about hundreds of volunteering opportunities across the borough at an upcoming event in Southport.

Volunteer Centre Sefton will be holding a Volunteer Fair at the Atkinson on Lord Street in the town from 11am until 3pm on Wednesday 6th June, as part of Sefton Council’s 2018 Sefton’s Year of the Volunteer initiative.

Volunteer Centre Sefton – which is part of Sefton CVS – has more than 40 years’ experience of helping local people to find the right volunteering roles, as well as offering advice to organisations who are looking to recruit volunteers.

Information on a wide range of opportunities will be available at the Volunteer Fair, from groups seeking green-fingered residents for gardening projects to organisations looking for people who can support families in crisis or ex-offenders.

Organisations attending the event will include the Friends of Kings Gardens, literacy charity Beanstalk, Leonard Cheshire Disability, Southport FC, the Orrell Trust and Sefton Community Learning Service.

Representatives will also be attending from Citizens Advice Sefton, Parenting 2000, Home-Start Southport and Formby and Merseyside Offender Mentoring.

Mike Howlett, Volunteer Centre Sefton’s Senior Citizenship and Volunteering Officer, said: “At this event we’ll be looking for people to join our existing volunteers in the borough who do such a fantastic job in terms of helping to improve the lives of thousands of local people.

“As well as being a good way to meet new people, volunteering can be tailored to the lifestyle of each individual – what you do, where you do it and how much time you give is totally up to you.

“We’re hoping for a very good turnout at this Volunteer Fair at the Atkinson. Our message to everyone is that communities across Sefton need your knowledge, skills and commitment.”

* Anyone unable to attend the event who would like information about the opportunities on offer can get in touch with Volunteer Centre Sefton on 0151-920 0726 or email info@volunteeringsefton.org.uk.

Volunteers needed to bring junior parkrun to Bootle and Formby

Parkrun UK wants Sefton’s most enthusiastic volunteers to lend a helping hand to help bring the junior parkrun to Bootle and Formby.

The junior parkrun is a series of 2km events aimed at young people aged 4-14. These runs are held in open space and are free, safe and easy to take part in.

If you’re interested in sports or youth volunteering this could be a fantastic opportunity to make a real difference in your local area.

If you’re interested in becoming a parkrun volunteer or would like more information, get in touch with lesley.neary@parkrun.com

To find out more about parkrun UK visit http://www.parkrun.org.uk/

 

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