Trustee Week – Come join us, it’s not just for your committee and board

We are very excited to bring you the Support Cambridgeshire Trustee Week, happening between the 8th and 10th of November, National Trustees Week in the UK.

As part of that, we are hosting four events across three days which are aimed at upskilling and broadening the knowledge and understanding of those who drive are part of the strategic vision of our Voluntary and Community Sector.

Each event is open to anyone who wants to know more, and most are passive, with the option to ask questions of some fantastic professionals. This is an excellent opportunity to engage your ​board and committee in upskilling, which supports their development in making the right decisions for your organisation. However, we are happy to have you if you’re a volunteer, member of the public or staff member interested in the subject.

These events are open to any organisation, however small or large, that works within the county of Cambridgeshire and the city of Peterborough. We thank those who have supported us in offering this event timetable.

Day One – What it is to be a Trustee 

This event is perfect for the current trustee or committee members who need a recap of their responsibilities. It is also perfect for new committee and board members who want to know more. We also welcome those working within the VCSE who want to know more about the role of a charitable Trustee or committee member.

Day Two – 101 Day

In the morning, we have Insurance 101, which will allow those on board​s to grasp the types of charitable insurance on offer and ask professional questions. This includes trustee insurance which covers those on boards for liability.

We then have DBS 101 in the early evening, another topic that those making decisions about the organisation’s direction need to know. For example, what is a ​data barring check, why is it needed and do your volunteers and staff need to have one?

Day Three – Who’s the Boss? 

Getting on Board is supporting Support Cambridgeshire to host this exciting event which looks at the role of the Chair and what makes the relationship between Chair and CEO work. Open to all to come and listen to some fantastic and talented speakers to talk through this relationship and how chairs and CEOs take this further.

Some events will be recorded, but this is the only opportunity you will have to ask questions of the professionals we have pooled together. We, therefore, suggest you book your place as soon as possible.


Want to know more and how to book click the button below.

Click here to book

Cycling UK / Funding to deliver cycling projects / 10th October

Grants available: Up to £3,000

Deadline to apply: 10th October (Applications are reviewed weekly every Monday)

Who is the funding for? Voluntary groups, social enterprises, and other not-for-profit organisations

District: UK

Link: The Big Bike Revival | Cycling UK

About: Grants are available for voluntary groups, social enterprises, and other not-for-profit organisations to deliver cycling projects and activities across England for people who do not normally cycle. This objectives of the fund are as follows:

  • Encourage people who don’t cycle to cycle.
  • Encourage people to cycle more often.
  • Increase short cycling trips.
  • Improve the perception of cycling safety.
  • Improve people’s confidence to cycle.

The Big Bike Revivial will support events and activities that use the ‘fix-learn-ride’ model to provide sessions on fixing unused or broken bikes, learning sessions such as maintenance workshops or cycle training/upskilling, or offering low milage-led rides on local routes to build up the confidence of participants. There is a particular interest in reaching new people, including groups who are underrepresented in cycling or face challenges and perceived barriers to cycling, such as:

  • Women.
  • People on low incomes.
  • People who identify as belonging to an ethnic minority group.
  • People not meeting physical activity guidelines.
  • People with perceived barriers to cycling.

Two levels of funding are available:

  • Grants up to £1,500 for the delivery of five events or more that focus on at least one element of the fix-learn-ride model.
  • Grants of up to £3,000 for the delivery of ten events or more that focus on at least two elements of the fix-learn-ride model

The deadline for applications is 10 October 2022.

Guidance notes and application forms are available from the Big Bike Revival website here.

easyfundraising / £1,000 third sector giveaway / Register by 31st October

Grants available: £500 to one organisation and £100 to five organisations.

Deadline to apply: 31 October

Who is the funding for? Any third sector organisations

District: Nationwide

About the grants:

To help ease the hardship the third sector is facing, easyfundraising is giving away £500 to one organisation and £100 to five organisations. To be in with the chance of winning, register with easyfundraising by 23:59 on 31 October 2022. If your organisation is signed up already, you can still enter by raising three donations between 1st and 31st October.


They and over 7,000 brands want to give back to local groups and communities, so when someone shops at one of the brands, easyfundraising shares a percentage of what they’ve spent with your organisation for free. For example, if a volunteer did their food shop at Sainsbury’s, their first home delivery shop would generate £6 for your organisation. After that, every weekly shop would generate £2. So in a year, your organisation would receive £108 – for free.


There are huge benefits of joining easyfundraising;

  • It provides a continuous, free, and unrestricted funding source for all third-sector organisations.
  • An easy and inclusive way for people to give without it coming directly out of their pockets.
  • It requires little time and effort to manage so you can carry on with what’s really important.

We don’t want our organisations to miss out. Be sure to enter the giveaway by 23:59 on 31 October 2022 and start making use of this fantastic fundraising option. Particularly as we head into the busiest shopping period of the year – it’s a great way to top up your funds.

Sign up and enter the competition here:

Cost of living warm spaces / Cambridge City / Closing unknown

Grants available: up to £1000

Deadline to apply: Applications remain open until further notice.

Who is it for? The funding is for small projects and will support warm spaces, community meals or other local, community led initiatives that will make a real difference in tackling the health harms caused by cost of living crisis this winter.

District: Cambridge City district

About the grants: Communities across Cambridge have a difficult winter ahead, with the ongoing cost of living rises and new energy cap, there is a real possibility that households in Cambridge may come to harm due to the reality of choosing to eat or heat their homes.

These micro-grants of up to £1000 can help fund small projects and local community solutions. Projects such as providing warm spaces or community meals, or other local, community led initiatives that tackle isolation and the health harms caused by the cost of living crisis this winter and build community connections.

The projects must meet these minimum requirements:

  • Be deliverable between October 2022-end of March 2023
  • Make a difference to those most at risk / those struggling due to the cost of living crisis
  • Be delivered within Cambridge City district boundary
  • Prevent potential health harms

The fund is simple to apply for, express your interest using this online form  and someone will be in touch within 10 working days.

For more information contact:

Volunteering : Do we need Passport or Passporting?

Following the Connecting Communities Conference, there was a keen interest in learning more about the concept of Volunteer Passports and how moving people around organisations could be possible.

With that, we invited Gethyn Wiliams to talk through the theory of Passports and give space for groups and organisations to explore the ideas of how or if this could be something Cambridgeshire VCSE could be up for.

Below you will find the slides, recording and notes which followed the presentation, which was part of the event on the 20th of September 2022.

Next Steps

Thank you to all those who attended and took part, at this stage the Support Cambridgeshire team are not sure where we go with what came out of the event and thank you to all those who are intrested to know and be part of future conversation, if you where unable to make the event but would like to be kept in the loop of the event please email 



VCSE Health Alliance Group update – Sept 2022

The VCSE Health Alliance group met again on the 14th of September to update the members on the progress the ICS and VCSE have made over the past couple of months, and in particular, to agree on a plan to utilise funding received from the ICS covering some important issues within the voluntary sector;

  • Partnership Development 
  • Securing Funding and External Investment – 
  • Tackling Inequalities

The meeting was chaired by Julie Farrow, CEO of Hunts Forum and was held at The Commemoration Hall in Huntingdon.  We had good representation again from across the VCSE sector.

Julie opened the meeting by updating the group on the progress of the ICS VCSE Strategy.  The Strategy was completed by the deadline of 30th June and sent to ICB for approval.   Unfortunately, due to the number of papers at that board meeting, the Strategy was pushed back to the next board meeting.

Julie confirmed that the Strategy had been agreed upon in principle, and thus we are to continue and work from it.  NHS England has given it the green light and hopes it will be approved at the next ICB meeting soon.

Julie also updated the group following an expressed interest for volunteers representing the voluntary sector on identified boards and committees.  These were forwarded to the ICB Governance team and had only recently responded; thus, the VCSE sector hasn’t been represented at any of the boards that met in the last month or so.  This will hopefully be resolved moving forward.

So the positive news from the meeting surrounded the fact that Hunts Forum has received £200k funding from the ICS to help the VCSE sector focus on and develop the following key projects;

Partnership Development – System, Place and Neighbourhood

Julie explained an initial allocation of £100k (this can be amended and split differently between the other two projects) to look at how the voluntary sector continues to embed itself in the ‘system’; how the VCSE plan to work in place & finally, who within the VCSE is involved.  Julie proposed that we recruit somebody to write an update for the sector, i.e., who are the key partners, what makes up the finances, and which unfunded projects added value.  This was agreed in principle by those present.

Securing funding and external investment – how sustainable is the VCSE sector?

This project is all about identifying gaps and opportunities to tender for additional funding from external fundraisers.  £50k has so far been allocated for this project.  Julie confirmed that the project would be more focused on pulling together collectively as a sector and working collaboratively to see how we can lever in additional ‘resources’ to add ‘added value to the health system.  It was suggested that Julie invite Nicci Briggs, Chief Finance Officer at the CPICS, to understand the financial structure within the ICS to one of our future meetings.

Tackling equality – encouraging the broadest possible involvement

£50k has been allocated for this project.  This project looks at social capital, mobilising what is in place and tackling funding inequality.

NHS England additional funding

It was also highlighted that Julie had also secured an additional £10k funding for developing branding and communications for the Health Alliance group.  This money will also be used for internal communications and provide consistent access to information on who’s doing what in representing the VCSE on boards and committees and sharing feedback on key comments and actions arising from those meetings.

Actions points that rose from the meeting

  1.  Julie to organise an online session to address the concerns many members had experienced in the lack of voluntary sector participation at various ‘health’ meetings.  In particular, this session will address what value health meetings put on the voluntary section due to the fact that VCSE issues aren’t currently included on the meeting agendas.  If you are interested in attending, please email
  2. All members agreed to forward ‘content’ that can be uploaded and shared via a regular newsletter to all members detailing key activities, events, and feedback from attending the various health boards.
  3. A few members expressed concern over their commissioning contracts, particularly the delays in renewing their contracts with many charities forced to operate ‘as a going concern.  Julie offered to send a letter signed by CEOs expressing their collective concerns direct to the CPICS.

Any other business

It was suggested that future meetings alternate between face-to-face and virtual. Therefore the next meeting will be online.  Any requests for a change of location or area for face-to-face meetings should contact

Support Cambridgshire Impact Report- June – August 2022

Below you can see an infographic highlighting the impact of the Support Cambridgeshire partnership between 1st June 2022 and 31st August 2022.

If you wish for this information not in infographic form, please contact

Support Cambs Infographic Quarter 3


How our Community Engagement Lead rose to the challenge in Fenland

As hundreds of thousands of elderly people start to receive their autumn coronavirus booster vaccine this week, Debbie Drew, our Community Engagement Lead Fenland, talks about the challenges and barriers she faced in setting up the vaccination programme in the Fenland region.

As Debbie says, ‘I was employed to look at vaccine hesitancy and uptake in Fenland, particularly with the Eastern European Community and the Homeless. To enable this, two local organisations were engaged and funded to provide workers. Ferry project had one full-time worker, and Access Migrant support had a Latvian / Russian speaker and a Lithuanian speaker’.

‘Having these two organisations on board helped break down some of the barriers (particularly language for me) as they already had a trusted presence in the community.’

‘The project did various things over the year but included a lot of engagement with businesses. Often the workers in the businesses have the information we needed, particularly issues arising and general feelings towards a vaccine.’

‘Since March this year, we have been investigating places where we could bring a roving vaccination team to the different communities. This was either by hiring a room or bringing the vaccination vehicle to a site. Therefore, I spent time visiting all the four market towns (and some villages) to see where we might get a good response’.

‘I found a suitable venue in Chatteris, and the first pop-up we did there was during a big storm day (we nearly cancelled), but we still saw 54 people turn up for vaccination. However, booking the venue and turning up does not alone produce consistent numbers. Therefore, during the previous week, I organised for some posters and flyers to be printed and hand-delivered to shops, doctor’s surgeries, sports venues and anywhere else that will take them’.

‘Engaging directly with local businesses on the ground proved to be a great help.  Going around and speaking to everyone and sharing information, as well as answering general questions, proved extremely helpful and led to great attendance at these events. The highest turnout was 141 in Chatteris after the Spring Booster was announced. The businesses have all gotten to know me, and I have no problem asking them to share the information’.

‘The most important thing that I have learned is that although there is hesitancy around vaccines for many people, there were bigger issues facing them. The main one is limited access – if you live in a village and do not drive, getting to a mass vaccination site is difficult- local transport is not always the best. Many people also found that the opening times were not suitable or the slots at weekends were unavailable’.

‘Many people had been offered vaccinations 20 to 30 miles away, but this was too far to travel for some, especially for those who didn’t deem vaccinations or boosters’ top priority. Even now, at some of our recent pop-up sessions, we are still getting people coming for their first-time vaccination’.

‘If the public were carers (this can include parents), getting to a vaccine centre takes time and meant time away from caring for, which was not always possible. When you have several children, taking them all to a vaccination centre is not ideal either. Thus the more local approach tended to suit these people’.

‘Needle phobia was another reason people did not attend the vaccination centres.  However, at the pop-up sites, the staff were able to offer to see people in a quieter environment and gave them extra time & support’.

Debbie concluded by saying ‘Although we have had some great results this year, I cannot get complacent and will keep pressing hard and setting up pop-up sessions wherever we can.  With infections falling, health bosses are still predicting a rise in Covid and flu cases this winter, which is expected to increase the pressure on hospitals’.

The funding and project are due to finish on 18th October 2022. To find out about the vaccination programme in Fenland before then, please get in touch with Debbie on 07955440672 or email her at

Guidance for this period of mourning

Support Cambridgeshire partners are greatly saddened by the passing of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II. We wish to provide our condolences to the Royal Family during their time of personal loss. We will always be grateful for what the Queen did for our sector.

In this difficult time, we wanted to put out what NCVO have published as guidance on expectations.

Along with government guidance

Independent Age: Cost of Living Fund / Practical support measures and advice / Closing 16th September

Grants available:   25 x £40,000

Deadline to apply:  September 16th 2022

Who is the funding for? Charities, community groups and social enterprises with annual turnover >£100k

District: UK

Link: Grants Fund: Helping charities to rebuild services for people in later life | Independent Age


In response to the cost-of-living crisis Independent Age are looking to provide 25 grants of £40,000 (£1million total) to charities and community organisations to get more money into the pockets of older people and help ensure they do not have to choose between buying food to eat and heating their home this winter.  Projects must be in addition to or an extension of existing work – we cannot fund business-as-usual projects.

This fund will support projects like:

  • advice and information initiatives – such as helplines, drop-in sessions or community outreach work – that provide guidance to establish whether someone is entitled to relevant benefits
  • active support programmes that, through guidance to fill in forms and the like, help over 65s to claim benefits they are entitled to
  • budgeting advice and/or support to access better energy deals
  • debt advice, where an organisation is appropriately registered to give this
  • short-term help, such as access to grants to deal with one-off costs or emergencies or subsidised property maintenance, for older people already struggling financially.

Grants are available to registered and exempt charities, CIOs and CICs, with annual turnovers exceeding £100,000, or partnerships/collaboratives where the lead body meets these criteria. Priority will be given to smaller organisations and those embedded in the communities we are particularly targeting for this fund.

We are not able to fund individuals directly, or provide funds for capital investment, such as building projects, through this programme.
See the guidance for more information about the eligibility and prioritisation criteria for the fund.

Future plans

Organisations ineligible for this fund – specifically those working with older people to deliver other types of support, and/or community organisations with a turnover of less than £100,000 a year, are invited to email us to register their interest in future grant programmes. We will then send you a survey to find out more about your work.

In particular, we are considering offering organisations access to training, materials – including our own information and advice booklets – and additional support to help them keep up to date with good-quality advice, guidance and ways of directing older people to sources of help at this challenging time. If such a programme is of interest to you, please email us at


Phase 1 applications will be accepted from 1 September to 16 September 2022.

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