News

Here you can keep up with the latest from Reading’s 900+ voluntary organisations and other voluntary sector news from around the area.

  • Coronavirus – services and support from Autism Berkshire
    9 April 2020

    Autism Berkshire is launching online autism advice workshops and support groups from 20 April, to help parents and carers and their families in a different way during the coronavirus shutdown. The workshops will be bite-sized versions of normal sessions about Meeting Sensory Needs and Managing Anger, provided using video conferencing links. Anyone who would like to register ...

  • Free fast-track volunteer befriender training launched
    9 April 2020

    In response to the changing needs of befriending organisations at this time, Befriending Networks has developed a new Interim Volunteer Training programme to help organisations train their volunteers to provide telephone/distance befriending and/or to provide a fast track training method for new volunteers coming forward during the pandemic. Befriending Networks has developed this training to help ...

  • GPs across Berkshire West will open on Good Friday and Easter Monday
    9 April 2020

    GPs across Berkshire West will be open this Good Friday and Easter Monday as the NHS steps up its work around the coronavirus outbreak. The majority of the 47 practices in the area will be operating as usual giving patients telephone access to medical care and advice. They will also be coordinating care with neighbouring surgeries ...

  • Claiming Gift Aid on cancelled events
    8 April 2020

    The government has confirmed that charities can claim gift aid on the value of tickets from cancelled events as a result of the impact of coronavirus, if the purchasers of the tickets have: agreed they do not wish to be refunded for the cost of the ticket and for it to be effectively be treated as ...

  • Government announces increase in Working Tax Credits and Child Benefit
    8 April 2020

    The government has announced it will increase the basic element of Working Tax Credit from £1,045 to £3,040 from 6 April 2020 until 5 April 2021. It is also uprating Child Benefit, other tax credits rates and thresholds, and Guardian’s Allowance by 1.7% with effect from 6 April 2020. You can read the full list of Rates and ...

  • Government announces extra support for schools and parents
    8 April 2020

    The Government has announced the following today: It will make extra funding available for schools, who are continuing to care for vulnerable children and those of critical workers. It will also extend the free school meals to children over the Easter break. It has published online educational resources for parents and schools to continue to educate pupils at ...

  • What if home is not a safe place? Free online domestic abuse seminar with the Ann Craft Trust
    8 April 2020

    The Ann Craft Trust is a national charity that provides guidance and training for organisations working with adults at risk and disabled children. They are launching a series of free online seminars on key topics that have been raised by organisations as a result of the pandemic. The first session will cover the topic: What if ...

  • Clothworkers’ Emergency Capital Programme
    7 April 2020

    The Clothworkers’ Emergency Capital Programme (CECP) will award small capital grants of up to £5,000 for essential capital items to adapt or increase services in response to the novel coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic. Priority will be given to organisations supporting vulnerable and ‘at risk’ groups within the following key programme areas: Alcohol and substance misuse Disadvantaged minority communities Disadvantaged ...

  • Now is the time to get online
    7 April 2020

    With everyone now advised to stay at home, it can be particularly difficult for those that are not online. The internet can be a vital lifeline for people that are unable to get out, and with more services going online it is becoming increasingly important for everyone to have internet access and the skills to ...

  • Compass Recovery College – online courses and activities
    7 April 2020

    Compass Recovery College are currently setting up online courses which will run throughout April, May and June. The courses will look at some of the core areas of conditions that may affect many people during restrictions in this difficult time. The four courses will be run by Olga Zilberberg their consultant NLP Practitioner and will cover: coping ...

  • The Yapp Charitable Trust – core funding for small charities
    7 April 2020

    The Yapp Charitable Trust has invited small UK charities affected by the impact of Covid-19 to apply for grants of up to £3,000. Who can apply? Registered charities who have been established for a minimum of 3 years, with a total annual expenditure of less than £40,000, who are undertaking work that focuses on one of these ...

  • Leathersellers’ Company small grants: charities supporting homeless, food supplies and victims of domestic violence
    7 April 2020

    This is a fast track application process for small one-off grants. It could be particularly useful for funding small projects or to cover unexpected costs. The value of the grant awarded could be up to a maximum of £3,000. Who can apply and what are the priorities? In the light of the unprecedented challenges that now face ...

  • Updated guidance on the Job Retention Scheme
    6 April 2020

    The government guidance on the Coronavirus Job Retenion Scheme (JRS) was last updated on 4 April 2020, and this guidance contains some recent clarifications. Please continue to check all updates as the scheme is not expected to go live until the end of April. Recently the government clarified the position regarding public funding, which means that ...

  • Employment Law changes from 6 April 2020
    6 April 2020

    Further to last year’s Taylor Review and the Good Work Plan, new employment legislation comes into force today, Monday 6 April 2020. The changes include: Parental bereavement leave and pay; Written statement of employment particulars to be issued from day one of employment and must now also include: the days the employee or worker must work and if ...

  • Update to safeguarding resources to train your volunteers
    6 April 2020

    We have updated our safeguarding resources and added ‘Reading Borough Council’s Safeguarding Information Sheet’, which is a very useful two page document summarising the core knowledge from Level 1 Safeguarding Adults and Universal Safeguarding Children. Here is the link: RVA Safeguarding Resources during the Coronavirus Pandemic This can be used by organisations to train new volunteers who ...

  • Wellbeing newsletter from RBC
    6 April 2020

    Reading Borough Council’s Wellbeing Newsletter has lots of useful information during the coronavirus outbreak. The latest issue features: Shopping tips during isolation, garden fun and keeping active. Daily coronavirus updates in British Sign Language from Signhealth. Joining the Thames Water priority list. Reading Museums and Libraries online. Accessing Health Visitor and GP services. Being alert to coronavirus scams. How to access the One ...

  • Mental health and wellbeing during the coronavirus outbreak – round-up of support and information
    3 April 2020

    A round-up of information on mental health and wellbeing during the coronavirus outbreak Government guidance This week the government issued new guidance for the public on the mental health and wellbeing aspects of coronavirus. It includes how you can connect with others during this time, helping those around you, looking after your physical wellbeing and managing your ...

  • Primary Care Hub to open at Walk-in Centre in Broad Street Mall
    3 April 2020

    Berkshire West CCG are opening two Primary Care Hubs for local people with coronavirus symptoms who require clinical assessment in the community. One will be at the Walk-in Centre in Reading’s Broad Street Mall and the second is being opened in a specially adapted space at Newbury Racecourse. They are due to open their doors ...

  • Message from Thames Valley Police
    3 April 2020

    Message from Nicholas John, Commander of Reading Police Area I understand that this is a difficult and worrying time for a lot people as we all make significant adjustments to our daily lives to follow the measures set out by the government. These measures have been put in place to stop the spread of the virus, ...

  • The Support Network – collective of businesses coaches offering free support
    3 April 2020

    A new collective of business coaches have been in touch to offer their support free of charge for the duration of the Covid-19 outbreak. You can read more below and visit their website to get in touch with them. From The Support Network Amidst all the alarming stories about panic buying and selfish behaviour during the current ...

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