What a year for East Brighton Trust! We've awarded small grants, partnership grants and enrichment grants, we've celebrated some big anniversaries with our friends and we've celebrated ourselves, having awarded over £500,000 to groups in the area.
Watch this short video about our year.
And if you want to find out more detail about some of the groups we've supported, have a browse of our Recently Funded Projects page.
Our next deadline for small grants is 5pm on 12th January and you can find the simple online application on the Sussex Community Foundation website. Please make sure you get your applications in on time and share with any other local groups who may not have heard of us before. Our small grants of £500 are for groups in Moulsecoomb, Bates Estate, Saunders Park, Manor Farm, Whitehawk, Craven Vale, Bristol Estate and Higher Bevendean.
Many thanks for your support and enthusiasm this year! We wish you all the best for the festive season and we’re looking forward to connecting with you and getting involved in lots more work with East Brighton’s communities next year.
East Brighton Trust offers grants to community groups and charities in the East Brighton area, an area covering some of the poorest wards in our city.
We have typically allocated grants through three channels – our small grants of £500 which we award 3 times a year, our partnership grants offering funding for projects over a longer period of time, and our Colin Sayers ‘Random Acts of Kindness’ grants which give an extra helping hand to community groups in need.
But we have recently become increasingly aware of the need for different kinds of provision for some of the people living in the areas we support.
This year, parents, teachers and headteachers across Brighton & Hove launched the ‘Save Our Schools’ campaign to oppose austerity measures which are cutting £11.5 million from education in Brighton and Hove and £3 billion to schools nationwide. On the frontline, schools are painfully experiencing the effects of these cuts, with funding being drastically cut and art, music and sport provision being cut back or lost entirely.
It is in this respect that East Brighton Trust realised we could step in to provide some assistance where it is particularly needed. We therefore decided to support Moulsecoomb Primary School with a grant to fund some of the extra-curricular activity that the school could not afford to fund themselves. We have named it an “Enrichment grant” to reflect the nature of the activities the grant will fund – things like the breakfast club, after school club and day trips that will enrich pupils’ educational experience and consequently their lives. We have agreed to fund the school with £10,000 per year for the next three years to support these activities and with just the first instalment, an impressive amount has already been achieved. Over 120 children attend the afterschool club every week and 120 go to breakfast club – a phenomenal number. Each class was assigned a proportion of the grant to make sure the money was well distributed across the whole school and the individual classes could then choose how best to spend their share of the funds.
Moulsecoomb School got in touch with a list of activities that the East Brighton Trust Enrichment grant has been used to fund or part-fund. These have included:
Year 6 Residential trip to PGL activity centre
After school club
“Chocolatician” visit to Reception
Heritage activities for Year 2 as part of their Enrichment week
Seven sisters trip for Year 3
Samba band sessions (for Years 4, 5 & 6) for the Brighton Festival
Bus tickets for i360 trip & adult tickets (all year groups)
Gladrags sewing project for Year 6 girls
Stone Age workshops for Year 3 & 4
Bus tickets for Pizza Express trip
Set up funding for toddler group & Nursery “Rhyme and Shine” group
Nursery and toddler group trip to Tilgate Park
We’re proud to be able to support the school in this way and look forward to hearing more about the activities taking place at the school and the difference it is making to local children’s lives. Thank you to the school for sending over these lovely photos of how some of the money has been spent.
We’re also pleased to say that a similar grant has also been agreed with St Marks School in Whitehawk and we will share more details of this once the school begins to spend it.
East Brighton Trust director Warren Carter is also a governor at Moulsecoomb School and he wrote back in March about the effects the budget cuts were having on the school and the ways they are working with other organisations to try and plug these funding gaps.
Last year, East Brighton Trust were approached by A Band of Brothers - a charity committed to positive social change through personal development and community building.
Affectionately known as Abob, the charity was borne out of concern at the continuing escalation of self-destructive and anti-social behaviour among young men. The organisation engages mentors to act as role models for young men who are experiencing difficult life situations well as offering programmes, training and experiences to support them in turning their lives around. Since conception, the Brighton community has grown to over 100 mentors working with over 50 local young men, primarily from the Whitehawk Estate.
The local group were looking for funding for a group of young men from Whitehawk to travel up to Scotland to undertake tree planting and conservation work in the Caledonian Forest. These men had experienced substantial hardships and challenges throughout their lives and were in the process of rebuilding them with the help of the group. After having completed a 10-week mentoring programme, the process was ongoing - with weekly meetings and continuing support from older men who volunteer with ABOB. The trip to Scotland was the next part of the programme.
East Brighton Trust were pleased to be able to help ABOB fund the trip with an award of £2000 from our Random Acts of Kindness fund. The special fund was set up in memory of former East Brighton Trust Chair Colin Sayers and is intended to give an extra helping hand to community groups in need.
A review of the trip
ABOB mentor Tom Walker got in touch with the amazing photos featured here and to tell us about how the trip went:
“3 mentors and 7 young men from A Band of Brothers travelled from Brighton to the Highlands of Scotland to do work for Trees for Life, a charity dedicated to restoring the natural forests and rewilding the land. It was an epic journey by sleeper coach which finally ended at the remote bothy in the beautiful Glen Affric. The lads had quite a shock when I broke the news that there would be no phone signal, no running water and no electricity - but it was perfect for them to have complete isolation and was a real bonding experience. We were led by an inspiring man called Mick who could relate to the guys with his past and had turned his life around to live a life close to nature and helping others to connect.
It was a really good feeling to see the lads planting trees with their mentors in the mountains. We jumped in the freezing river, climbed a mountain, played in the snow and saw a golden eagle. The whole trip had a perfect balance of adventure, challenge, tree planting and emotional work through sharing and using nature to help process problems. It was great to be able to give the young men an experience like that and to know there is a lasting legacy in the trees we planted growing in the highlands.”
Feedback from the participants
Tom also sent us some feedback from some of the young men who took part:
“I really enjoyed it, it was great experience to be a part of bringing the wildlife back. Someone's got to do it! It was good to get together with the lads, and good to be able to do the emotional Abob work while doing TFL work in Scotland.
It was good to hear Mick's knowledge and hear about his way of life, where he's come from to where he is now. It was easy for us to relate to him.
I would definitely do it again.”
Ben Dalby, 23
“It was the most amazing experience! Experience of a life time, I'll never forget it. It was good for team building and good to be giving back to the earth and helping nature. I also conquered a fear of heights I've had for a long time when we climbed the mountain. I can't believe I climbed a mountain!!!”
Zak Young, 21
“I was thrown right out of my comfort zone at first and it was nice giving back to the earth by planting trees - I really enjoyed it. It was one of the best times of my life and I'd do it again in a heartbeat. Mick is a legend! He's one of the nicest down to earth people I've ever met, got a lot of respect for him. Had a nice sense of community climbing up the mountain on day our day off.
I got a nice sense of independence and freedom when I was in the mountains with trees for life.”
Back in March when we held our party at The Bevy to celebrate having awarded £500,000 to groups in East Brighton, we were very lucky to work with a team of media students from Brighton Aldridge Community Academy (BACA). They came along on the day to talk to some of the Bevy staff, volunteers and regulars as well as to the East Brighton Trust team about the impact the pub has made on the community and to the everyday lives of the individuals who visit it.
Many thanks to Keeran, Nadja, Bradley, Jake, Logen, Jade, Kieran, Killian, Gabi and Chloe for all your hard work and well done on such a brilliant collection of films.
Each of the videos is a fantastic piece of work, showing impressive filmmaking skills from the students and giving a real insight into some of what goes on in the pub. Grab yourself a cup of tea then sit down and have a watch to find out what a community pub looks like...
It’s always so nice to receive feedback from the projects we’ve supported so we were happy to hear from the 55th Moulsecoomb Scouts group recently. We awarded them £5000 of funding from the Colin Sayers Random Acts of Kindness fund at the end of 2015 to help get their group set up.
A bit of background to the project – Scouts are the biggest mixed youth organisation in the UK. They aim to change young lives by offering activities, experiences, adventure and the chance to help others to make a positive impact in communities. In 2014, Scouts UK launched a campaign by the name of “Better Prepared” with the aim of bringing the benefits of Scouting to 200 of the most deprived areas of the UK by 2018. Under this banner the Brighton and Hove Scout District decided to create a new group in January 2016 at St Georges Hall in Moulescoomb.
Scout Groups are managed solely by volunteers, so local adults and parents were asked to help fulfil a number of available volunteer roles. And the group got in touch with us just before Christmas 2015 to see if we could help fund them as they set-up. At the time, David Floud, Regional Development Officer (East Sussex) for The Scout Association said “We believe it will add to the community and provide positive character traits and life skills for the local children. We think Scouting will succeed in the area - Moulsecoomb has a history of scouting and from the array of projects in the area it is clear there is strong support from the community.”
The Scout movement has been making a difference to childrens’ lives since 1907, as explained on the Scouts UK website; “Scouts helps children and young adults reach their full potential. Scouts develop skills including teamwork, time management, leadership, initiative, planning, communication, self-motivation, cultural awareness and commitment. We help young people to get jobs, save lives and even change the world.
“As a Scout you can learn survival skills, first aid, computer programming, or even how to fly a plane. There’s something for every young person. It’s a great way to have fun, make friends, get outdoors, express your creativity and experience the wider world.”
We were very happy to support this group offering activities and skills to girls and boys in the Moulsecoomb area and we allocated £5000 from the Colin Sayers fund to help the group set up. These funds went towards rent, camping and sports equipment, uniforms, and to subsidise membership fees. This last point is particularly important as it means the attendees can be charged a nominal fee to participate, so no-one is excluded should their family be under financial pressure.
Just 18 months since the group started there are now 50-60 children from the Moulsecoomb estate attending regularly, with many more expected to join in September. The members have so far attended 3 camps, which volunteer Claire Brewer told us that all the children loved, “they learnt new skills like fire-lighting , shelter-building and putting up tents” she said, “for a lot of these kids it was their first time camping and for some even their first holiday”.
The group was initially open to Beavers (6 to 8 years) and Cubs (8 to 10½ years) and from summer 2017 accepts older Scouts too.
The clubs take place at St George’s Hall, Newick Road, Moulsecoomb during term times and are open to girls and boys.
Beavers - Mondays 6pm -7pm – (ages 5 ¾ - 7 ½ )
Cubs - Mondays 7.15pm - 8.30pm (ages 7 ½ - 10)
Scouts - Wednesdays 7pm - 8.30pm (ages 10 -14)
Claire sent us a few pictures of the scouts at some of their activities and the camps. We’re so glad that East Brighton Trust were able to help so many young people from Moulsecoomb – who now join over 26 million members of the prestigious Scout movement worldwide.
You may not be aware yet, but East Brighton Trust teamed up with The Resource Centre last year to offer support to groups in the East Brighton area.
The Resource Centre is a charity serving voluntary and community groups across Brighton and Hove. The Centre has been in existence since 1975 and is used by around 1000 different local groups every year, from playgroups to environmental campaigns, residents associations to arts organisations.
In addition to having supported them through our small grants scheme in the past, we recognised a need for support specifically for the groups we fund in East Brighton and were happy to set up a provision with the Resource Centre to offer this. The provision can help groups with a number of activities such as filling in grants applications, writing constitutions, examining their accounts and complying with monitoring requirements to us, our partners at Sussex Community Foundation and other grant-giving organisations they may be receiving funds from.
Between January and June 2017, the Resource Centre supported fourteen different community groups in East Brighton with this funding that we provided. These are all grassroots community groups which are run by and for the local community. Resource Centre support aims to help groups find solutions to issues they are grappling with, and are therefore tailor-made to each group. This supports consisted of a mixture of planned sessions as well as “quick support” – enabling groups to get instant support by phoning in to the centre.
The groups receiving assistance have expressed how grateful they have been for the support. Moulsecoomb Local Action Team fed back to the Resource Centre that “it’s nice to know that you are there for local groups. Staff are always very friendly and helpful. Very valuable service.” And the local Drama drop-in gave specific feedback on the help they had received: “We were given very thorough guidance on the difference between CIC, Charitable Trusts and community groups and how this would affect our progression for our drama club group. We were enabled to see the pros and cons of each option in relation to taking our work forward. The support was thorough and done in a way that enabled us to understand the implications of following each option. We were also given hand-outs to look at and referred to websites for further information.”
The Resource Centre provides vital services to communities in our city and last year was selected as one of the Brighton & Hove Mayor’s chosen charities as well as recently celebrating its 40th birthday as you can see in the photo above! You can head to our website find out more details about the East Brighton Trust funded support for the Resource Centre and do get in touch with them to find out how they might be able to help your group.
In early 2017 we were happy to award one of our small grants to New Roots – a community gardening group in Moulsecoomb.
New Roots, based on the Moulsecoomb allotments, produces healthy organic fruit, veg and herbs for people who would otherwise be unable to afford them.
The East Brighton Trust funding went towards the running costs of the community project – for new tools, seeds and rent of the plots. New Roots member Amy told us “The group has been running since 1993 and the grant has helped it keep going when other sources of funding are no longer available”.
She went on to tell us more about the group and its members – “The New Roots work not only brings physical and mental health benefits to our members, as well as helping them learn new skills, but it also benefits their families and friends and the wider community as it is open for people to drop in and people also benefit from the organic produce. About 50 people get involved with the allotment every year.
We are a multi-generational project and have people with a range of experience. We all work together and learn from each other.
As mostly low wage earners and part-employed/unemployed/families we grow our vegetables and fruit to fulfil dietary needs. It is also an educational project which promotes organic growing techniques to the local community.
We work cooperatively - we make any big decisions together and have collectively responsibility for the garden. This helps develop people's confidence with growing.”
Another New Roots member, Julia, wanted to let us know how the group has helped her through a difficult time - “New Roots means a lot to me. I am almost through my medical treatment for breast cancer - surgery, drugs etc, and New Roots constitutes a vital dimension of my other cancer treatment - my self-treatment. Growing my own food with others, all of us learning from the more experienced and long standing members on the one hand and the land itself on the other, is one of the most exciting experiences of my life so far. Ah, so it's beautiful up here on the hill above Moulescoomb and the people and plants are so inspiring.”
And on a personal level for her, Amy told us "Being involved with New Roots has been very welcome at stressful times of my life. It has been somewhere to go and do something productive, somewhere quiet and peaceful to escape and somewhere to learn new skills."
We visited the group in June for a nose around and to hear about how the plot has evolved over the years - we hope you enjoy these photos we took up on their allotment. If you’re keen to get involved with this fantastic community gardening group, New Roots are always keen to hear from people who may want to get involved with the project. Please email [email protected] to find out more.
Brighton’s community pub got local people into the party spirit this weekend as they celebrated 80 years of the pub with a HUGE birthday bash. Staff and volunteers at The Bevy, in Moulsecoomb, worked tirelessly to bring games, activities, dressing up, entertainment, food, drinks and information to around 400 people throughout the day. The event was themed around the Past, Present and Future of the pub.
The Bevy, and the team behind it, has much to be proud of. Re-opened in December 2014 after having been closed for a number of years, The Bevy is truly, as their tagline puts it ‘more than just a pub’. A much-needed community venue, providing an important meeting place for local people, The Bevy is the UK’s first community pub on a housing estate and offers something for everyone, from community cookery lessons and a pub choir to the very popular ‘Bevy Bus’ which transports Albion fans to home league games.
The Bevy holds a special place in our hearts - as well as owning the property The Bevy is housed in, East Brighton Trust has played a central part in financing the pub since it re-opened. We have also supported many groups and initiatives taking place at The Bevy through our small grants scheme. These include the Bevy Darts team, an apple planting day at the pub and Friday Friends – the weekly lunch club for older residents of Moulsecoomb and Bevendean. And of course, it’s where we held our party back in March at which we celebrated giving half a million pounds in grants to groups in East Brighton.
So it’s no surprise that many of the East Brighton Trust directors were there to celebrate, with great amusement caused when EBT chair Warren Carter was put into the stocks to be pelted with wet sponges – helping raise £150 for charity. You can see more pictures of the event on The Bevy facebook page.
Well done to the Bevy team and let’s raise a pint to the next 80 years.
Dottie's café is the new community café in East Brighton Park staffed almost entirely by Deaf people. Since opening in September 2016, Dottie's has been serving delicious refreshments for visitors to the park as well as providing a community space for local people to come together.
Traditional fare such as fried breakfasts and roast dinners is on offer plus tea, coffee, cakes and ice creams. Vegan & gluten-free options are available and the cosy café is filled with polka dot décor and crockery. Customers can order in British Sign Language and a range of drop-in sessions will be held for the Deaf.
Finding jobs and accessing services can be difficult for Deaf people and Dottie’s is aiming to help by providing a Job Club, English and Maths tutoring to functional skills level, driving theory practice, plus a range of British Sign Language courses. They also host English and Maths tutoring for refugees, drop in café evenings for the homeless, and group maths, English and science tutoring sessions for children who are home educated/outside of the education system.
Community groups are encouraged to use the space for meet ups and get-togethers and well-behaved dogs are welcome inside. Dotties sees itself as a community hub for all people - not just Deaf people.
East Brighton Trust supported Dottie’s in January 2017 with funding to contribute towards renovation work to one of the spaces in the café building to create a private workshop/study/meeting space for the sessions they run.
With a packed schedule of events coming up, you can follow Dotties on facebook for updates and see the below video from Latest TV which was made just before the café officially opened. We’re looking forward to attending their community barbecue this summer, but in the meantime we popped by for one of their tasty fry-ups one Sunday morning.
East Brighton Trust is a Community Interest Company registered in England and Wales No. 4260488
Our Registered Office is Unit 5, Westergate Business Centre, Westergate Road, Brighton, BN2 4QN