Our News - Page 5 of 6 - CVS Uttlesford

ByRichard Corby

Don’t just sit there! A health event for men

An afternoon of entertainment including stand up comedy from John Ryan who addresses the serious business of health in an engaging and amusing way

Hosted by BBC Essex DJ Ronnie Barbour this event looks at the funny side of men’s health whilst offering the opportunity to find out more about local activities to help you get active and stay healthy

“Don’t just sit there” is being brought to you by the Essex Shed Network and West Essex Sheds hosted by Maldon and District CVS and CVS Uttlesford and is supported by the Centre Supporting Voluntary Action in Chelmsford

Calling all men! – find out more about staying well and have a laugh and a free lunch at the same time #dontjustsitthere

Don’t just sit there is an exciting event taking place just to mark Men’s Health Week 2018.

Taking place on Monday 18th June from 12:30pm the event will feature stand up comedy from John Ryan who addresses the serious business of health in an engaging and amusing way.

Includes a professional pop up panel, listen to a series of professionals explain themselves in just four minutes, take part in a real warm up event and talk to local people about what’s going on in your area.

Ticket includes lunch!

Monday 18th June 201812.30 p.m. – 3.30 p.m.

The Transition

Anne Knight Building

City Park West




Book online at https://dont_just_sit_there.eventbrite.co.uk


If you have any questions about this event please contact Hamish on 01621 851891 or email hamish@maldoncvs.org.uk

ByRichard Corby

First Green Matters garden transformation complete

Green Matters is a gardening project aimed at the vulnerable, elderly and disabled residents in Uttlesford, who have lost control of their gardens

Through the deployment of teams of locally sourced volunteers, these gardens will be fully or partially reclaimed, in order to improve local resident’s health and wellbeing and to reduce the risk of trips and falls

Our first garden transformation was at the home of an elderly lady who has mobility issues and who cannot walk unaided.  Sadly her daughter died at a young age, with her marriage ending a short while later.  Tragically, her son too died, leaving this resident quite isolated.

Our project lead Mark Ropkins, with support from our volunteers, have made this lady’s garden safe again.  We’ve fought back the overgrowth of plants, cut the lawns to a manageable length and with the support of her good and dear neighbours, this lady can now enjoy her garden once again – safely.

If you know someone who would benefit from Green Matters the contact Mark on

Phone: 01371 878400 / 07841632096

Email: mark.ropkins@cvsu.org.uk

If you would like to be a volunteer and be part of the community gardening project then contact us on

Phone: 01371 878400

Email: info@cvsu.org.uk

ByRichard Corby

Funding Bulletin May 2018

The May 2018 edition of our Funding Bulletin is now free to download

Each month our Funding and Information Officer Jacqui Davies prepares an invaluable funding bulletin, detailing currently open funds that charities and community organisations can apply to in support of their work

Download the FREE Funding Newsletter for May 2018


If you would like help with any of the funding programmes detailed or advice on any aspect of funding or group development, please contact Jacqueline Davies, Funding & Information Officer
Email: info@cvsu.org.uk

Telephone: 01371 878400


ByRichard Corby

Making Every Contact Count (MECC)

Making Every Contact Count is an approach to behaviour change that utilises the millions of day to day interactions that organisations and individuals have with other people to support them in making positive changes to their physical and mental health and wellbeing

MECC enables the opportunistic delivery of consistent and concise healthy lifestyle information and enables individuals to engage in conversations about their health at scale across organisations and populations.

The fundamental idea underpinning the MECC approach is simple. It recognises that staff across health, local authority and voluntary sectors, have thousands of contacts every day
with individuals and are ideally placed to promote health and healthy lifestyles.

  • For organisations, MECC means providing their staff with the leadership, environment, training and information that they need to deliver the MECC approach.
  • For staff, MECC means having the competence and confidence to deliver healthy lifestyle messages, to help encourage people to change their behaviour and to direct
    them to local services that can support them.
  • For individuals, MECC means seeking support and taking action to improve their own lifestyle by eating well, maintaining a healthy weight, drinking alcohol sensibly,
    exercising regularly, not smoking and looking after their wellbeing and mental health.

MECC focuses on the lifestyle issues that, when addressed, can make the greatest improvement to an individual’s health:

  • Stopping smoking
  • Drinking alcohol only within the recommended limits
  • Healthy eating
  • Being physically active
  • Keeping to a healthy weight
  • Improving mental health and wellbeing

Health Education England has developed a number of e-learning packages to support MECC.   These are available free of charge from the e-learning for Healthcare website

There are also a number of MECC resources available on the Making Every Contact Count website, together with evidence of the benefits derived from a MECC approach to healthcare, plus useful information on sourcing quality training for your staff and volunteers.



ByRichard Corby

Dragons Challenge Awards Evening 2018

The Dragons Apprentice Challenge is an innovative annual Business Challenge for students, typically between 16 and 17 years old.  Teams are given £100 seed capital, matched with a local business professional (Dragon) and paired with a local Charity Partner

On Wednesday 26th April 2018 we celebrated the end of our first intake of Dragons Apprentices with an awards evening at Saffon Screen, Saffron Walden, Essex. Our teams of apprentices joined us for an evening of reflection, faced our “Super Dragons” panel and then following a buffet celebration, we presented our Awards across six categories: – Most Money Made, Most Innovative Product, Service or Business Idea, Best Partnership with your Charity, Outstanding Apprentice Achievement, Best Presentation and finally Overall Winning Team.

Our host for the evening was Steve Shoesmith, and we were delighted to be joined by Dominic Parry, Founder and owner of The Saffron Ice Cream Company as out guest speaker, who gave our young apprentices and insight into the challenges and rewards of running your own business.

Thank you to everyone who contributed to making the evening, and the first year of Dragons Apprentice Uttlesford such a success.

ByRichard Corby

Our email addresses are changing

As part of our GDPR compliance, CVS Uttlesford is moving its email communications to a new platform.   From Friday 11th May 2018 we will all have new email addresses and would ask you to use them from this date.

Our primary email addresses are:

info@cvsu.org.uk for general enquiries, funding advice and bulletins and volunteering

accounts@cvsu.org.uk for all invoice and payment questions

ceo@cvsu.org.uk for our Chief Officer Clive Emmett

dragons.challenge@cvsu.org.uk for our Dragons Apprentice Challenge programme


You can also contact team members directly using the following email addresses:

Email sent to previous email addresses will be forwarded to the new accounts during the transition.  Please update your contact lists with the new details as soon as possible.

Thank you


ByRichard Corby

Green Matters project officially launches

A new gardening project aimed at the vulnerable, elderly, and disabled residents who have lost control of their garden has launched in Uttlesford

Green Matters is run by the Council for Voluntary Service Uttlesford (CVSU) and supported by Uttlesford District Council and Essex County Council, as well as the Uttlesford Community Safety Partnership (CSP), and Livewell Uttlesford.

Teams of locally sourced volunteers will help these gardens to be fully or partially reclaimed, in order to improve local resident’s health and wellbeing and to reduce the risk of trips and falls.

Through contact with the volunteers, the aim of Green Matters is to reduce loneliness and isolation, increase a sense of connectedness to the local community and have a positive effect on mental health and wellbeing in the community.

Project coordinator Mark Ropkins will recruit, train and manage the team of volunteers, who will also carry out risk assessments for each intervention and provide feedback which will be used to monitor the success of the project.

If you know someone who would benefit from Green Matters, please contact Mark on 01371 878400 / 07841 632096 or markropkins.cvsu@outlook.com

ByRichard Corby

Uttlesford Community Action Zones reports now published

A great opportunity for Uttlesford partners to seek understanding and better outcomes for people living within the local community

Tackling social isolation and loneliness is high on Uttlesford Health and Wellbeing Board’s agenda, as outlined within its Strategy 2017-2022. The Community Action Zone (CAZ) project was a great opportunity for Uttlesford partners to seek understanding and better outcomes for people living within the local community.

The project was commissioned by Essex Partners and delivered collaboratively by a range of stakeholders in conjunction with the Young Foundation. Focusing on three very different areas in the Uttlesford district (the neighbourhoods of Saffron Walden, Little Bardfield, Takeley and Little Canfield), The aim was to learn more about the social networks and connections that exist in these communities so that local stakeholders can work together to best support the people and projects that are contributing to community wellbeing and reducing isolation and loneliness. It involved a range of qualitative research methods including interviews, informal conversations and mapping activities with stakeholders, residents and groups. Community events arranged in each neighbourhood shared the insights and kicked off a discussion about next steps for supporting local social action. The partners included: Uttlesford District Council, Essex County Council, Essex Fire and Rescue Service, Uttlesford CVS and Volunteer Centre, Anglia Ruskin University Health Lab and West Essex CCG.

The project used a three-staged process to promote community-led social action to tackle social isolation and loneliness: listening and observing through ethnographic research, dialogue and reflection through community events, and co-creating new approaches led by residents themselves.

A report detailing the research findings and project progress to December 2017 is available via these links:

Link to the YF publication page:


Direct link to download the report:

Download Uttlesford Community Action Zone report



ByRichard Corby

Dragons Apprentice Challenge Awards Event

The Dragons Apprentice Challenge is an innovative annual Business Challenge for students, typically between 16 and 17 years old.  Teams are given £100 seed capital, matched with a local business professional (Dragon) and paired with a local Charity Partner

Participants have 4 months to come up with a business idea, make it happen and report on it.  The aim is for teams to turn their £100 into £1000+ through executing a single or series of business ideas.  All profits made by the teams are presented directly to their allocated charity.   This is the first year the challenge has taken place in Essex.

At the end of the process we want to celebrate their achievements, with their families and other invited guests.  We are delighted to be hosting our first Dragons Apprentice Challenge Awards evening on Wednesday 25th April 2018, celebrating the achievements of the students who have taken part in this first year of the challenge.  Our venue will be Saffron Walden County High School, with the ceremony starting at 6.30 p.m.

Thank you to everyone who has taken part in the Challenge this year, and making is a wonderful success!



ByJacqueline Davies

Comic Relief Essex Funding Deadline Approaching

Comic Relief Core Strength – Local Communities Programme – Essex

Application Deadline: 20 April 2018

Grants are available for the essential core running costs for small, locally led community organisations in Essex, Southend and Thurrock that are working to make their communities more connected, empowered and productive.

Maximum Value: £ 10,000 Minimum Value: £ 1,000

The Comic Relief scheme is provided by Comic Relief and administered locally by the Essex Community Foundation.
There are still many communities in the UK that suffer from economic and social deprivation and the current economic climate may make this situation worse. This programme aims to empower local people, enabling them to create lasting change in their communities.

To be eligible, applicants must:

  • Have an annual income of £100,000 or under for the last full financial year.
  • Have been running activities for at least 12 months.
  • Be working in a disadvantaged or deprived area.
  • Have limited access to other sources of income.
  • Clearly define the need they are addressing.
  • Clearly demonstrate the benefit of their activities to local people.
  • Illustrate how they aim to deliver social outcomes.
  • Provide clear evidence that the services they provide are inclusive to all.

This funding is to support core running costs or organisational development costs. Funding cannot be used for direct project delivery.

  • The funding is for work that addresses at least one of the following priorities:
  • Connected communities – seeking to improve inclusion and cohesion in communities.
  • Productive communities – investing in local residents to help them solve the issues they are facing using local people and resources.
  • Empowered communities – working to empower marginalised and disadvantaged communities

Priority will be given to:

  • Those that are new to Comic Relief and/or Community Foundation funding.
  • Those in areas of high deprivation.
  • Those in geographically underfunded areas.
  • Those with lived experience, where people directly affected by the issues are involved in all levels of the organisation.
  • Those with innovative approaches, to respond to clearly defined need.

Application Procedure:

Contact the Essex Community Foundation for further information and to request an application form.

Essex Community Foundation
121 New London Road

Telephone: 01245 356018

Email: grants@essexcf.org.uk

CVSU Funding Advice and Support

Our funding support service continues to be very popular providing a professional step by step guide through the funding service

As well as supplying funding information to all  members and those organisations requesting information about specific Funds, we conduct in depth  advice sessions. Recent applications for funding from local groups have been sought for a variety of purposes from a scout troop minibus to playground equipment, from training costs to church repairs. Three large building projects are also ongoing.

Monthly funding bulletins are emailed to those subscribing to the service.

Download the latest Funding Opportunities in Uttlesford information pack

Funding opportunities are also highlighted in our newsletter which is distributed quarterly.

  • If you would like receive the monthly funding e-mail
  • If you have a funding enquiry
  • If you would like us to publicise a grant or fund

Then please call Jacqueline Davies on 01371 878400 or you can email infocvs@btconnect.com