Wrexham mental health and wellbeing charity Advance Brighter Futures (ABF) wants to use Small Charities Week to raise awareness of the important role small charities have in their communities.
Small Charity Week takes place from June 14-19 and looks to improve the knowledge, representation and sustainability of small charities across the UK, which is a message ABF fully supports.
Lorrisa Roberts, ABF Chief Officer, said: “Small charities are so important as we can look at the big issues affecting our own communities. One of the main themes of Small Charities Week is ‘small but vital’ and it’s so true. If small charities didn’t exist, some of these local problems would get overlooked, and people wouldn’t get the support they need.”
The Value of Small
Advance Brighter Futures was one of the small charities that took part in research funded by Lloyds Bank Foundation which looked at the contribution, value and experiences of small and medium-sized charities in England and Wales.
This research was used to put together ‘The Value of Small’ report, and more recently ‘The Value of Small in a Big Crisis’ report which examined how small charities responded during the first six months of the Covid-19 pandemic.
The full report can be viewed here, but some of the main points to be were noted were:
- Smaller charities showed tremendous energy, flexibility and professionalism to understand the implications of the crisis and to continuously adapt to ever changing needs and circumstances
- Smaller charities found multiple ways to maintain human contact by checking up on people, keeping in touch with them, and connecting them to one another wherever possible
- The work of smaller charities during the pandemic has created value for individuals and communities through personal outcomes linked to health, mental health, and social isolation
- The work of smaller charities during the pandemic has created value for the economy in the face of a severe recession by continuing to employ local people, utilising local supply chains, and accessing funding to support the crisis response
- The crisis has also presented smaller charities with three sets of major challenges; the changing nature of service user and community needs, organisational challenges associated with financial and human resources, and challenges associated with sustaining relationships with clients, volunteers, and key partnerships
Overall, the research demonstrates how, during a period of crisis and change, many small charities showed incredible resilience in how they responded to the challenges.
Lorrisa added: “Small charities, such as ourselves, have been tested more than ever due to the pandemic and we’ve had to be creative to continue give people the support they need in many different ways. It’s a time where small charities have really shown their worth and value to their communities, and I hope things like The Value of Small and Small Charities Week will raise awareness of the incredible work small charities have been – and are – still doing.”
If you live in the Wrexham area and struggling with your mental health, you can learn more about ABF and the services on offer here:
Telephone: 01978 364777