From peer support groups for people suffering with arthritis to cycling support for children and families, the new Health Inequalities Grant Programme has awarded grants of between £10,000 and £30,000 to fourteen Voluntary, Community and Social Enterprise (VCSE) sector organisations.
The grant programme was developed by members of the Better Together group, and the programme is being administered by VODA (Voluntary Organisations Development Agency).
All funded activities focus on delivering outcomes relating to the key themes of the recently published Equally Well strategy for North Tyneside - ‘Equal life chances for all’, ‘Thriving places and communities’ and ‘Maintaining independence’.
The grants programme aims to be more than just an offer of funding.
In order to build an evidence base of what works and to help identify scalable solutions, all successful applicants will attend six-monthly learning and development sessions delivered in partnership with Goodlabs - a local management consultancy that helps charitable organisations to enhance their social impact.
Cllr Karen Clark, cabinet member for public health and wellbeing at North Tyneside Council, said: “Tackling health inequalities is a key priority for us and we are delighted to be able to provide funding and support to the VCSE organisations across the borough who work tirelessly to make an invaluable contribution to our residents every day.
“The pandemic has emphasised the health inequalities in North Tyneside, and we know that working with, developing and funding partners to deliver and increase the capacity of wrap-around support is key to reducing this and improving health and care for residents.”
Gary Charlton, deputy director commissioning and corporate development at North Tyneside CCG, said: “We know that the VCSE sector makes an invaluable contribution to the care of patients and service users across North Tyneside.
"We’re pleased to be working alongside VODA and North Tyneside Council to help increase the capacity and capability within the sector to improve health and care and reduce health inequalities.”
Robin Fry, chief executive officer at VODA, said: “The sector has a key role to play in helping to address existing health inequalities in the borough and I’m delighted that this is recognised and resourced by North Tyneside CCG and North Tyneside Council.”