Voluntary, Community & Faith Sector Newsletter

Message from Lai Lim – Trustee

This week’s editorial message is from Lai Lim, one of our trustees at Voluntary Action Doncaster

I am a Director of Doncaster Central Learning Centre CIC (DCLC) and currently lead on the development of DCLC with its remodelling of services and the use of space. I am passionate about working in partnership with volunteers from the community and with the statutory and voluntary sector. I believe that it is by working together that we can create a positive social impact. 

I enjoy it most when working and training with volunteers, particularly with those from the black,and minority ethnic background. To offer volunteers the support to improve their learning, and to provide volunteers with the necessary skills, capacity, and the knowledge to overcome specific barriers to success.

It is a pleasure to introduce VAD’s newsletter and where each time I would be excited in reading about support for volunteers and groups and the varied opportunities in volunteering.

I joined VAD’s journey in Oct 2020 and the one highlight recently is the face to face meeting with trustees and VAD’s team for the first time.  The option of meeting in person is never the same and I am appreciative of the opportunity and not to take it for granted on how we can connect in this way and to work on building better services and support for each other.

Whilst it is not mentioned explicitly, VAD is set up as an independent organisation and it is for this reason I was happy to go on this journey in supporting an independent voice for the VCFS in Doncaster.

Our CEO Cath, has been with us for over a year now and despite the pressures of the lockdown and complications in communication face to face, she has managed to do an amazing job. I admire her spirit in assisting us to drive VAD’s new vision, the work in collaboration and the cooperative model that VAD aspires to be. To build good relationships with partners such as Team Doncaster and to attract new membership.

It is up to all of us as a sector whether you are a big or a small organisation, to contribute and hopefully get something great back that reflects all the hard work of the community. I do wish and welcome more groups and organisations to join in VAD’s journey, by becoming a member and to make use of the support and opportunities available.

Covid 19 Update

With regulations lifting from 19 July, our local Director of Public Health, Dr Rupert Suckling has written to colleagues in the VCFS.  You can read this latest letter here.

Doncaster Summer Staycation 2021 

Hosted by the Doncaster Council, The Doncaster Summer Staycation 2021 offer is here and is packed full of fun activities, for children and young people across the borough, all summer long!

This year, the offer includes universal activities for all children and young people, from primary to post-16, as well as activities supported by the Holiday Activities and Food (HAF) programme, for children who are eligible for benefits-related free school meals.

Many activities are available to book onto now, but keep checking the page as new activities will be added throughout the summer. Please note, there will be NO cut-off point and parents can book onto activities, classes and clubs all summer long; but spaces are limited and will be on a first come first serve basis.

Find out all the information on the Summer Staycation page on the DMBC website. 

Volunteering Opportunities

Panel Members – Yorkshire Adoption Agency

The Adoption Panel currently meets once a month to consider applications from individuals and couples who are seeking to adopt.

  • Expressions of interest are welcome from;
  • Individuals with personal and/or professional knowledge of adoption
  • Individuals with a background in education, childcare or children’s
  • health services
  • Experienced adoptive parents

This is a voluntary position but any expenses, such as travel, will be reimbursed by the Agency. All our meetings are currently being held via Zoom which will continue until the end of 2021.

To find out more please call Gina Parker, Adoption Manager on 07774 165368 or email info@yorkshireadoptionagency.org.uk

Migration Yorkshire – Sub Regional Migration Groups (SRMGs) VCS Representative Role 

Migration Yorkshire works to ensure the voices of migrants and those supporting them are heard at a strategic level.  A nomination process is currently underway in each local authority in Yorkshire & Humberside so the VCS in each area can select their own representative to attend Sub Regional Strategic Migration Group meetings for September 2021-August 2022.  You can see the role description and terms of reference here. 

Migration Yorkshire ask that the process is clear and fair, and that the representative is nominated from and by the VCS and not statutory services.  If anyone is interested in taking up this role please email  Victoria.ledwidge@migrationyorkshire.org.uk by 5pm Friday 30th July.  

Cura-Care New Email Address

Cura-Care will now be using a new email address.  If you need to contact them please email them at:  hello@me-project.co.uk

Funded Training for Sleep Champions in Doncaster Secondary Schools – Sleep Tight

Research shows that sleep patterns alter during puberty meaning youngsters often don’t fall asleep until much later at night. This can result in difficulties waking in the morning and sleep deprivation impacting on their education.

This course outlines the reasons for the sleep issues, practical strategies to support youngsters to improve their sleep and useful resources to start conversations with young people, information that can be shared with them and parents/carers and a downloadable assembly presentation.

Schools interested in improving attendance, attainment and supporting improved mental health will benefit from having a Sleep Champion amongst their team.

Learning takes place on our e-learning platform and can be done at your own convenience between 1st October and 31st October.

For more information and to apply, go to the online form. Application deadline is 3rd September 2021.

Psychological impact of COVID- 19- pandemic and experience: An international survey

Researchers from a collaboration group would like to invite you to take part in a short questionnaire exploring the psychological impact of the coronavirus and changing restrictions, their effect on our emotions, behaviour and wellbeing. This is the third phase of recruitment. If you took part in previous phases of the study, you are still able to take part in this third phase. If you did not take part in previous phases you are still able to take part in this third phase.

The aim of this survey is to better understand how the coronavirus pandemic and changing restrictions are affecting our day-to-day lifestyle. We hope to find out what is helpful for people during this time and also what may be causing some people to be affected more than others in terms of their wellbeing.

Anyone over the age of 16 with access to this online questionnaire can take part. It is up to you to decide whether to take part or not. You are free to withdraw from the study at any time, without giving a reason and without consequence. This survey is completely voluntary and you can stop completing it at any time. You also do not have to answer any questions you don’t want to, you can just skip them.

Want to find out more? Click here.

If you do complete the survey, please ensure that you select NHS Trust/Hospital and then the Rotherham Doncaster and South Humber (RDaSH) NHS Foundation Trust from the drop down list when answering where you heard about the study’’

Funded Training for Parenting Programme – Sleep Tight

Thanks to funding from Doncaster CCG, we have 25 funded places for professionals, in Doncaster, to become trainers.

This comprehensive training package provides you with a toolkit to use directly with families to deliver a 5-week evidence-based course.

The training is ideal for family support workers, health visitors, school nurses, community nursery nurses, voluntary sector workers and any other practitioner who provides intervention to families in the Doncaster community through workshop style learning.

Learning takes place on our e-learning platform and will begin on 1st October and must be completed by 31st October.

You will then be required to attend an online live event via Zoom to access the train the trainer element of the course during November, dates will be confirmed.

To apply, fill out this form. The closing date is 3rd September 2021.

Community BSL initiative for charities and volunteers in Yorkshire

A NEW initiative to encourage more members of the public to take up sign language as an extra language and skill, is now available locally. The Signs4Life scheme is to help people to communicate and engage with children and adults who may be hard of hearing. 

Radiyya Jahan, Signs4Life partnerships officer, explains “There are more than nine million hard of hearing people registered in the UK. We have already worked with social workers, housing staff, teachers, the local NHS, and Royal Mail. We wanted to open our programs to the general public, who might also have an interest in learning sign language. We are offering a community 6-week BSL program, which you can enjoy and access from the comfort of your homes, delivered through Zoom”. Signs4Life is leading efforts towards a society in which people with disabilities have full access and are working to raise the public and political awareness of disability provision. 

For more details on the Summer community programs, please sign up here.

Is your data secure?

Data security is really important to all organisations – mistakes can be costly! The Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) has recently fined the charity Mermaids £25,000 over ‘negligent’ approach to data protection after approximately 780 pages of confidential emails were viewable online for nearly three years.

Mermaids, which supports transgender, non-binary and gender-diverse children and their families, beame aware of the data breach in 2019 and reported itself to the ICO. Mermaid’s chair has said the charity takes “full responsibility” and apologised for “this isolated lapse in data security”. Click here for the full article.

Regional Recovery – Phoenix

As part of an initiative called Regional Recovery, Phoenix is working with many councils to look at how they can support these organisations, the voluntary sector and education institutions to provide the skills that people need to operate in a more digital world. This could be digital skills for employees to build and use new ways of working or supporting residents and citizens to learn the vital skills needed to use these new services – helping them skill up to get back into employment.

For more information about regional recovery and to book your place at the workshop, vist the Phoenix website.

Dance On Returns to Doncaster Communities 

darts’ successful Dance On programme for over 55s is making a comeback. The sessions have been running over Zoom and on Sine FM radio throughout the pandemic and has recently returned to The Point, darts’ building in central Doncaster. Now, people living in Edlington, Bessacarr and Auckley can get back to dancing and socialising in a safe way.  

Dance On is a fun, friendly way to get moving, keep fit and feel healthy. Whatever the level of mobility, people can get involved in a way that is comfortable for them – sitting, standing, or boogying around the room. The sessions are really varied with dancing from a variety of styles, eras and cultures, adapted to suit everyone. 

Dance On sessions will be designed safely and in line with current Government restrictions. Professional dance leaders will ensure that people feel comfortable in each session. There will be fewer places and a shorter time slot of 45 minutes so that more sessions can take place.   

Sessions starting soon are: 

Dance On at ECO in Edlington restarts on Monday 19th July 

Sessions are at 10am and 11.15am 

Dance On at St Francis’ Church in Bessacarr restarts on Friday 23rd July 

Sessions are at 10am and 11.15am 

Dance On at Auckley Parish Centre restarts on Monday 26th July 

Sessions are at 3pm 

Sessions are by advanced booking only – those who have not booked won’t be admitted. Sessions are available to book in blocks of 6 via Eventbrite at a cost of £15 (£3 per session, 6th session free). 

Levelling up: What does it mean for charities and funders? Event

Following the publication of NPC’s recent report “Should we ‘level up’ social needs?”, NPC’s Head of Policy and External Affairs, Leah Davis will discuss the impact of The Government’s Levelling Up Fund on charities and funders in the UK, as well as NPC’s recommendations for a thriving social sector. Leah will be joined by Kim Shutler, CEO of The Cellar Trust and given the topic, we anticipate a lively group discussion where your input and queries will be welcomed.”

There will be plenty of time for discussion and questions with the speakers and with one-another, where you will be able to discuss and share your own experiences and ideas. 

When: Thursday 22nd July 2021 from 2:00pm to 3:00pm

Where: Zoom, please see the registration link here.

Employability Courses – Total Training

Total Training has 3 upcoming employability courses due to start over the next 2 weeks. If you or someone you know  are looking for a career in Care, Warehousing or Customer Service refer them across to us, to discuss how we can support them into work.

These courses are run virtually via teams so access to alp top, desk top, tablet or smartphone are essential. 

The following courses are available:

Warehousing  19th July 2021

Customer Service 19th July 2021

Health & Social Care  26th July 2021

Contact jenna@total-tp.com or lucy@total-tp.com for more information and to find out the eligibility criteria.

Adults, Health and Wellbeing Sessions – Doncaster Council

We want every person in Doncaster to live in the place they call home with the people and things that they love, in communities where they look out for one another, doing things that matter to them.

To help us achieve this vision, we’re reviewing how we work in Adults, Health and Wellbeing at Doncaster Council. We want to make things better for Doncaster people seeking or drawing on support – and better for our staff too.

One of the areas we’re looking at first is how we can improve people’s experience of contacting us for help. Now we’d like to work with you to design our future ‘front door(s)’, so we create something that works better for everyone.

We’re inviting you to attend two design sessions:

  • Session 1: Monday 19 July, 2-4pm
  • Session 2: Monday 9 August, 2-4pm

We’ll use the sessions to listen to each other’s ideas and make a plan.

Ewan King from the Social Care Institute for Excellence (SCIE) will be supporting us in facilitating the sessions and we’ll meet virtually using Microsoft Teams. There are places for 30 people in each session.

For more information and to book your place, register here. Places are limited for each of the sessions.

Carers Workshop

Do you provide support to someone who might otherwise not manage their everyday lives? You probably don’t see yourself as a carer!

Doncaster Council are keen to learn more about your experiences as a carer and would like you to join us for a workshop to get a better understanding of:

  • What is working well?
  • What is not working well?
  • What support would help you?

Please come along to a short session held by the council with some fellow carers, where your experiences and knowledge will help shape future support.

The session will be held via teams on:

Thursday 22nd July at 10am, and

Friday 23rd July at 1pm

To register your interest or if you would like a chat about this you can call Teresa on 01302 862058 or email:  Teresa.bainbridge@doncaster.gov.uk

Community Coffee Morning & Uniform Sale

On Thursday, 26th August, Preloved Uniform Doncaster are hosting a Community Coffee and Uniform Sale, which will offer free school uniforms for kids ages 4-18. The event is taking place at St. Paul’s Church Wheatley Park and will run from 10:00am-12:00pm.

If you have any questions or are looking for further information, you can contact Preloved Doncaster on 07847473536 or email:



The Covid Resilience Fund

The Covid Resilience Fund is provided through a partnership between the Julia and Hans Rausing Trust and UK Youth.

The funding aims to ensure that grassroots youth organisations that have suffered due to the pandemic have the resources required to reopen or bring their level of delivery back to pre-Covid levels and ensure they have the financial means to weather future disruptions.

Grants of up to £50,000 will help facilitate the reopening and continuation of youth provision to pre-pandemic levels.

Applications will be accepted until 18th July, 2021 (midnight).

You can find out more information and apply here.

Steps to Sustainability (UK Wide) – Round 2

Funding and a programme of specialist support are available for small to medium-sized heritage organisations to help turn a new business idea into reality.

Eligible organisations include:

  • Charities.
  • Social enterprises.
  • Local authorities.
  • Community Interest Companies (CICs).
  • Scottish Charitable Incorporated Organisations (SCIOs).
  • Limited companies.

Programme participants receive:

  • A 15-month package of support to develop their income generating idea.
  • Access to funding of up to £10,000.

The deadline for applications is 23rd July, 2021.

More information and how to apply can be found here.

Barclays’ COVID-19 Community Aid Package

As the impact of the pandemic continues to be felt, Barclays will be making a further 50 donations of £100,000 each to UK charities (with an income of at least £1million) working to support vulnerable people and communities impacted by COVID-19, and to alleviate the associated social and economic hardship caused by the crisis:

  • help for people experiencing physical and mental health issues;
  • financial assistance for people facing financial hardship;
  • support for ethnically diverse communities disproportionately impacted by the crisis; and
  • enhancing digital accessibility.

Deadline is 6pm on Friday 6th August, 2021. Full details here.

Made by Sport #ClubsInCrisis grants programme

The Made by Sport #ClubsinCrisis grants programme aims to award grants to organisations focused on grassroots sport with a particular focus on clubs in crisis.

Funding of £82,386 has been made available from Made By Sport to South Yorkshire’s Community Foundation (SYCF) which will be divided into approximately 40 grants of £2,021 across South Yorkshire. Your application can help young people at a neighbourhood, district(s) or South Yorkshire level.

This programme will fund sport for development projects which work towards one or more of those outcomes:

  • Developing Life Skills
  • Improving Mental Health
  • Reducing Crime and Antisocial Behaviour
  • Employability SkillsBuilding Stronger Communities

Applications will be accepted until 9am on the 9th August 2021. If successful your grant will be awarded from September 2021. 

For more information and to apply, visit the SYCF website.

2022 GSK IMPACT Awards & new GSK Grow Programme – core funding and training for health charities

Charities are facing significant challenges as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic while continuing to provide vital services to keep people healthy and connected. This year, more than ever, we are pleased to announce that applications are now open for the 2022 GSK IMPACT Awards and the newly launched GSK Grow Programme, which will support smaller charities.

The GSK IMPACT Awards provide core funding and free training for charities doing excellent work to improve people’s health and wellbeing. Organisations must be at least three years old, working in a health-related field in the UK, with income between £120,000 and £3 million. Up to 20 awards will be made, ranging from £4,000 to £50,000, plus free training and development valued at a further £9,500. Organisations will also have a film made, receive help with press and publicity, and be given a set of promotional materials.

The new GSK Grow Programme supports small charities with total annual income between £20,000 and £120,000. Up to 10 charities will receive £10,000 in unrestricted funding plus training and development valued at £3,200.

To apply and find out more go to: www.kingsfund.org.uk/gskimpactawards

Closing date: 20 September 2021 at 5pm

Investing for Growth Fund (IfG)

Investing For Growth (IfG) is a new programme aimed at increasing the trading activity of social enterprises in the Sheffield City Region. 

The fund is focused on existing organisations with growth plans, based and/or substantially operating in the Sheffield City Region (SCR), which comprises Barnsley, Bassetlaw, Doncaster, Rotherham and Sheffield.

Organisations can access some or all of the following:

• An initial business growth diagnostic tool to identify any support needs.

• 1-2-1 support to help you to develop your enterprise growth plans.

• Workshops and Masterclasses to help develop your skills and knowledge

to grow your enterprise.

• Growth grants of between £5k and £25k to cover up to 50% cost of a capital

project with a minimum of 50% match funding required from the applicant.

For more information and to find out if your organisation is eligible you can contact rachel on 07975 655218 or you can email:



The latest Vacancy Bulletin from DMBC is now available.

Macmillan Cancer Advocacy Service Manager – Citizens Advice Rotherham

Responsible to: Projects & Services Manager 

Hours: 37.5 hours per week

Term: Permanent position

Location: RAIN Building, Eastwood Lane, Rotherham

Salary: £25,000 pa plus 4% pension contributions

Annual Leave: 30 days plus 8 Bank Holidays

This is an exciting opportunity for someone to lead an already established Cancer Advocacy service, supporting patients in Rotherham, who are newly diagnosed with cancer, to access the service and receive one to one advocacy support to enable them to live with and beyond their cancer.

The successful candidate will manage the volunteer advocates, who will support in the development of the service, as well as establishing links with key stakeholders ensuring the service is well utilised and works collaboratively with existing NHS and Third Sector Services.

The closing date is 30th July 2021 at 9am.

For more information about the job and to apply, please visit the Citizens Advice website.

Sleep Talkers Project Manager – The Sleep Charity

Title: Sleep Talkers Project Manager

Salary: £32,500 per annum

Hours: 37 hours per week

Location: Doncaster office, remote working is possible for the right candidate, the role will require some national travel.

Closing Date: 31st July at 5pm

An exciting opportunity has arisen for an ambitious individual to join The Sleep Charity team to lead our new. Sleep Talkers project. ‘Sleep Talkers’ are trained volunteers who will share information and guidance to support those with sleep issues in the heart of communities across England.

You will work closely with the Senior Management Team and Training and Development Officer, taking the lead on all areas of the project. You will be responsible for formalising the charity’s volunteering programme and developing steering groups to input into the materials. The role involves writing high quality training packages to support the charity to develop our mission.

This is a diverse role that you can really make your own. You will need to have excellent communication, organisational and strategic planning skills. You will develop partnerships with other voluntary sector organisations to disseminate our work at scale.

If you are interested and are looking for more information or to apply, visit the Charity Job Website.

Healthwatch Rotherham Manager – Citizens Advice Rotherham

Job Title: Healthwatch Rotherham Manager 

Responsible to: Projects & Services Manager

Hours: 37.5 hours per week

Term: Permanent position

Location: RAIN Building, Eastwood Lane, Rotherham

Salary: £25,000 pa plus 4% pension contributions

Annual leave: 30 days plus 8 Bank Holidays

This is an exciting opportunity for someone to lead Healthwatch Rotherham and to help make a lasting difference to Rotherham’s health & social care services.

The successful candidate will manage a small, dedicated team to shape the strategic direction and ensure Rotherham residents are heard by the right people, at the right time, in the right way.

The closing date for this position is the 13th August 2021.

You can find more information here.

YMCA Facilities Manager 

YMCA Doncaster is looking for an organised and effective person to manage the day-to-day safety, maintenance, upkeep and cleaning of YMCA Doncaster’s property and premises.  This will include preparing reports, carrying out audit checks and associated administrative duties.

For full details and a link to the application form, please see the YMCA website 

Contribute to our Next Newsletter!

If you have an article, job opportunity or funding opportunity you would like to see featured in the next edition of this newsletter, please send it to us at info@voluntaryactiondoncaster.org.uk by 1pm on Wednesday 28th July.