Daily coronavirus roundup for third sector, Thursday 25 June

Volunteers from charity heavy sound

How the third sector is responding to the pandemic #NeverMoreNeeded

25th June 2020 by Gareth Jones 0 Comments

Life goes on at Fife Gingerbread

A children’s charity has been continuing to provide vital support throughout the Covid-19 pandemic.

Fife Gingerbread has provided support for lone parents and their families in the Kingdom for 30 years, and has stepped up to the challenges of the crisis.

“Facebook, Zoom coffee groups, phone calls, snapchat- you name it- we’ve done it!,” said Linsey Proctor, the charity’s corporate and public relations coordinator.  

“The last few weeks we have been able to deliver play and care packages and most importantly, have a face to face chat with families. Our staff have learned Tik-Tok dances, read stories and sent out cooking videos. Bikes and school equipment have been sourced and families have been directed to the financial support they need. It’s a new way or working, but some things remain the same - the love between our charity and the people we help.”

For more information on the charity’s work, visit the Fife Gingerbread website.


More than £1.5m for children’s charities

Over £1.5 million has been granted to children’s charities across Scotland through the STV Children’s Appeal since the coronavirus crisis began, it was announced today.

Around £100,000 of this total was donated by the public in just the last two months via the appeal’s Emergency Coronavirus Campaign – with the remainder coming from the 2019 STV Children’s Appeal and the Scottish Government’s Wellbeing Fund.

In partnership with the National Emergencies Trust (NET), the appeal launched its Emergency Coronavirus Campaign in April to support the thousands of vulnerable children and young people who have been severely impacted by the Covid-19 outbreak and subsequent national lockdown in Scotland.

The first phase of the campaign – which saw televised appeals by familiar faces Lorraine Kelly and Sean Batty appearing regularly on STV – draws to a close this weekend. Phase two is set to focus more closely on how charities are using the donations from generous Scots to improve the lives of the children they work with, as the appeal seeks to raise additional funds to help those in need. A new series of TV adverts start airing on Sunday (28 June) on STV.

East Lothian’s Heavy Sound is one of the charities that has benefited from the money raised by the Emergency Coronavirus Campaign. The charity works with young people who have experienced trauma or barriers, usually helping them to reengage through musical projects such as songwriting or DJing.

Since the Covid-19 outbreak, however, Heavy Sound (volunteers pictueed above) has closed its normal projects and is instead providing food and other essential resources to vulnerable youngsters in Edinburgh and East Lothian. The charity received a £2,000 donation from the STV Children’s Appeal to help its efforts.

Jordan Butler, Heavy Sound’s founder, said: “The support we’ve received from the STV Children’s Appeal has helped us deliver more than 1,000 meals each day to young people and families who’ve found themselves in urgent need of help since this crisis began.

“Specifically, the donation from the appeal contributed to the cost of a new vehicle, which was critically important and allowed our staff and volunteers to collect and deliver the food to those who need it across the local area.”


Webinars for parents

As the coronavirus pandemic continues to fuel a perfect storm in digital risk to children in Scotland, the NSPCC and O2 are now delivering virtual online safety talks for parents.

The important online safety workshops have moved online - the latest resource from the organisations’ ongoing partnership. They are free to join and are presented by experienced NSPCC staff, who provide advice, tips, and signposting to free resources and extra support.

Social media and gaming sites have proven to be a lifeline for parents, carers and their children as they have adapted to being at home during lockdown but more time online has brought with it heightened risk for young people and increased opportunity for offenders.

Recent NSPCC research revealed children who are lonely, like attention and rely on social media are more than twice as likely to be groomed online. And recently the National Crime Agency warned of a spike in child sex offending during the coronavirus crisis, with new information leading it to conclude that there a minimum of 300,000 individuals in the UK who pose a sexual threat to children.

NSPCC local campaigns manager for Scotland, Carla Malseed, said: “There are so many great opportunities on the internet for children to play, create, learn and connect but there are also many risks.

“The coronavirus pandemic has, unfortunately, generated the conditions for a perfect storm in online abuse, and we want to help mitigate that danger.

“Our free webinars are designed to give parents and carers an opportunity to collate advice, tips and support. We also signpost to other free and useful resources.”

If you would like to organise a webinar for yourself or on behalf of a group (community group, staff team or school), contact parentworkshops@nspcc.org.uk