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COVID 19 Update CEPL12
Despite some dramatic twists and turns, this year seems to have flown by, and Christmas is almost upon us. It’s nothing like the Christmas we all hoped for, but at least there is light at the end of the tunnel with a vaccine being rolled out. This time next year, it will all be behind us…
This newsletter is looking at a few of the highlights of 2020 for Community Enterprises PL12.
Hopper Buses on the road again!
December saw the restarting of the Community Enterprises’s community transport service after a break of nearly ten months. The two Hopper buses were laid up at the beginning of the first lockdown. After a successful bid for funding from the National Lottery and Social Enterprise Support Fund, we have been able to take on a part-time co-ordinator to help promote and boost the service to residents of Saltash and outlying parishes.
The Hopper Shopper will run every Wednesday to Saltash retail parks and Tamar View via the Fore Street, and is also available for group trips such as the Landulph/Cargreen visit to the Christmas Festival Window Wanderland at the beginning of the month or Tamar View for lunch.
The buses couldn’t run without our volunteer drivers who are looking forward to welcoming back their regular travellers. All Covid-safety precautions have been taken to ensure the buses are as safe as possible - we just ask all that travel to use masks and the hand sanitiser before travelling.
For information on all the Hopper services or to book a place, contact Al at the Hub Tel. 01752 848348.
Spreading a little Christmas cheer
Our volunteers have put together 68 fabulous boxes, which will be delivered by our Hoppers during the next few days. The lucky recipients have all been nominated by Saltash residents, so we know they’re all going to people who deserve a little bit of Christmas Cheer.
We’ve also given out some boxes from our Hub, which have been well received. Thank you to everyone who has donated gifts and goodies for the boxes, and to Western Power for their generous funding.
Update on plans for 2021
Although all of our activities are still suspended, Dementia Voice PL12 is busy making plans for next year when hopefully we will be able to get together again. We are liaising with the people who run 'Turning the Cogs' to ensure that this amazingly effective cognitive stimulation therapy continues to be available in Saltash.
We are also liaising with those who run the Hopper buses to arrange some much needed short trips out for our service users. We hope to run our first trip in January to a local lunch venue which will definitely be something to look forward to.
Co-op Local Community Fund
We’ve just been chosen as one of the 3 local causes supported by the Co-op Local Community Fund, to fund our Digital Inclusion project.
Every time Co-op members buy Co-op branded products or services, they will give local causes a helping hand; for every purchase, the Co-op pay into a Community Fund to benefit local causes. If you’re a Co-op member, you can help us by nominating Community Enterprises PL12 as your chosen cause; simply follow this link https://www.coop.co.uk/local-causes.
The more Co-op members choose our cause, the more funding we’ll receive to help Saltash residents benefit fully from the opportunities that the internet and technology can provide. This could range from learning how to do an online shop, learning about security online, online banking, ordering a prescription, or joining in a Zoom call with family or friends.
Please spread the word, and tell your family and friends to choose us!
Where would we be without volunteers?
Our team of volunteers have been amazing this year, working tirelessly to help those who need it.
They stood in queues for hours to shop for people who were self-isolating.
They delivered and collected jigsaws and books to help keep people occupied (we now have a collection of over 300 jigsaws which have all been donated!).
They hand-delivered 5,000 letters, giving details of the help and support available in and around Saltash.
They put together a really useful list of all the shops and businesses open during lockdown.
They’ve collected, sorted and distributed food through the Community Fridge & Larder.
They’ve made over 1,000 face masks, with all the sale proceeds going towards our community projects.
They’ve done so many other things besides, with no renumeration except a 'Thank You', and the knowledge that they’re helping their community.
As we move into 2021, we will have more opportunities for Volunteering, in a variety of roles. If you can spare a few hours a month, and would like to help your community, then we’d love to hear from you. Simply email firstname.lastname@example.org for a volunteer application form.
The Community Hub remains central to everything we do! From here, we run our enterprises. We also operate recycling schemes, have a library of information on local organisations, and support small local businesses through the Community Shop; over 20 local crafters now sell their quality gifts and goods, and hold a twice-monthly produce market.
The Community Shop was short-listed in the Good Retail Awards, recognised as one of the top 5 community shops in the country. This Christmas, the message 'Shop Local' has meant that Fore Street - and the Community Shop - has been busy with Christmas shoppers eager to avoid the Plymouth crowds and see the wonderful window displays and Window Wanderland displays.
Community Fridge and Larder Fridge
Around 10.2 million tonnes of food and drink that could have been consumed ends up being thrown away annually - from retailers, the hospitality industry and households, at a cost of £20bn.
We set up our Community Fridge and Larder as we wanted to encourage our local community to see that good food can be shared and eaten instead of going to waste.
Our aim is to remove the stigma associated with receiving free food. Unlike a food bank, our Community Fridge and Larder is not means tested and anyone in the community can give to, or take food from the fridge, allowing food that would have been wasted to be shared with local people.
Also, while food banks handle only non-perishable foods, our fridge means fresh goods are also able to be shared. We regularly have quantities of fruit and veg, filled rolls, eggs, baked goods, bread, tinned food and potatoes.
The Community Fridge and Larder is open during the following times over the festive season:
Tuesday 22nd December 2.30 – 4.30pm Thursday 24th December 10am –12noon Tuesday 29th December 10am – 12noon Tuesday 5th January 2.30 – 4.30pm
After the festive season our opening hours will be:
We have a small but growing team of enthusiastic volunteers who help run the fridge, manning the fridge and larder itself, keeping it clean and tidy and well stocked, and collecting food donations from local businesses.
If you would like to join us, please pop in to the Hub and pick up and volunteer application form or email email@example.com
Thanks to funding from the Saltash Town Council, we were able to renovate and adapt the Citizens Advice offices, to create a smart, covid-safe environment which will prove invaluable to Saltash residents over the coming months and years.
We couldn’t have achieved anything without our Volunteers, but equally, we need to thank some partners and organisations. Waitrose & Partners for their generous support, Saltash Town Council, our Funders including Western Power, Cornwall Communities Foundation, Co-op Local Community Fund, the Emergency Food Assistance Fund, and Cornwall Council.
We wish all our Members a very Happy Christmas, and a healthy and happy 2021. This year has been long and difficult for us all. Let's look forward, together, to a better year to follow.
With best wishes from all the Directors of Community Enterprises PL12: Peter, Jo, Sam, Rose, Carol, Peter, Julia, Sue, Jo, Richard and David.