Local organisations awarded over half a million pounds to improve wellbeing

A series of projects targeting health and social inequalities have secured a total of £556,633 from Falkirk’s Health Inequalities and Wellbeing Fund.

Launched earlier this year by Falkirk Health and Social Care Partnership, the fund is open to third sector organisations, community groups, and statutory bodies taking creative approaches to tackle health and social inequalities and improve the wellbeing of people in Falkirk.

During two competitive rounds of applications, 15 of 38 bids secured funding – ranging from £10,225 to £50,000 – to be spent over the next two years to widen access to services based in local communities.

Patricia Cassidy, Chief Officer, Falkirk Health and Social Care Partnership said: “A huge thank you goes to all those who submitted bids. It is clear that Falkirk’s third and voluntary sector is well-placed to deliver innovative local support. This funding will help organisations put their ideas into reality, helping communities to become healthier, fairer and more inclusive.”

The 15 successful organisations and projects are:

  • 1st Step Development Ventures
  • Community-Led Support Team, Falkirk Health and Social Care Partnership
  • Cyrenians
  • Denny Community Support Groups
  • Falkirk and District Association for Mental Health (FDAMH)
  • Falkirk Council Community Learning and Development
  • Food Train
  • Forth Environment Link
  • Forth Valley Sensory Centre
  • FOSS (Friends of Scottish Settlers)
  • KLSB Community Group
  • Scottish Families Affected by Alcohol and Drugs
  • Strathcarron Hospice
  • Sustainable Thinking Community Interest Company (CIC)
  • Under the Trees

A further six projects, applying for funds totalling over £166,000, were commended by the Health Inequalities and Wellbeing Fund Panel and have been asked to develop further information or plans prior to a final decision to grant funding.

You can read more about three of the successful bids below, or view the full list of successful applicants and short project descriptions. 

Strathcarron Hospice

Providing specialist end-of-life care for people in Forth Valley, Strathcarron Hospice provides support free of charge wherever, and whenever, it is needed – in people’s homes, hospitals, care homes, and in Strathcarron’s Hospice in Denny.

The charity has been awarded £38,925 to fund a new member of staff dedicated to helping connect people experiencing feelings of loss and isolation following bereavement. The Bereavement Community Connector project will support people to access local interest groups and peer support. This pilot will focus on normalising grief and supporting individuals, progress toward a whole system approach to coordinate existing networks and create sustainable support capacity within local communities.

Food Train

Receiving a total of £39,732, charity Food Train plans to employ two new part-time Development Officers to develop the charity’s support for older people by introducing new services that will reach a wider group of people.

Expanding into the Falkirk area last year, Food Train is a highly acclaimed Scottish Charity working to tackle malnutrition and loneliness among older people, operating in nine other Scottish local authority regions.

The Falkirk Food Train network currently offers a range of support services, including its award-winning home shopping and delivery service, and its household support, meal sharing and befriending schemes.

KLSB Community Group

Pictured John McMorran, chairman of KLSB Community Group, with kitchen utensils that will be used in the group's community kitchen.KLSB Community Group opened a small community pantry just before COVID-19 struck, and immediately got to work alongside Stenhousemuir Football Club and Falkirk Council to help thousands of people put food on the table during the pandemic, running a food distribution centre out of the Dobbie Hall.

The group is now establishing a new community hub and kitchen, where they will use £29,069.42 awarded from the Health Inequalities and Wellbeing Fund to run several classes for members of the local community in Stenhousemuir.

With a focus on mental health and wellbeing, classes will build confidence and teach cooking skills while also promoting healthier eating.