Annual General Meeting, 7 December 2011 – Annual Report 2010-2011
Since my last Chairman`s Report a year ago, Bognor CAN has gone from strength to strength. On a personal note, I was delighted to have been elected as a Town and District councillor for Pevensey Ward last May, one of the key areas where Bognor CAN focuses its activity and projects. The other very important point to mention is that from May 2010, Bognor CAN was awarded a £146,000 grant from the National Lottery – Reaching Communities which has and is making a huge difference to what it is able to achieve.
New projects have been developed such as Community Leaders, Cook & Eat, Fit Kids, and Fitness for Older People to name but a few and we have sustained our existing activities such Mixed Martial Arts for children and young people – these have all been very successful and several new projects are also in the pipeline.
The vibrancy of Bognor CAN is beyond doubt, focussing as it does in the North Bognor Regis area, and it has very much become a `flagship` especially in these times of severe cutbacks and austerity. In such a challenging environment, Bognor CAN is very much a beacon of success. Long before the concept of the `Big Society` became trendy Bognor CAN was out there making a big difference in a big part of the Town – the `Big Society` in real action from the bottom up!
What is also true about the continued success of Bognor CAN is that it is one of the most diverse and varied charitable organisations known in the whole of West Sussex and possibly in the South of England – nothing is `off limits`. Behind this `can do` philosophy is Bognor CAN Development Manager, Carol Fullick, who
has been tireless in the way she has driven forward her ideas and vision of what could be achieved, in sometimes very difficult circumstances. As a result, Carol deservedly received the Arun District Council Chairman`s Community Hero Award back in September, as well as an award from Bognor Regis Town Council for `services to Bognor Regis`.
However, she would be the first to say that she could not have achieved half of what she has without the help, support and encouragement from a hard-working team of volunteers and partners ranging from local councils, businesses and voluntary organisations. A special mention must also be made of the fantastic support and help given by Hilary Spencer, Chief Executive of Council for Voluntary Service Arunwide, and Arun Neighbourhood Network.
What is also very heartening is that Bognor CAN has generated over £11,000 of its own funding in the past year, besides Lottery and other forms of grant funding. It has managed to achieve this figure by doing things that really involve the local community such as the Town Show in August, a number of community car boot sales and the recent very successful Christmas Fair.
This continues to be an exciting time in an ever increasingly challenging climate, in which the demands and calls on Bognor CAN are likely to increase over the coming months and years. However I am confident that with Carol, her support staff, volunteers and the community behind her, Bognor CAN will reach new heights of success.
Roger Nash – Chairman – Bognor CAN
Development Manager’s Report
During 2010/2011, Bognor CAN has had a very busy and exciting year.On receiving notification of our successful grant application from the Big Lottery – Reaching Communities in March 2010, we started our project ‘Bognor CAN – develop and thrive’ on 1st May 2010. An official launch was held on 11th June 2010, attended by members of the community and the Bognor Regis Town Mayor Sandra Daniells.
In line with our agreed outcomes to the Big Lottery, whose grant covers all our core costs, we promoted our Big Lottery grant success and attended/delivered several local events to highlight our planned activities, which included a Health Promotion day in partnership with Bognor Regis Football Club, Bognor CAN’s annual Community Town Show, four community car boot activity days, Bognor Regis Town Council – Hell and High Water community event and a Community Christmas Fair.
We started to plan our social club for older people and secured funding of £3,800 from Arun District Council’s main grant programme to develop it. We promoted the opportunity of the social club for older people at our Community Town Show on 21st August 2010 and through our summer activities. Through informal consultation, the social club was launched on 29th October 2010. Further consultation has taken place since the start of the project to determine what activities are wanted and needed by the group. The club continues to run on Wednesday afternoons from 1pm to 3pm, hosting a variety of activities such as arts and crafts, tea and chat and cake baking. We received additional funding from Arun District Council’s Health & Wellbeing Partnership for a Cook & Eat social lunch club for older people every Tuesday from 12 noon to 2pm. Older people come together to plan, cook and eat the meal they have prepared.
During our summer activities for young people, older people joined in some of the activities, in particular cooking and arts & crafts. With funding of £10,000 secured from Arun District Council’s Health & Wellbeing Partnership, we launched four fitness activities throughout the year:
Dance Aerobics – for sixteen years of age plus, held on Wednesday evenings
Fitness for Older People – on Tuesday mornings
Zumba – classes on Thursdays for eighteen years of age plus
Fit Kids – through school holiday periods and weekly Street Dance classes for young people.
In addition to the four Health & Wellbeing funded activities, we have sustained our weekly Mixed Martial Arts classes with funding of £9,750 from the Sussex Community Foundation – Sport Relief and Arun District Council main grant programme of £4,500. The Martial Arts Classes are run for three hours on Fridays: Infants 3 to 7 years, Juniors 8 to 12 years and Seniors 13 years upwards. Parents are also able to participate in the Martial Arts class with their young person.
Seventeen children and young people from our classes were selected to attend the Southern Championship Martial Arts Tournament at the Mountbatten Centre in Portsmouth on Saturday 26th March 2011. They achieved 14 medals and one trophy.
We received £3,938 from Arun District Council Health & Wellbeing Partnership to sustain our Cook & Eat Project, now referred to as ‘Eat Well’ courses for people with limited cooking ability and poor diets. These are run as four-weekly courses for up to 10 people from the local community on each course and also referred by organisations with whom we work, such as Arun Mind. The four weekly courses followed our weekly cook and eat sessions which started on 31st January 2011 and then 7th March 2011. Further courses are planned for 2011/2012. In 2010 we delivered a four week summer activity programme from Monday 2nd August to
Friday 27th August. We provided a wide range of activities for children and young people including Arts, Crafts, Cooking, Fashion, Sport, Dance and ended with an
intergenerational, indoor war-time street party. We received £2,500 from the Sussex Community Foundation and the sport was funded through Arun District Council Health and Wellbeing Partnership.
In addition to the four week summer activity scheme, we delivered football each day during the spring half term in February.
During the summer activities, older people mentored and supported young people in activities such as sewing and cooking. When consulted informally, older people expressed they really enjoyed working with the younger generation through the holiday period. We promoted volunteer opportunities through our activities and events, East Arun Volunteer Bureau, organisations with whom we work e.g. the Prince’s Trust, through advertising on our website and the websites of other organisations and promotion through activity days and special events.
We have delivered four volunteer training opportunities: Two Cook & Eat Cookery Leaders’ training with a Community Chef, funded through the
PCT. We trained three new Bognor CAN volunteer Cook & Eat trainers. An additional Cook & Eat training session for our Community Cook & Eat trainers was
delivered by Kitchen Academy. Community Leaders Training was funded through the Arun District Council’s Local Strategic Partnership (LSP) and delivered by Voicewaves through the Working Together Project. Fourteen community volunteers participated in the training and thirteen completed
the course achieving a level three Open College Network accreditation.
The Trained Community Leaders are working with Bognor CAN and the community in many ways including supporting the Arun Safer Partnership to promote a cleaner, safer community and the Pevensey Ward Neighbourhood Agreement. They have been and are involved in planning and delivering Bognor CAN community fundraising initiatives and local community events such as Bounce Back & Put a Spring in Your Step held on 19th February 2011 and Bognor CAN’s Community Town Show on 3rd September 2011, promoting good health, the environment and community safety.
Volunteer Parenting Support training has been delivered to five community volunteers and will be repeated in 2011/ 2012 to an additional group of volunteers recruited through organisations with whom we work. The training was delivered by Practical Parenting UK. Trained community volunteer Parenting Supporters will be supporting parents who are struggling with challenging behaviour by their children aged 11 to 13 years.
In May 2010 we prepared the job specification and procedures for the Project Assistant’s post which was advertised in the local press, Bognor Regis Observer, the Bognor Regis Jobcentre Plus and through websites of organisations with whom we work. We received twenty three applications and interviewed six candidates on 22nd July 2010. The interviewees were Council for Voluntary Service Chief Executive Hilary Spencer, volunteer Yvonne Lowe and me. Rachael Atfield was appointed and took up the position of Project Assistant on 1st October 2010.
We are expecting an increasing demand on our organisation to develop new projects and activities to address the needs of the community in the current economic climate and therefore have lots of plans for 2011/2011. We would like to thank everyone who has supported Bognor CAN and made it the successful organisation it is today, partnership working with a host of organisations, volunteers and the community.
Special thanks go to Paul Foreman, Business Development Officer from Arun Neighbourhood Network, Andrew Devon, Fundraising Consultant who provided support to me when writing the Big Lottery application and Hilary
Spencer Chief Executive of Council for Voluntary Service Arunwide.
Carol Fullick – Development Manager Bognor Community Action Network