Bollington Community Association

The Bridgend Centre run by the Bollington Community Association aims to create a positive community life, especially for those feeling isolated in the small Cheshire town. For over 25 years they have run a range of programmes including befriending services for isolated older people, a drop in cafe, advice on social housing and benefits, IT classes for older people and a community choir.

Rebecca Lea, the Centre Manager, says they are increasingly aware of how isolated many in the local community are.
“There are many older people living in this area who are on their own and do not have much social contact from week to week. Local bus services have been reduced in recent times, so there are fewer opportunities for people to travel out of the area, therefore our Centre provides a place for people to come and socialise, get involved with activities and make a difference to their community by volunteering.” In the last year they’ve had over 18,000 people though the door – an increase of over 20%. The charity however is ambitious and wants to do much more, especially as other services in the local area have been cut back.

The Foundation’s Trustees were so impressed by the charity’s work and its plans for growth that they have awarded £150,000 – £50,000 more than the charity originally applied for. This will enable the charity to purchase the Centre, giving them security for the future and the ability to expand their much-needed services.

Rebecca says they couldn’t quite believe it when they got the news.
“When I heard that our application to the Garfield Weston Foundation had not only been successful but that we had been awarded £150,000, I felt very emotional and overwhelmed. This funding will have a hugely beneficial impact on our charity. We will be able to purchase our building so that we are here for many, many years to come, ensuring that the most vulnerable people in our community can get help when they need it.”