Charity No 1177041
SPRING NEWSLETTER 2020
THE HEADLINE IS COVID-19
Following government and NHS guidelines about Public Health, handwashing posters were displayed around the community centre which underwent a deep clean with handles being cleaned by staff a few times per day as groups dwindled.
The school site closed first on 18th March and the community centre was closed to the public from 23rd March, although the Belmont Parish Council office is still running.
We have emailed, texted and talked to many group leaders and would like to thank everyone for their support during this difficult time. We are amazed at the ingenuity and community spirit as many groups are offering free online resources, Zoom meetings, telephone support and great photos. Please add to our Facebook page with any positive messages that you have and let us know if you would like to be featured on the BCA Website. Send any information and photos to firstname.lastname@example.org
We will of course let you know as soon as we are able to open again, so ‘watch this space’!
TOYS TO GIVE AWAY
Sadly, Belmont Baby and Toddler Group have ceased their sessions at the community centre. A coffee morning and sale of toys was held on 12th March with a brief presentation of cards to the volunteers, and thanks for their many years of association with BCA.
Many toys were sold or given away but there are lots left in the cupboards of Grange room. Due to the current Covid-19 restrictions they cannot be donated to charity shops so several other community venues are calling to collect but please let us know if you or your group would like to collect some, and they can be bagged up and labelled ready, if there are any left
FINANCES TAKE A HIT
Since lockdown, BCA has gone from a healthy level of activity each month to receiving zero income from hiring. As it takes £40,000 a year to operate the Community Centre, this leaves us in a precarious financial position, given that social distancing is likely to be in place for some months, and it is unclear when we will be able to re-open our facilities to community use. Our insurance claim, under a Business Interruption clause, was denied, as Covid 19 is classed as a new and emerging disease and is not covered under insurance policy wordings
On a more positive note, we have been helped by a Covid-19 Small Business Grant from the County Council, for which we are very grateful. We have had to furlough five staff. Trustees will be considering ways to reduce expenditure, most of which is unavoidable, for example, utilities, phone, music licence, refuse collection, insurance and servicing contracts.
FENCING OF COMMUNITY GARDEN
Following vandalism of the community garden, at the rear of the Community Centre, last summer, it was agreed to install a 6 foot mesh fence around the perimeter. Although this work has been commissioned, the contractor has been forced to suspend work until Coronavirus restrictions are lifted. This initiative is part funded by Belmont Parish Council and the County Council’s Area Action Partnership, in addition to our own resources. Again, we are grateful to those two organisations for their support.
Community garden created by Cheesy Waffles and the Wider World Project
CWP and the WWP have been keeping their clients’ spirits up and busy with fun activities and food parcels since ‘Lockdown’
Rock Your Socks – Saturday 21st March was World Down Syndrome Day, they encouraged members to share their ‘Odd Socks’ photos.