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We've joined forces to launch a new crowd-fund initiative aimed at supporting struggling families during the current coronavirus emergency.

The One City Fund gives people a simple way of backing the city’s efforts to support vulnerable residents during the pandemic so that no-one gets left behind. Organisations, businesses and individuals can go to the crowd-fund site www.spacehive.com/onecityfund to donate money, get behind the project and support their city.

The initiative is a collaboration between the City of Wolverhampton Council, the Wolverhampton Voluntary Sector Council (WVCS) and local organisations including Beacon Centre for the Blind, Citizens Advice Bureau, Ethnic Minority Council, Gatis Street Community Space, The Well food bank, Wolverhampton Credit Union and our Money Smart service.

Donations raised through the fund will go directly to local organisations supporting people in severe financial hardship in the city so they can get the help they need during this difficult time.

The project initially aims to raise £10,000, with the City of Wolverhampton Council pledging an additional £10,000, raising the total to £20,000. Once reached, 60% of the funds will be distributed to the partner organisations. The remaining 40% will be made available as small grants to grass-root community groups who are supporting local people during the crisis.

Agencies across Wolverhampton have already come together to support the city’s most vulnerable residents at this difficult time. But there is a further group of people who are in desperate need – people living in fuel poverty, those on zero hours contracts whose hours have been cut, homeless people, disabled people, people with mental health issues and people who have no access to technology who are unable to access important services or information.

Leader of the Council, Councillor Ian Brookfield, said:

We have launched this crowd funding campaign because we have been inspired by the incredible community response to the coronavirus emergency and we know that many more people want to help.

I would like to encourage everyone to donate, no matter how big or small. You can make a big difference, helping local charities and voluntary and community groups provide a lifeline to some of the city’s most vulnerable residents as we all face this crisis together.

I know that we can hit the target and start helping our most vulnerable as soon as possible. This is a resilient, caring and community-spirited city and I’m sure we can all come together to support this initiative so that no-one gets left behind.

Chief Executive of Wolverhampton Voluntary Sector Council Ian Darch said:

Covid-19 has hit many people in our city very hard. The One City Fund, administered by WVSC and supported by the City of Wolverhampton Council and other partners, is part of our collective response.

By working together we can support those most in need and help to ensure that we emerge truly as ‘One City’, working together and supporting each other in times of need.

I encourage businesses and citizens to contribute whatever they can afford to a campaign that will show the very best of our city as we all pull together to overcome the current challenge.

To make a donation, please visit www.spacehive.com/onecityfund. Organisations wishing to make an application to the small grants fund are asked to email Saffi Price on sprice@wolverhamptonvsc.org.uk. The grants will be administered by Wolverhampton Voluntary Sector Council.

Spacehive, the crowd-funding platform powering Crowdfund Wolves, has waived its 5% fee for all projects created during the current lockdown which means all monies raised will go directly to local third sector organisations.

Crowdfund Wolves provides a single portal where people with project ideas can build support from their community, ensure their plans are viable, pitch for funding from the crowd and partners at the same time, and share the impact they have created.

One of several projects to be successful through Crowdfund Wolves is HugglePets, a local community organisation in Wolverhampton who managed to raise more than £96,000 to build a community aquarium and sensory room which opened last year. The sensory room and aquarium benefits children and adults within the local community who live with poor mental health, autism, Alzheimer’s Disease, stress, anxiety, depression and sensory disabilities.

For more information, please visit www.wolverhamptonvsc.org.uk/onecityfund.  

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