Newsletter while we are unable to meet - May 2020


25th May 2020

Grants - Grants assessment has changed since lockdown.  Dorset Reclaim, which provides our clients with furniture, and the carpet shops are now closed.  Professionals aren’t visiting families, so referrals from them are less.  When a referral comes, it is more complicated to sort out, eg furniture - we are usually now providing an Argos e-voucher for new furniture and rather than a £150 grant to Dorset Reclaim we are having to provide £250 to buy new furniture.  Carpets are having to be left until the shops reopen.   However we are now having to provide more funding for small grants distributed by Citizens Advice and those professionals working are needing many more Co-op vouchers.  We have decided to re-order more.  We have also been approached by the Town Council to see if we would receive referrals from the Coronovirus support team. 

Donations – We are receiving many very generous donations via the website and directly from local people who do not have internet access. 

Accounts and annual report - The accounts for 2019 – 2020 are currently with the independent examiner.

Trustees - At the last meeting the treasurer had to tender his resignation due to pressure of work.   We have done some advertising for a new treasurer in parish magazines, but this was all curtailed by Coronavirus.   If you might be interested, please e-mail us and we will send you the job description.

The rest of the trustees are in close contact with each other and met recently on Zoom.

Fundraising - Sadly we will have to cancel the coffee morning on 4 July, as it is highly unlikely that churches will be allowed to be open for this type of event where social distancing will be very difficult.  We do hope that the cream tea outside in a Puddletown garden will be able to go ahead on Sept 20th. 

Open meeting – we have decided to postpone the open meeting until next Spring, when there may be many issues coming out of this pandemic to discuss and how it has impacted on poverty in the area.   

Holiday lunch club – DPA have decided to give a grant of £2000 to the newly formed charity “Dorchester Family Support” which runs the holiday lunch club for children, who are on free school meals.  Due to Coronavirus this looks as though numbers will double from 100 to 200 families this summer.  All donations gratefully received.

Food bank - We received the following note from a DPA volunteer, which we thought you would be interested to read:

I had been to the food bank at Dorford and they said they were struggling.  Consequently with my neighbour we have set up a street collection.  We have put a box in mine and her porch - labelled.  Her husband has leafleted the street.   Stuff is coming in thick and fast.  People are amazing. This morning with my neighbour, we took round two enormous wheelbarrows FULL of food.   I was truly astonished by the response.





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