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Scheme to tackle social isolation relaunched amid pandemic

PUBLISHED: 11:28 11 June 2020 | UPDATED: 11:28 11 June 2020

East Suffolk Council's headquarters in Lowestoft. Picture: Thomas Chapman

East Suffolk Council's headquarters in Lowestoft. Picture: Thomas Chapman

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A council has relaunched a scheme to help people who are struggling with social isolation and loneliness during the continuing coronavirus crisis.

East Suffolk Council has relaunched the Hidden Needs Programme, which was originally started in 2018 to support older people and families with limited resources who were struggling with social isolation and loneliness.

The council has now adapted the scheme amid the continuing pandemic with a fund of £100,000.

This will help fund projects that support people of all ages who are particularly vulnerable during this time.

The council is now encouraging community groups and voluntarily organisations to bring to life projects which can help reduce social isolation and loneliness by applying to a grant of up to £10,000 through the scheme.

Letitia Smith, East Suffolk’s cabinet member for communities, leisure and tourism, said: “I am really pleased to be able to announce the relaunch of the Hidden Needs Grant Programme.

“A lot of work has already gone into tackling social isolation in East Suffolk.

“However, we know that this is a very unusual time and some people will be finding it very challenging as they have not been able to see family or friends during the lockdown.

“We want to encourage local community groups and voluntary organisations to submit innovative ideas for projects which can help those feeling social isolation to be more connected and supported in this challenging time.”

The scheme is now open for the first round applications, which must be submitted by July 17.

A second round will open on July 18 for applications which must be submitted by September 30.

Visit www.eastsuffolk.gov.uk/community/community-grants-and-funding/hidden-needs-grant-programme/ for further details.


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