Funding for community enterprise and schemes in Haverhill

Isaac Regan (4), Cllr John Burns, Elaine McManus, Ivy Webb (2) and Archie Pannell (4)
Isaac Regan (4), Cllr John Burns, Elaine McManus, Ivy Webb (2) and Archie Pannell (4)

Two schemes to improve the physical and mental health of Haverhill residents as well as a social enterprise offering childcare have received a funding boost.

Catch 22, Suffolk Positive Futures and Suffolk Mind have received thousands of pounds from St Edmundsbury Borough Council’s Community Chest funding.

Meanwhile, Cllr John Burns has supported Stepping Stones Childcare and Education, which runs before and after school childcare to help working parents.

In Haverhill, Catch 22, Suffolk Positive Futures has identified a need to improve the health of young people aged 10 to 19, and engage them in activities which help encourage social cohesion and reduce crime and anti-social behaviour.

It will receive £8,189 towards free weekly sports sessions on Friday evenings which will offer a chance for young people to let off some steam playing football, cricket, dodgeball or street golf.

Suffolk Mind has been awarded £4,970.30 for an ongoing ecotherapy allotment project in Haverhill designed to aid mental, physical and emotional health and wellbeing. The money will pay for a mental health trained facilitator, volunteer expenses and marketing.

Cllr Robert Everitt, cabinet member for families and communities for St Edmundsbury, said: “I’m delighted that we are able to invest in our communities through these projects.”

Stepping Stones caters for youngsters from less than a year old up to 12 with full nursery education also on offer. Like any other childcare business, the community interest venture has to comply with regulations and was facing a significant bill to meet Health and Safety requirements.

In stepped Cllr Burns who gave £579.20 of his borough coouncil locality budget to cover the costs. The money paid for fire saftey equipment, a water temperature thermometer and the cost of a fire health and safety risk assessment required to keep the business fully functioning.

Elaine McManus, who runs Stepping Stones, said: “As a community interest company we want to use what profits we do make for the public good.

“That means reinvesting in our services to the benefit of our children, while keeping childcare costs down so that local parents aren’t prevented from being able to go out to work.

“John’s help means we can continue to focus on the thing that we are good at, which benefits both the children and parents of Haverhill.”