National care leavers week

National care leavers week begins on Wednesday 24 October – if you could share the following information to help vulnerable young people. We’d be most grateful:
Be the Difference between homelessness and a brighter future
Mia is 18. So far in her life she’s been exposed to abuse, family drug and alcohol problems, bereavement and lost her home.
Mia moved from friend’s house to friend’s house until she found Bea.
Bea became her Stepping Stones carer gave Mia the support she needed to begin her life again. Mia is now studying and volunteering in her local community to gain work experience. Knowing that Bea is there to offer her guidance and a safety net, gave Mia the confidence to start her life again.
If you’d love to help a vulnerable young person – ask about becoming a ‘Stepping Stones carer’. You could really help by offering a bedroom to and mentoring young care leavers in Somerset towns. It provides them with a safe space, a ‘stepping stone’ to adulthood while they begin studies or a career.
Annabel and Linda live together in Bridgwater in a Stepping Stones placement, with Linda’s two rescue dogs. Linda has been a stepping stone for years now, partly with her husband and then as a single carer when he passed away. She shares how great it feels to help someone: “I really enjoy it. The Stepping stones team are so good at matching the right young people with the right carer and they’re very supportive. Some placements have worked so well for us we’ve had them with us well into their twenties. We still get Christmas cards and photos of the families they went on to have.’”
Sue in Frome has been a ‘Stepping Stone’ for just over a year now and explains the mutual benefits.
“After my divorce and my kids had gone off to university the house felt a bit lonely really. I enjoy having the company and a young person around again, plus I love knowing that I’m making someone else’s life better!”

Find out more about ‘Stepping Stones’ including info on allowances, training and support and discounts package – Call 0800 587 9900, visit www. or come to an information evening:

Help us spread the word on fostering and stepping stones – share a poster for us!
Many thanks
Caroline Cook
Communications Officer
Somerset County Council

Bulk Buy Fuel Loans

We know living without mains gas can be expensive. If you live in Somerset, are a homeowner or private tenant and rely on oil, Calor gas, LPG, wood or coal to heat your home, we may be able to help you to spread the cost of your bulk buy over six months*
Find out more: call 01823 461099, or email Your local, not for profit lender

Wessex Resolutions CIC
Heatherton Park Studios, Bradford on Tone, Taunton, TA4 1EU

* Subject to Status

W820 23102018 Appeal for witnesses

W820 23102018 Appeal for witnesses
Police are appealing for witnesses following a serious road traffic collision on the A39 in West Somerset on Monday 22 October.
The three vehicle collision happened at about 2pm between West Quantoxhead and Kilve. A Vauxhall Corsa travelling east was in collision with a Rover which was travelling in the opposite direction. A Citroen was also involved in the collision.
A number of people were taken to hospital but only one person – a woman in her 70s – remains in a critical condition. All the other casualties sustained less serious injuries.
The road was closed until shortly after 10pm to allow emergency services to deal with the incident.
Police keen to hear from anyone who was in the area at the time of the incident who may have information to help enquiries. They would particularly like to hear from motorists who may have dash cam footage of the collision.
Anyone able to help is asked to call the police on 101 quoting 5218236493
Alternatively, you can contact Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111 or report it on-line using the following link quoting the above reference number.
You were sent this message because you are in the following group(s): Timberscombe (Timberscombe, TA247TS).

Community Info

Community Matters

Community News
Community Employment Hubs
These exist across West Somerset to help with searching and applying for work, offering support with CV writing, assistance with interviews. No booking is required, just drop in for free friendly help and support, see website. Please help spread the word.
Williton Children’s Centre, 9.30 – 12.30pm every Tuesday, T: 01984 635980
Stogursey at ‘The Well’, The Greyhound, Lime St, 9.30 – 12.30pm fortnightly on Wednesdays, T: 01278 732490
Watchet ‘The Sanctuary’, 9.30 – 12.30pm every Thursday, T: 01984 248169
Dulverton Library, Fore Street, 10am – 12.30pm held every first Thursday of the month, T: 0300 123 2224
Minehead ‘The Bridge’ @ The Hub, Hopcott Road, 9.30am – 12 noon held every Friday, T: 01643 707598
Big Lottery Fund: It’s changing its name
The Big Lottery Fund has announced that it will be changing its name from 30 January 2019. It will then be known as the National Lottery Community Fund. It supports projects that bring people together to make a difference to their health, wellbeing and the environment.
The change is being made in order to make it clearer what the organisation is and does, and help those who buy tickets see the link to its work. For more information see webpage.
Community newsletter launched
Engage is a charity whose aim is to support the development of vibrant, effective and influential voluntary and community sectors in West Somerset and in Taunton Deane. They provide a range of services and have recently launched a newsletter which includes news and information relevant to the voluntary and community sector. If you don’t already receive this you can subscribe by emailing:
They also welcome relevant contributions, which can be sent to the same email. For further information see Engage’s website.

West Somerset Advice – Stakeholders Consultation and AGM
Wednesday 7 November at 10am, Minehead Methodist Church, The Avenue – Everyone welcome
Somerset Portuguese Association – Music evening – 10 November
You are invited to enjoy an evening of live music and dance hosted by the Somerset Portuguese Association. The event runs from 4pm-11pm at St Andres Church Hall, Taunton. Tickets are £2.50 for members and £5 non-members. For further details E: or T: 01278 238662.

Somerset Portuguese Association – Music evening – 10 November
You are invited to enjoy an evening of live music and dance hosted by the Somerset Portuguese Association. The event runs from 4pm-11pm at St Andrews Church Hall, Taunton. Tickets are £2.50 for members and £5 non-members. Further details by contacting or T: 01278 238662.

More Events in the Area
Please see Visit Exmoor, Watchet Events, Minehead Events and Quantock Hills Walking Events website.

Council Meetings
Future Council Meetings
For future meetings please see website.

Council News
For the latest news releases see link.

Joint Equality Objectives for Somerset – Consultation Deadline 31 October
Public sector organisations across Somerset are working together to identify the main objectives they should set to fulfil their duties under the Equality Act 2010. Please follow the link to comment on the objectives and actions proposed. As the deadline looms please also help raise awareness amongst groups and individuals you think may be interested, see website.
NHS Somerset Drop-in session
What do you think about health and care services in Somerset? Join a drop-in session. Options:
Taunton: The Albemarle Centre, Albemarle Rd, Wednesday 14 Nov 10am – 2pm
Minehead: The Hub Soft Play Centre, Hopcott Rd, TA24 6DJ on Friday 26 Nov 13:30 – 17:30
There are other drop-ins to find out more email:
Training, Jobs and Volunteering
Valued Volunteers Needed for Community Employment Hubs in West Somerset
Could you support people in your community towards work? Help needed with CV writing, researching and applying for work, interview preparation to raise confidence and self-esteem. To become a volunteer, you need the desire to help others and if you think you could be a volunteer please contact Colleen Blake T: 07932316158 or E:
Grant and Funding Opportunities
South West Foundation Small Grants Programme
The Grants scheme aims to improve the lives of local communities in the South West region of England, particularly in rural areas, market and small coastal towns. Small voluntary and community sector groups with annual running costs of less than £25,000 and not more than 12 months’ running costs in free reserves may apply for a grant of up to £1,000. The majority of grant awards tend to be for £200-£500. Priority will be given to support organisations in rural areas, market and coastal towns. For more information see South West Foundation’s Small Grants Programme.
Please note they do not put the application forms on their website as they like to speak to potential applicants first.
Somerset Skills and Learning (SSLCIC) – Community Learning – Deadline is 5 Nov
Do you have a community project you need to fund? SSL may be able to help.
Somerset Community Learning Partnership funding is provided by the Skills Funding Agency and especially encourages applications that meet specific needs and gaps that have been identified across Somerset.
SSL consider funding projects which aim to develop learning opportunities within Somerset’s most disadvantaged wards and under-represented groups. For more information see website.

Big Lottery Fund Digital Fund – Opens 22 Oct – Deadline 3 December
Investment in digital technology as a means of engaging with customers is growing. This new Big Lottery Fund programme offers substantial grants for established community organisations to use digital approaches to help and support people.
Grants are up to £500,000 for UK charities and community organisations to use digital tools and approaches to support people and communities to thrive. For more information see website.

SINePost Newsletter
Provides helpful statistics for our district, which can be invaluable for producing funding bids, see website.

My Community Web Site
For information, inspiration, resources, grants, community network and advice, please see link.

Other places to look for possible sources of funding include Engage, Funding Central, Community Council for Somerset, Turn 2 Us, GRIN and Just Act websites.

In this newsletter we are pleased to be able to offer information about funding opportunities, support services and training. However please note that by including this information West Somerset Council is not recommending or endorsing the products / facilities / services, simply providing a sign-posting function.

Community Matters Contact:
Please email your news, events and other opportunities to:

Cllr Dave Westcott – Lead Member for Community & Customer, please see our website for details.
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