Harrogate charity gets £1,000 to help the vulnerable

A Harrogate charity dedicated to helping older and vulnerable people live independently has been awarded £1,000.

The Harrogate Easier Living Project (HELP) will be spending the generous donation from the Yorkshire Building Society Charitable Foundation on paint, brushes, and decorating equipment.

This will help with the practical support the charity provides to its service users through its help at home scheme, including decorating, basic DIY, and gardening.

HELP was nominated to receive the money by Yorkshire Building Society acquisition manager Kathryn Silkstone as part of the ‘small change big difference’ scheme, which is funded by more than half a million society members who contribute annual pence from their interest so it can be donated to smaller charities and good causes across the UK.

Kathryn said: “I’d heard about the fantastic work HELP does to support older people in our community and knew they made a real difference to the people they support.

“The Charitable Foundation is all about helping smaller, grassroots charities, so I hope this money will have a real impact.”

In the past 12 months, the help at home team have carried out over 300 decorating, DIY and gardening jobs for older and vulnerable people in the Harrogate district.

HELP project manager Frances Elliot said: “Although we receive funding from statutory services, it doesn’t cover all the material costs such as paint and brushes.

“With a large proportion of our clients unable to make donations towards the work we do for them we are increasingly reliant on generous support from initiatives such as the Yorkshire Building Society Charitable Foundation.”

Kathryn and a number of her colleagues from Yorkshire Building Society will also be donating their time by volunteering with the charity’s help at home team.

They will then be helping with one of the many garden makeovers HELP carries out for its clients in the spring.

Based at Community House on East Parade, HELP runs services delivered by volunteers and a small team of staff to support older or vulnerable people and those with a disability to remain living independently.

In addition to the help at home service, HELP also supports people to get out to appointments and social outings through its opening doors service and operates a sitting service for full-time carers to allow them a short break from their caring role through its carers’ time off service.

For more information about HELP and how you can access their services, visit www.harcvs.org.uk/HELP or call 01423 813090.