Hub at heart of the community

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This month we are focussing on a Connecting Ripon Network charity member at the heart of Ripon community.

Caroline King, Bookings and Volunteering Manager, said: “Ripon Community House was formerly the hospital wing of the old Ripon Workhouse. The CVS had a vision for the building and took advantage of the opportunity to develop this community resource to benefit local organisations. The building opened its doors to the public in 2006 and today houses local charities and provides a venue for a variety of groups.”

Many Connecting Ripon members including Age UK, Carers’ Resource, Dementia Forward, Ripon Community Link and Ripon and Rural Wellbeing Service are located at Ripon Community House.

Caroline said: “Having such a range of organisations under one roof helps with signposting people to the correct support, help or advice and means local people can use us as a one-stop shop. We pride ourselves on being flexible and willing to serve the needs of the community.”

As well as being the office base for local organisations, there are also many regular groups, sessions and meetings held in the building. Just some of the services and activities you, a family member, friend or neighbour may be interested in are included below. You can always pop in to reception weekdays to find out the latest news and opportunities.

Age UK holds computer courses in conjunction with the Adult Learning & Skills Service, which also offers a range of other courses including Maths, English computer skills and accounting (AAT).

Bridge Club runs three sessions a week and are always looking for new members who would like to give their brains a workout! For those who prefer to give their body a workout, there are various classes including Yoga and Pilates.

The Health Visitors and Children’s Centre sessions are well-attended with drop-in support available for those with small children. The Toy Library is a friendly group for babies and children up to age 8 and their parents to stay and play or borrow toys.

Carers’ Resource offers refreshments and support for those caring for others at monthly get-togethers.

The Ripon and Rural Voluntary Car Driving service provides a real lifeline to residents who struggle to get out and about. The team are always looking for more volunteers to help people get to appointments, day centres and social activities.

Community House Reception is staffed by a dedicated volunteer team. Caroline said: “We are always happy to hear from people who could fill in at short notice to cover when a volunteer is ill or to cover when people are on holiday. Out of 10 volunteering slots, six are covered by a Linda/Lynda. However, we would like to assure everyone that we are happy for people with different names to come forward and help. We would also welcome anybody interested in becoming one of our charity trustees: anyone with skills in finance, buildings, marketing and HR would be more than appreciated”.

Why not take a trip down Allhallowgate and find out what is going on – you could also pay a visit to the excellent Workhouse Museum next door too!

You can also call Reception on 01765 603631 or email: reception@riponcommunityhouse.co.uk for more information.