Charitable funders have teamed up to ensure that charities working to support vulnerable islanders throughout the health crisis get the resources they need as quickly as possible.
Jersey Funders have all agreed to simplify their application procedures and accelerate their decision-making to ensure funds reach charities when they need them.
Some have also agreed to increase the level of funding available.
The group, which includes nine funders, including the Greville Bathe Fund, the One Foundation and the Association of Jersey Charities, has convened under the chairmanship of the Lloyds Bank Foundation.
They said they will be sharing information about funding requests and the needs identified in them, and working closely with each other and the government “to make sure that nobody falls into a gap and that funding is not wasted on duplication".
Pictured: The nine participating funders have convened under the chairmanship of the Lloyds Bank Foundation.
Charities will be able to apply for funding through a single application form that will reach all participating funders.
“Funders will maintain their own specific rules and priorities, but as a whole will look to support work which reduces or mitigates the impact of the coronavirus – and allows essential services to be provided - for those most in need,” the group said.
Jersey Funders said they would not be funding salaries and overheads of charities which are not able to deliver activities, and recommended that those in that position apply to the Government scheme to assist business.
Some of the participating funders will also accept donations to allow those who wish to contribute anonymously to the general response to do so.
Pictured: Malcolm Ferey described Jersey Funders as “a central point for charities that need financial assistance".
Malcom Ferey, who has been seconded from Citizens Advice Jersey to support the Connect Me programme, described Jersey Funders as “a central point for charities that need financial assistance during this difficult time” during a press conference yesterday.
“That will be one central point with a very short form to obviously make sure that the money is for covid-19 response but that money will flow to charities,” he added.
Mr Ferey reminded charities who are struggling from a resource point of view that there are plenty of volunteers on volunteer.je, who can match the offer against the charity’s needs.
With over 2,800 people and more than 170 businesses having offered their time and support so far, Mr Ferey said the offer was “far in excess of the need”. However, he noted that, as the situation unfolds, it was expected the dynamic would change.
He said the aim was to therefore “channel the volunteer effort and... make sure it carries on through the period of the pandemic”.
“We are acutely aware that we need to do this in a safe and sustainable way as completely as possible,” he explained.
“We are aware that some of those volunteers, as this disease moves through the community, will become unwell themselves and, as willing as they are, they will be unable to go out into the community and that is right and proper. If thousands of people give a little bit that will sustain us through the period.
“Where I am right now, lots of people are doing lots of things and I keep telling them, ‘This is the long haul, we need to sustain this,’ and lots of people are saying to me, ‘I have registered, what do you want me to do?’ I say, ‘Hold hard, we will get to you when you are most needed. Your energy, your resource will be needed as this unfolds.’”
Mr Ferey said that the demand on Connect Me peaked last week, but that things then got quieter over the weekend.
Video: Mr Ferey answered questions from the media about Connect.me with the Social Security Minister, Deputy Judy Martin, and St. Helier Constable, Simon Crowcroft.
In total, 160 islanders used the service last week, in addition to those who received support through their parishes and other social networks. While Mr Ferey said this would increase, he said resources were there to help fulfil the demand.
“We do have that volunteer army, which is ready to be unleashed, in a nice, controlled, safe and sustainable way and we will move forward together through this situation.”
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