On our 10th anniversary, Cheshire Community Foundation (CCF) have presented eight prestigious awards to charities and volunteers who have made a huge local impact.
The awards were presented by Lady Redmond MBE, HM Lord Lieutenant of Cheshire, at Cheshire Community Foundation’s President’s Awards at Abbeywood Estate. The event was sponsored by Artorius Wealth Management, and attended by the winning charities as well as the Community Foundation’s trustees, generous donors and supporters. The foundation began grantmaking in 2012 so a decade of reflections and partnerships were celebrated at the event.
Guests heard about the decade of fundraising and grant making by the foundation, for projects which have touched the lives of over 1 in 10 people in Cheshire. They report having already awarded £370,000 in grants this year, bringing their total to over £10 million since the Foundation began.
Zoe Sheppard, CEO of Cheshire Community Foundation said:
“As we celebrate 10 years of our foundation, we also welcome Her Majesty’s new Lord Lieutenant, Lady Redmond MBE, as President of Cheshire Community Foundation. Over the past decade we have seen incredible growth, survived political turmoil and a pandemic, and today we’re stronger than ever.
As the country’s youngest community foundation we had a lot of catching up to do, but Cheshire is a generous place and many of our first donors are still with us today, supporting their community and trusting us to identify the priorities in every locality. Our beautiful county is often misunderstood, it has unique challenges and people facing real hardship. But it’s also a place where kindness blossoms, where thousands of everyday people volunteer their time to help others, and where innovative charities work strategically to tackle the toughest issues. I’m proud of our team and our network, and I’m excited to see what the next decade brings.”
The charity awards were presented to:
- Bare Necessities Toiletry Bank, for their Give A Smile oral hygiene project through food banks in Cheshire East
- AmaSing Arts, inspiring communities through song and arts, Cheshire West
- Warrington Voluntary Action, for their role in creating the Warrington Food Network, Warrington.
The charities have all received grants from Cheshire Community Foundation during the last year and the judging panel were impressed by the enormous impact of their work, changing and indeed saving lives. Bare Necessities shared research on the link between poor oral hygiene and poor mental health, describing to guests how in some families one toothbrush is shared between 4, and people are brushing their teeth with water. AmaSing described one of their proudest moments, when thanks to a CCF grant, over 20,000 children worldwide sang together online, performing ‘Lean on Me’, dedicated to the crisis in Ukraine. Warrington Food Bank has had to increase capacity by 400%, guests were shocked to hear. The Food Network has improved efficiency and communication for providers across the town, shared food, and is working to reduce reliance on emergency food support by introducing social supermarkets providing affordable groceries. This strategic approach was only possible due to CCF’s Food Poverty Appeal, which raised 148k in a matter of weeks.
Ten year partner awards were presented to:
- Just Drop In (Macclesfield)
- CHAPTER Mental Health (Ellesmere Port)
- Warrington Youth Club (Warrington)
in recognition of their transformative work in the voluntary sector, in a decade-long partnership with the Community Foundation.
Chris Purslow, a long term supporter of the community foundation and many other Warrington charities, was invited to take the honorary role of Vice President of CCF. This is in recognition of Chris’s inspiring and passionate commitment to breaking cycles of deprivation in Warrington in his role as Chair of the Warrington Impact Group, which has already given many people with limited opportunities the support they need to create a brighter future for their families.
The assembled guests were moved to a standing ovation when a Community Hero award was dedicated to the memory of Nick ‘Hoppy’ Hopkinson and presented to his wife Lesley Hopkinson. Remembering the former High Sheriff, Lady Redmond said to guests:
“I know if Hoppy was here, he would want to share his thanks for your support, generosity and kindness – however you are supporting us. I think he would have been proud of what has been achieved thanks to his drive, determination and generosity – calling us all to account and take responsibility for helping those people who need our support.”
Kevin Shone of Artorus said: “Artorius are incredibly proud to sponsor the Cheshire Community Foundation’s 10th Anniversary Presidents Awards. The dedication and passion that the Foundation has for the charities they support and for what they deliver to their local communities is inspiring and we are delighted to be able to support them in their fundraising efforts. We are excited to see what our ongoing sponsorship will bring for the Foundation and the local communities.”
High Sheriff of Cheshire, Jeannie France-Hayhurst was in attendance, and announced Cheshire Community Foundation as her nominated charity of choice for her year in office. She is set to host a Platinum Proms event at Chester Cathedral with all proceeds going to the foundation.