Barnsley Museums at Worsbrough Mill to receive £180,000 in fund to support community volunteering opportunities through UK Government investment

Worsbrough Mill has been awarded £180,000 by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sports, delivered by Arts Council England.

Worsbrough Mill is an incredible place to volunteer with huge potential to support the community further. This fund will be used in collaboration with a range of partners from across Barnsley using partnership between local stakeholders to create new, high quality, volunteer opportunities. The fund will develop skills and address loneliness and isolation, prioritising those most in need who face barriers to participation.

The Volunteering Futures Fund was launched last year and will be distributed by Arts Council England. It will break down barriers to volunteering and enable organisations across the arts, culture, sport, civil society, youth and heritage sectors to continue their valuable work within local communities whilst volunteers enjoy the personal benefits of making a difference. 

Those set to benefit most from the funding include young people and people with disabilities. Colleges, local councils, schools, health and wellbeing organisations are also among the recipients of the Fund.

Arts Council England have awarded these organisations in order to respond to demand from a wide range of beneficiaries, such as from those who may be experiencing loneliness or social isolation, to young people in the LGBTQ community, people with learning difficulties and complex needs. 

A full list of funded projects can be found here.

Culture Secretary Nadine Dorries said: “As we have seen throughout the pandemic, volunteering offers a wealth of benefits to both the volunteers and the organisations who rely on their help, encouraging acts of generosity, public spirit and neighbourliness.

“The Volunteering Futures Fund will deliver a step-change in connecting those who may be isolated, lonely or experiencing any number of potential barriers to get involved in volunteering.

“I’m delighted that more than 160 organisations will now benefit from £4.6 million in Government funding to enhance collaboration between local councils, the public sector, and civil society.”

The £4.6 million UK Government funding is being awarded and distributed via Arts Council England. Grants of £100,000 or more have been awarded following an Arts Council competitive process launched in November 2021. There are 19 lead organisations that will work with more than 160 partner organisations to deliver volunteering opportunities at a local level across England. 

An additional £2.2 million has been distributed by Pears Foundation and NHS Charities Together.

Darren Henley, CEO of Arts Council England said: “There’s an abundance of evidence to show that volunteering can be a key factor in helping people lead happier lives.

“This new investment will enrich villages, towns and cities across England, increasing health and well-being and decreasing loneliness and isolation.”

Kathy McArdle, Service Director Regeneration and Culture, BMBC said: “Volunteering contributes massively to what makes Barnsley a place of opportunity, we are delighted Worsbrough Mill is one of the organisations selected to deliver Volunteering Futures, a fund that will transform the volunteer offer and provide a whole host of new opportunities for our communities.”

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