GroupsImpactNewsOCFThe Valentine Club community group

Oxfordshire Community Foundation (OCF) is delighted to have awarded grants totalling over £21,000 from the Sir George Earle Benevolent Fund. These grants are enabling local organisations to support older people and reduce loneliness or isolation. 

The Sir George Earle Benevolent Fund was established in 1974 by the late Sir George Earle to support the current and former employees of Blue Circle Industries in the UK. Its aim is to work with local communities and projects which support older people, particularly projects which aim to reduce loneliness or isolation in areas around historic cement works, such as Oxfordshire.

The grants awarded through the Sir George Earle Benevolent Fund are to improve older people’s access to social activity, increase the availability of local activities, respond to local social or economic needs, and overall reduce feelings of loneliness or isolation in older people. The grants in Oxfordshire were awarded to 10 local organisations, for such things as subsidising meals, purchasing new equipment, improving facilities, paying costs to allow clubs to continue or set up community spaces as ‘warm banks’.

One of these organisations, The Valentine Club are using their grant to provide a meal and entertainment for over 100 seniors living in a rurally isolated part of Oxfordshire. In these times of uncertainty and poverty, this gives many seniors something to look forward to and enables them to interact with others of a similar background. They have organised a similar event in previous years, but following the pandemic, they are determined to return to as near normal as possible and provide a lasting memory.

OCF is currently running cost-of-living grants and Help Us Help You grants rounds. Find out more and apply

List of grants made in OCF’s Sir George Earle Benevolent Fund grants round: 
Organisation Project Number Of Beneficiaries Amount Awarded
The Valentine Club Christmas Dinner for Seniors 100 £2,000
Ardley & Fewcott Gardening Club Promoting well being and togetherness. 75 £900
St Mary’s Thursday Club Equipment & Activities 11 £2,000
The Cluster Care Group Cluster Care’s Older Peoples Group 36 £1,425
Daybreak Healthy lunches 75 £2,522
Leys CDI Clockhouse Over 50s Project 110 £3,000
BROMSGROVE DAY CENTRE Hire of Hall 40 £1,400
Cornerstone Christian Centre Automatic Door Opener 150 £3,000
Cholsey Volunteers Trust Cholsey Volunteers Warm Bank 100 £3,000
UCARE (Oxford) Male Carers Support Group 100 £1,834