Coronavirus / COVID - 19 update for the VCSE Organisations 22nd April 2020

Halton and St Helens VCA

If you need a contact for our volunteering portal and volunteering during the Covid-19 response across both Boroughs it’s Claire Redford-Kerr

If you need a contact for the Covid-19 response in St Helens it’s Annie Lawrenson

If you need a contact for the Covid-19 response in Halton it’s Matthew Roberts

You can also contact Sally Yeoman our Chief Officer for issues in both Boroughs. She will also be picking up LCR work with VS6 colleagues

For comms/website and information queries contact  or

Our phones will be temporarily redirected and you will be able to contact us by using our usual numbers 01744 457100 / 01928 592405

To access all resources relating to volunteering, involving volunteers, funding or local/national news click on our homepage

Below is the latest news / updates for VCSE organisations in Halton and St Helens 


St Helens Middle-Aged Men’s Health VCSE Community Of Practice (CHAMPS Public Health Collaborative).

Community of Practice Programme – Funding 

As part of the Champs Public Health Collaborative, St Helens Council have secured funding to further develop and enhance the community-led suicide prevention offer in the Borough. St Helens recently launched the OK2ASK campaign, enabling people with lived experience to champion mental health, to organise and deliver local anti-stigma and discrimination activities, give access to free training and free campaign resources. We know we are in unusual times but we think extra resources to support and improve mental health is going to be critical now more than ever. We would encourage groups to apply and to think about how they can offer their support during the Covid-19 crisis.

The funding will enable Voluntary, Community & Social Enterprise groups to develop and deliver a range of men’s projects in line with the Edge Hill University Evidence Review. Halton & St Helens VCA will run a small grants programme and establish a Community of Practice that is linked to the Community Led Suicide Prevention Group and will bring funded organisations together to share best practice and to look at ways in which we can work together to make a real difference in our communities. Groups who are applying for funding must be willing to commit to working as part of the Community of Practice.

For an application form contact applications must be submitted by 18 May 2020.  Click here for more detail



As part of the government’s commitment to provide support to businesses and employers during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, HMRC have been offering live webinars on the Job Retention Scheme. LIve webinars provides an overview of the support available to help employers and their employees deal with the economic impacts of COVID-19.  Places are extremely limited but If you’ve missed any of the recent webinars, or have been unable to join, you can now view a recording on HMRC’s YouTube channel.

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Job Retention Scheme - During this webinar they will be taking a look at:
•    furloughed workers
•    who can apply for the scheme
•    following the rules of the scheme
•    how much may be claimed
•    how to claim and what you’ll need to claim.


Coronavirus Mental Health Response Fund

Voluntary and community sector (VCS) organisations have a vital role working alongside NHS colleagues to support anyone who has a mental health problem.  Due to the coronavirus pandemic, demand for mental health services is increasing.  To help VCS organisations based in England continue to provide mental health services - or provide additional support - organisations can apply for a Coronavirus Mental Health Response Fund (CMHRF) grant. Thanks to £5m support from government (the Department of Health and Social Care), grants of £20,000 or £50,000 are available for projects lasting up to 12 months.You can find out more about the fund and how to apply on both the Association of Mental Health Providers website and the Mind’s website
Support for smaller organisations or groups

As part of this funding programme, the National Survivor User Network (NSUN) will be administering a fund to support user-led organisations and smaller, constituted community organisations, who might not otherwise be eligible for a grant. Details are available on the NSUN website.


Dedicated phone service for customers aged 70 or over.

Thanks to our colleagues at Age UK who have lobbied the banks successfully for dedicated direct phone numbers for over 70s and for sharing the details with us.  

  • Bank of Scotland:  0800 0859179.  Lines open from 8am to 6pm, 7 days a week.
  • Halifax: 0800 0859137.  Lines open from 8am to 6pm, 7 days a week.
  • Lloyds Bank:  0800 056 0045.  Lines open from 8am to 6pm, 7 days a week.
  • NatWest:  0800 051 4176.  Lines open from 8am to 6pm, 7 days a week.
  • Royal Bank of Scotland:  0800 051 4177.  Lines open from 8am to 6pm, 7 days a week.


If you have volunteering requirements please register them here 

and also encourage people wanting to help out to do that safely by registering here 


Service Status Updates From Our Member Organisations

We have been sent a number of service status updates from our member organisations to let us know their current working practices during Covid-19.  The link to Halton Organisations is here and the link to St Helens organisations is here. If you have a service update that you would like to tell us about, please email and we will add your organisations details to our lists.


If you'd like to sign up for your own copy of the daily update, please follow the link below and sign up for our ebulletin:

Get In Touch

Halton & St Helens VCA 

Halton Office: 01928 592 405
St Maries
Lugsdale Road

St Helens Office: 01744 457100 
2nd Floor Beacon Building
College Street
St Helens
WA10 1TF



Halton & St Helens VCA is an infrastructure organisation that provides advice, information and development support services to voluntary, community, not-for-profit and faith organisations and volunteers in the Boroughs of St Helens and Halton.