The Dorset patient champion has £10,000 to offer to local community groups to help people across the county have their say and get the best out of health and social care services.

Healthwatch Dorset have launched their Community Investment Fund, to invest in grassroots projects and groups that aim to improve the health and wellbeing of local people.

“There is no need for the group to be a registered charity or an official group and applying is easy”, said Healthwatch Dorset Engagement and Communications Lead, Louise Bate. “We want this money to make a difference to local people, so we’ll be judging applications on how well we think they could contribute to improving people’s health and wellbeing.”

Interested groups or individuals just need to send in a short description of their project idea and the amount of funding they’re asking for to [email protected] or call 0300 111 0102.

Louise explained that the projects do not have to be expensive or complicated: “It could just be enough to cover the cost of materials so that a group can produce some artwork representing their experiences of health or care services, or the cost of setting up an event or regular group so people can meet or take an exercise class.”

Last year Healthwatch Dorset supported 13 projects across the county, including setting up a new social group for young adults with a visual impairment in Bridport called SocialEyes, supporting Dance Classes for people living with Parkinson’s Disease, and setting up a Radio Club in a school for children with profound learning disabilities.

Healthwatch Dorset are looking for people with creative ideas to come forward and use this £10,000 funding pot for the benefit of local people. To find out more, visit, email [email protected] or call Louise on 0300 111 0102. The deadline for applications is 5pm Friday 9th March and funding will be distributed at the end of March 2018.

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