MVSC eBulletin 3rd December 2018

This Fortnight's News - 3rd December 2018


Merton Giving Up and Running!

Merton Giving shines a light on the issues in our borough, like poverty, exclusion, loneliness and mental ill-health.  It:

  • Fundraises to create the Merton Giving fund
  • Uses this to supports charities that tirelessly tackle these issues
  • Recruits volunteers and others who devote time and resources.

Merton Giving is part of the dynamic London’s Giving network.  London’s Giving schemes are breaking new ground for communities solving issues such as poverty, exclusion, loneliness, mental health and unemployment from the grassroots.

Merton's Giving is managed by MVSC, with Merton Chamber of Commerce a key partner.

Merton CIL Craftism and Chat

Merton CIL is running a Craftivism and Chat meeting from 1pm to 4 pm on Thursday 6th December 2018 at the Wandle Valley Resource Centre, Church Road, Mitcham, CR4 3BE.  Refreshments will be provided.

This meeting will be a complaints workshop - equipping people with the skills to successfully challenge discrimination.  This will be followed by a Christmas wreath-making session run by a Merton CIL Member.


Launch of Civil Society Futures Report

The Civil Society Futures report was launched on 19th November 2018.  It is the result of a two-year inquiry into the future of the VCSE sector and what the sector needs to do to change and adapt to economic and social changes over the next decade and beyond.

It calls on individuals, charities and organisations in civil society to commit to a new ‘PACT’:

  • Power: shifting power and sharing more decision-making and control, being a model of inclusive participation for the rest of society
  • Accountability: being primarily accountable to the people they serve – instead of putting funders and government first – and being accountable to future generations
  • Connection: broadening and deepening connections with people and communities, bridging damaging social divides, and investing in a new ‘social infrastructure’.
  • Trust: devoting more time and resources to build trust in all civil society activity, earning trust by speaking up to politicians and corporations, trusting communities to make the decisions that affect them.

Home-Start Toy Appeal for Christmas

Sainsbury’s and Argos North Cheam have partnered with Home-Start Merton in their Toy Appeal.

From 30th November 2018, people can buy a new toy and donate it in the large collection bin located in Argos at the Sainsbury’s store.

Home-Start Merton will then provide the toys to parents who they support for them to give their children as Christmas presents from mum and dad. 

Many families are struggling financially and this will help them to not spend money they haven’t got in the household budget, while ensuring their children get presents for Christmas.  Parents are then able to buy food, pay their rent and utilities and not have debt.

Please help by buying a new toy and placing it in the collection bin in Argos at Sainsbury’s in North Cheam.  The gifts do not need to be wrapped.

New Commonweal Housing Fund

Independent action learning charity Commonweal Housing have just launched their Housing Helps new ideas competition.  This will award £10,000 for research or a feasibility study into a social injustice where housing could be part of a solution.

Existing projects span numerous issues from migrants with no recourse to public funds to young carers.  Commonweal have also recently funded research into shared new-build designs and housing options for wheelchair users.  So there are few real limitations in terms of policy area or interest.  Commonweal are, however, keen to hear about new, emerging or overlooked issues and injustices where housing might help.

The deadline for entries is mid-day on 31st January 2019.

Free Online Therapy for Merton Residents

Big White Wall is an award-winning online therapy service that’s now available free for Merton residents.  The service has been commissioned by Merton NHS Clinical Commissioning Group to enhance the support available across the borough for residents aged 18 and more.  Merton residents can access Big White Wall online therapy online

The service offers:

  • Sessions seven days a week
  • Availability 7am – 11pm everyday
  • Choice of therapists
  • Sessions via typing, audio only and secure webcam
  • Flexibility and choice to suit busy lifestyles
  • Fast access to therapy – no waiting lists!

If you have any questions, or would like to help promote Big White Wall in Merton, please get in touch with

Water Workouts for Over 55s

Merton Age UK are launching a brand new Water Workout class for over 55s.

The classes will be held at the new Morden Pool (London Road, Mitcham, SM4 5HE) from 12.00 to 12.45pm (arrive for 11.30am) on Tuesdays.

The classes are run by an expert tutor and can help keep you fit and healthy, ease aching joints and boost your mood and energy levels. As well as being a lot of fun!

The normal cost of a class is £4, but the first four classes are absolutely free.  The dates of the first four classes are 4th, 11th, 18th December and 8th January.

If you would like to join the class or have any questions, please give Age UK a call on 020 8648 5792.

Muslim Women of Merton

Muslim Women of Merton (MWM) works for a cohesive equitable society that empowers women to have a compelling voice contributing to positive outcomes for all.

In recognition of its work, on 27th November 2018, MWM won a prestigious award from the Faith and Belief Forum   The Forum invites organisations across the UK to help them create understanding between people of different faiths and beliefs and bring our communities closer together. 

Congratulations to MWM.  Their award was ‘for services to and for faith and belief communities in Greater London’.

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