The Mersey Gateway Project

Mersey Gateway Time Bank to return to boost Halton communities in 2019

January 4, 2019MerseylinkNews

Mersey Gateway Time Bank to return to boost Halton communities in 2019

An innovative community support scheme developed as part of the Mersey Gateway Project is coming back to boost community organisations in Halton in 2019.

The Mersey Gateway Time Bank scheme, which provides help and support for groups, charities and organisations in Halton, will re-open applications for support on Monday 7 January 2019.

Local groups and charities will be able to submit applications by emailing info@merseylink.com until Friday 29 March 2019.

Time Bank is a way for the operations and maintenance team at Merseylink and the tolling administrator merseyflow to demonstrate their commitment to the local area and provide practical help and support to schools, colleges, charities, and community groups.

It offers an innovative way of matching the skills of the Merseylink and merseyflow teams with local needs to provide long-lasting benefits to community life in Halton.

Since the scheme was launched in May 2014 the Time Bank has already gifted over 20,000 hours of support with £121,000 worth of community benefits delivered locally across 18 projects in Runcorn and Widnes.

Care homes, village halls, play schools and community facilities are just some of the organisations that have benefited from previous rounds of Time Bank activity.

 

Some of the organisations which have benefited from the £121,000 of support given by the Time Bank  

 

Brunswick House, which provides supported accommodation for older people, have benefited from Time Bank and are enjoying their new look garden.

One of those to benefit is Brunswick House, which provides supported accommodation for older people, can enjoy their new look garden.

Merseylink provided a landscape architect to design the outdoor space, and four general construction apprentices helped to physically create the garden.

Secretary Ann Burns said: “Since we approached Mersey Gateway Time Bank our project went from strength to strength. If we had to pay for the work ourselves it would have taken all of the funding we had raised and more. Our new garden is beyond our wildest dreams. We really cannot thank Mersey Gateway Time Bank enough for helping us to complete our project.”

How it works

Time Bank offers a framework of activities supported by a commitment of time and resources from Merseylink and merseyflow. It uses ‘deposits’ of time from experienced teams – time which can then be used to give real practical support to organisations and individuals who need it.

A minimum of 30 days per year are committed through the Time Bank, and assistance can include anything from regeneration activities, career advice, technical advice, general maintenance, painting and litter picking to community and charity support.

Individuals from Merseylink and merseyflow have also expressed an interest in offering more personal commitments such as mentoring, coaching, and presentation skills aimed at young people or the unemployed to increase their chances of securing sustainable employment.

Community groups, local charities and organisations who are interested in applying for support from the Time Bank are advised to get their applications in soon.

Anyone interested in applying can email info@merseylink.com to apply or to find out more.

Rob Polhill, leader of Halton Borough Council, said: “It’s great to have the Time Bank initiative back again. Mersey Gateway is all about the long-term future of Halton and I know that local communities across Runcorn and Widnes have really benefitted from Time Bank support over the past four years, so it’s great that can continue in the future.”

Karen Atherton, Merseylink’s Network Steward, said: “Time Bank is designed to provide long-term benefits to the people of Halton and we’ve been able to support some fantastic projects so far. Once again we want to hear from local community organisations that need our help, so please do get in touch.”

Mia Barnby, HR Officer with merseyflow, said: “A lot of people at merseyflow are really looking forward to being part of the Time Bank team. We’ve done a lot of work in mentoring, coaching and helping people into employment so we think we can bring that experience and expertise to give groups and organisations throughout Halton a helping hand as part of this scheme.”

Workers from Merseylink gave a special makeover to Holy Spirit pre-school, in Runcorn.

Halton Borough Council Mersey Link

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