Funding success to continue support for the voluntary sector through the COVID-19 crisis.

The beecan website
Voluntary sector support website,

East Riding Voluntary Action Services (ERVAS) and The HEY Smile Foundation (Smile) are pleased to announce we they been successful with a partnership bid to The National Lottery Community Fund.

The funding will enhance the services already provided to a wide range of support services for charities within the East Riding throughout the COVID19 Crisis and following investment from The National Lottery Community Fund, they will be able to increase capacity and expand their work for a further six months. 

Nationally, the Voluntary Sector has played an important role in the community’s resilience throughout the pandemic, with a huge response from new mutual aid groups to existing charitable organisations providing thousands of hours of volunteering, and core paid-for roles, that have aided food, medicines and home from hospital provision.

In the East Riding, that support has received a huge boost with investment in the area from the National Lottery Community Fund. Alongside a wide range of projects receiving investment across areas including Goole, Bridlington, Beverley and Hornsea the work of infrastructure support, training and guidance has also been recognised as paramount in the recovery phase of our communities.  

A combination of ERVAS, Smile and leaders across the voluntary and community network will be further investing their vast amount of experience in the recovery of groups, supporting on a 1:1 basis, as well as bringing in specific targeted skills to aid the recovery of the voluntary sector, and that of the communities they serve.

Many charities and their workforce (including volunteers and paid staff) have diverted resources to support those most in need throughout the COVID -19 crisis. This has seen resources and energy within the sector stretched, increased demand on statutory services only leads to further strain at a community level and for those delivering community-based provision, such as youth support or meals on wheels.

The funding secured by the partnership between Smile and ERVAS, will see further support to enable charities to re-open safely, to provide additional capacity for business planning and funding support, whilst also having funds available to bring in specialist skills from the private sector when required.

Sian Broughton CEO of ERVAS said: “We are extremely pleased to receive the partnership funding from The National Lottery Community Fund.  The work carried out during the COVID19 pandemic has shown how resilient and transformational the Voluntary and Community Sector can be during a crisis, this funding will ensure that organisations receive the support that they need during these difficult times so that they can continue supporting their communities.”

The investment in the partnership of £84,703 is matched with funding and support from local grantmakers, continued investment in the voluntary sector development from East Riding of Yorkshire Council, and the range of funding that has been made available by local grant makers and central government. 

Andrew Barber CEO of Smile said: “The Lottery plays a significant role in stimulating investment into communities and during the COVID Crisis this has again been hugely welcomed.  The teams at both Smile and ERVAS have been working tirelessly with groups above and beyond our core work and services, to ensure our community leaders have the resources and support to thrive not just survive going forward.

“Smile and ERVAS have provided a wide range of funded and unfunded services for many years in the region that have helped to develop and support communities across the East Riding. In the COVID-19 Crisis, our skill set was maximised to ensure the voluntary sector not only played a huge part in supporting communities but enabled them to connect and support one another, equally we provided connectivity across the East Riding sharing best practice, confidence and streamlined access to support, removing barriers to enable communities and the charities that serve them to do what only they can do.”

Charitable organisations can request additional support by contacting either of the partners direct or registering on

Initial registration is simple and support and guidance are available through both Smile and ERVAS to register.  Requests for support are then triaged to the specific skills required across the partnership ensuring the voluntary sector gains enhanced support for the next six months.

[Sarah Shepherdson – Smile Foundation]