NWCN Ebulletin 20 January 2021

1 VCSE Covid Recovery Fund - Call for Applications

On behalf of the Department for Communities (DfC), Co-operation Ireland in partnership with Rural Community Network announces the re-opening of the VCSE Covid Recovery Fund.

Following the closure of the first phase of the Fund in December 2020, a review has identified that funds remain available that would allow for the purchase of PPE and other sundry items to enable the re-opening and/ or continued delivery of vital community services. With potential for future PPE funding opportunities limited, this provides an opportunity for the Sector to make new or additional applications to help organisations plan ahead and ensure their premises are ready to deliver services as soon as Covid restrictions are relaxed.

This phase of the Fund, which opens for applications at 10.00 am on Monday 18 January 2021, is to ensure that VCSE organisations have the sufficient PPE required to continue service delivery. Groups can apply for awards up to £5,000 for purchase of PPE. Organisations who were previously successful in applying to this element of the fund can reapply to receive up to £5,000 (e.g. if an organisation was awarded £2,000 from the 1st phase of applications, they can apply for a further £3,000).

The Key Features of the Fund are:

  • Grants of up to £5,000 are available to voluntary, community or social economy organisations
  • Open for applications between 18th January – 29th January 2021 (4.00 p.m.)
  • Applications must be submitted using the online application process
  • Funding must be spent by 31 March 2021

The Fund will be open to applications from Monday 18th January (10.00 a.m.)  to Friday 29th January 2021 (4.00 p.m.)

To make an application to the VCSE Covid Recovery Fund or for further information on what support is available, please click the following link:



2 Ashden Awards 2021

The Ashden Awards boost outstanding climate solutions. For more than 20 years our awards have backed radical ideas delivering lower emissions and a fairer world, with grants and development support on offer to winners and finalists.

Now, in a pivotal year for the future of our planet, we want to hear about your bold and brilliant work. Entry to the awards is free, and applications close on Wednesday 3 March. Winners receive a prize of up to £20,000 and a package of support.

This year’s award categories include greener communities, energy access, green skills, natural climate solutions, sustainable cooling and more. Some categories focus on the UK, and others cover work in low- and middle-income countries. Businesses, public bodies and charities can all apply.

Apply now


 PILOT to loan tablets (& provide monthly data allowance) and training to adults

The Department of Finance are running a small pilot for getting tablets to adults who are vulnerable and isolated. It includes loan of a 10’ tablet and free monthly data allowance as well as focused training from Libraries and Supporting Communities over a period of six months or so.  It will run in two ‘phases’ with initial roll-out to approx. 70 recipients in February followed by another 70 or so in March. It is aimed at vulnerable and isolated adults who have never used a device before and don’t have the internet. (it is not aimed at children/ young people) It may be of special interest to people in rural communities.
The pilot is due to start next month, so if you do know anyone who might be eligible to apply, please contact Colin directly at 
Please note this small pilot does not have translation services.


4 Law Centre NI Free Outreach Clinics

I wanted to let you know about an exciting development from Law Centre NI with support from the Dept for Communities. We will be offering: FREE Outreach Clinics

Suitable for community or interest groups, who work with people engaging with the benefit system: These clinics will provide an introduction to social security benefits and the services the Law Centre NI can offer and can be tailored to the needs of your organisations or groups. It will enable their members, staff or volunteers to ask questions and find out where and how to access appropriate support.

What do you need to do?

We’d be very grateful if you could get in touch with the community groups you work with, let them know about the clinics and get a group of interested organisations/individuals together. We’ll work with you to arrange a date and time that works for everyone, then send through a link to access the session.

If you have any further questions please don’t hesitate to contact me.

To express your interest in a session or find out more please contact me at louisa.mckee@lawcentreni.org


5 Bill of Rights Survey

Human rights are freedoms and protections belonging to everyone. A bill of rights contains human rights protections for everyone – it is a list of the laws a country agrees to make to protect all the people who live there. It can also contain guiding principles or ideas.  To get an understanding of what people who live here think about the creation of a Bill of Rights for Northern Ireland, the Ad Hoc Committee on a Bill of Rights needs to hear from lots of different people.
A short (& confidential) survey for ALL ages has been created to gather those thoughts.  It can be completed on-line at 
http://nia1.me/4dm where you can also find further information.  Alternately you can go to www.niassembly.gov.uk and click on the Bill of Rights link under “Latest News”. 
The survey should be completed on-line by 28th January 2021

6 The Big Gathering

The Covid-19 pandemic is in another serious phase with further restrictions in place. Vaccines are rolling out but there is still a long way to go to reach a better place.  Arts, heritage and cultural organisations are closed. Creative individuals and organisations are trying to adapt in an almost impossible time of changing circumstances and many challenges. 
To discuss this and possible ways to survive and recover, the Arts Collaboration Network is holding a second Big Gathering on Thursday 21 Jan at 2pm.   If you’d like to be part of these conversations please register here for The Big Gathering.
Register for the Big Gathering: 


 7 ASCERT Women and Alcohol Seminar

In the first of our 2021 Seminar Series, we will consider how the experience of alcohol is different for women, including alcohol related harm, targeting by the alcohol industry, societal attitudes towards women’s drinking and barriers to support and recovery.

16th February 2021, 2pm - 4.30pm, online webinar

We are delighted to be joined by the following  guest speakers:
Professor Carol Emslie leads the Substance Use & Misuse research group within the School of Health & Life Sciences at Glasgow Caledonian University (GCU). She is a leading researcher focusing on gender and alcohol.

Ann Dowsett Johnston is an award-winning journalist and keynote speaker. She is one of Canada’s leading experts on public policy related to higher education, alcohol addiction and trauma and author of the best selling book Drink: The Intimate Relationship Between Women and Alcohol.

Clare Flynn has worked in roles related to emotional wellbeing, suicide prevention and health promotion. She will share perspectives from her personal experience of parental alcohol use, her own problems with alcohol and her recovery journey.

Register for this free online event via Eventbrite https://www.eventbrite.com/e/women-and-alcohol-tickets-136584735621


8 RNID Online Information Talks

We have a number of online events coming up over the next few months:

Wednesday 27th January 2021, 10am – 12 noon
Via Zoom – communication support can be provided upon request

Hear in the New Year –  
Learn About Support for people who are Deaf, have Tinnitus or hearing loss in Northern Ireland.  We will provide information on how to manage your tinnitus, how to take care of your hearing aids, how to communicate effectively with people who are Deaf or have hearing loss.

Wednesday 3rd  February 2021, 10am – 11am
Via Zoom – communication support can be provided upon request

Overcoming Communication Barriers During Covid 19 –
Covid 19 poses unique challenges for communicating as many of those with hearing loss rely on visual cues such as lip reading and facial expression for communication.

This visual information is lost when someone is on a telephone or wearing a mask.  

In order to adapt to overcome these barriers we may need to adapt to new ways of communicating and using additional resources in order to communicate effectively.

Wednesday 17th February 2021, 1pm – 1.30pm
Via Zoom – communication support can be provided upon request

My Hearing Story-
Our volunteer Steve Davis will be giving a short talk on his own experience growing up with hearing loss, how he managed his hearing loss and how it has been effected due to Covid-19.

Wednesday 3rd March February 2021, 10am – 12 noon
Via Zoom – communication support can be provided upon request

Hearing Health Training -
70% of people aged 70+ are living with some form of hearing loss, this rises to 90% aged 80+.

Lead by our Hearing Aid Liaison Officer, this information session includes:

An introduction to Hearing Loss and its causes,

  • The signs of hearing loss and Hearing Loss Pathway
  • The impact of Hearing Loss (mental health, isolation, loneliness, falls, dementia)
  • Our Tinnitus Support Officer will share about what is Tinnitus and how to learn to live with it. 
  • Our Information Officer will bring you up to date with tips and tactics for overcoming communication barriers during Covid 19.
  • You will also learn about basic hearing aid maintenance to keep hearing aids working their best.

These on-line sessions are open to anyone who would like to join, we will forward you the zoom details after you have registered your interest with us.

If you or your organisation are unavailable on the dates above and you are interested in attending, please contact us to arrange a time and date that suits you better. 

Paula.McAnulty@rnid.org.uk / 028 90239619 or 07587 130 502


9  10 Minute BME Survey

Please see below the link to 2-10 minute survey to enable people from minority ethnic groups to communicate any views they may have about the oncoming vaccination programme for the coronavirus.  

Please note a summary of the survey data will be sent directly to the Public Health Agency, and where possible additional information / support will be provided to local ethnic minority groups as needed. 
Closing date for survey replies is Thursday 21st January 2021.


10 Developing an Age Friendly Strategy for Derry City and Strabane Area
Would you like to get involved in shaping how the Derry City and Strabane district area can become more Age Friendly?  What are the key issues for you, your family and your friends?
It would be great to hear from individuals and groups that would like to get involved to help shape our age friendly project to find out what are the key age issues for our older residents in Derry City and Strabane.
Why not join in, meet new friends, take part and engage in activities that inform the development of an Age Friendly Strategy and ensure that the future age friendly actions are those decided by our older people.
For more information or to join our Age Friendly Community Email: 


11 RSE and Online Training

Common Youth are currently delivering free RSE sessions for young people online, we also have interactive activities that can be completed by young people independently and we have a series of factsheets on our website (www.commonyouth.com) that can be accessed by both young people and professionals.
RSE information leaflet

Additionally, our sexual health clinic has remained open and busy throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. In light of this, we are delivering online training for professionals around how to talk to young people about sexual health related issues on 4th February
Further information


12 Youth Programme launch: call for participants

Void Gallery is delighted to be working in partnership with intern and artist facilitator, Zoe McSparron, in the creation of our new Youth Programme.
This programme is aimed at persons aged 14-20 and will create an encouraging and creative space where participants will explore their personal and collective creativity. While developing their individual creativity, members will also engage in innovative research, experimentation, and create work in response to our ambitious exhibitions programme.
The emphasis on this youth group will not only be about enjoying art; it will also be about gaining experience on a professional level. Participants will have the opportunity to programme talks, podcasts, and lectures, which will be presented online or in the gallery (pending COVID-19 restrictions), write exhibition texts and press releases, set up Instagram takeovers, collaborate and work alongside professional creatives.
We want this to be a group created by you, for you, so if you are interested in the creative arts and are aged 14-20 we would be grateful if you could complete an expression of interest survey that you can find on our website at 
www.derryvoid.com or visit https://docs.google.com/forms/d/1SEabZjuZPIzo1-iv0M_eEkkz91seBWVAjN0zYlgNYp0/edit.
If you have a son or daughter who may be interested, please do share it with them. You can also have the survey sent directly to you by emailing marketing@derryvoid.com.
When you complete the survey and submit your contact details you will be automatically entered into a competition to be in with the chance of winning a £40 BradburyART art voucher.


13 Latest Offer from Salto Youth

FLOW: Facilitating, Learning, Organising and Welcoming! A critical Training of Trainers
6 - 27 March 2021 | Online, Belgium - FL
In this online Training of Trainers, we discuss the most important skills, methods, and approaches to get in a good flow while initiating, organising and managing educational projects. How can we include values into our work as trainers?
Organizer: Service Civil International (Others)
This activity is for participants from: Erasmus+: Youth in Action Programme countries, Partner Countries Neighbouring the EU
Application deadline (24h CET): 24 January 2021

See details

14 Every Move You Make - available to book online

A dramatic monologue on abusive relationships among young people

by Patricia Byrne, performed by Roma Harvey
Available for schools and youth centres to book online!
Jenni's 16th birthday is coming up, and her new boyfriend Jamie will be there. He is so nice. He is interested in everything she does. He always wants to know where she is and what she is doing. He texts her all the time and follows her every move on Facebook. But things start to take a turn, and Jenni isn't so sure anymore.
The play follows the ups and downs of a young woman's relationship as it goes from being near perfect to becoming an impossible nightmare. The production explores the issue of abusive relationships among young people. It was developed in consultation with Foyle Women’s Aid, NSPCC and Youth Action NI. The performance is followed by a Q+A with representatives of organisations working to stop domestic violence against women and children.
Now available for schools and youth centres across Northern Ireland to book online!
“The Sole Purpose dramatisations are a powerful tool which enables us to address some very sensitive issues within the Preventative Curriculum. I wholeheartedly support the work of Sole Purpose.” Ms S Mallett, Principal, Thornhill College Derry
"This was a very moving piece of theatre. The aim is to disturb and that was achieved fully. None watching this play would ever again be victim to such abuse having witnessed a relay of classic symptoms.”  Imelda Foley, Arts Council of Northern Ireland
Sole Purpose Productions is a multi award winning theatre company that has toured work throughout Ireland, the UK, and the USA. It is core funded by the Arts Council of Northern Ireland. This project is supported by the Community Foundation for Northern Ireland through the Tampon Tax Community Fund.
To book an online performance and Q&A for your school or youth centre please contact Patricia Byrne at 
solepurpose@mac.com or phone 028 7127 9918.


15 MellowDEEDS- New Choir Leader Needed

Mellow Deeds is an integrated choir made up of those living with dementia and their carers, volunteers and Deeds staff based in the Old Library Trust in Creggan. The emphasis is on enjoying music, making friendships and participating in music in the wider community.

We aim to work towards two to three annual performances such as: Deeds Events/Seasonal Events e.g. Christmas/Community Events like the Every Voice Festival/Intergenerational Events with Schools and also any other opportunities that arise. We are looking for a choir leader, preferably with experience of both leading a choir but also working with dementia either on a voluntary or paid basis.

The new choir leader would be asked to lead live sessions weekly on Facebook during Covid restrictions but then face to face thereafter based here in the Old Library Trust. This would be paid on a sessional basis.

For more information and to obtain an expression of interest form please contact Sinead on 028 71 373870 or email 

16 DHC seeks Voluntary Board Members

We’re looking for enthusiastic individuals with a broad spectrum of knowledge, skills and experience to join the Developing Healthy Communities’ Board during a time of diversification.

We welcome applications that reflect the diversity of modern society and the communities that we serve. Click below to find out more about the role 

Find out more...

For more information and to apply you can download the Board Recruitment Pack. The deadline for completed applications is Friday 5th February 2021.

If you would like an informal discussion about the role, you should email our Chief Executive on erin@dhcni.com

Download Board Recruitment & Application Pack

17 Public appointments opportunity - Northern Regional College (NRC) Chair Competition

Appointment of a Chair to the Governing Body of the Northern Regional College (NRC) With Remuneration of £20,000 Per Annum.


DfE will be launching an open competition to recruit a Chair to the Governing Body of Northern Regional College (NRC) on 14 January 2021. The process will involve an application form and an interview. Appointments will be made on merit and applications are welcome from all sections of society.

The successful candidate will take up their appointment in July 2021 and the time commitment will be approximately one day a week of college business.

For more information or to request an information pack and application form please contact DfE Public Appointments Unit:
Telephone: 028 9052 9461 or Email: pau@economy-ni.gov.uk

You can download the application form and information pack from our website:-

Department for the Economy public appointments | Department for the Economy (economy-ni.gov.uk)

Late applications will not be accepted.

DfE would particularly welcome applications from people with a disability, those from ethnic minorities and young people as they are all currently under-represented on the NRC Governing Body. A Guaranteed Interview Scheme (GIS), for applicants with a disability, will operate for this competition.

Female Chairs are currently under-represented across all bodies sponsored by DfE and applications from females would also be particularly welcome.

Equality of Opportunity: The Department is committed to the principles of public appointments based on merit with independent assessment, openness and transparency of process. The Department is also committed to equality of opportunity and welcomes application forms from all suitably qualified applicants irrespective of religious belief, gender, race, political opinion, age, disability, marital status, sexual orientation, or whether or not they have dependants.

18 Free Creative Writing Course

Have you always wanted to write but didn't know where to start?
FWIN are offering a Free 6 week online Creative Writing Class.

Places are limited.  To register your interest please email 


Ready for a change in the New Year?

Sign up for a new FREE RESILIENCE BUILDING Workshop.
Delivered via Zoom

Advice on redundancy, benefits an debt management
Monday 25th January, 2-3pm

Tuesday 26th January, 2-3pm

Wednesday 27th January, 2-3pm

Understanding and living with Bereavement
Thursday 28th January, 2-4pm

Seasonal Affective Disorder
Friday 29th January, 2-3pm

For further information or to book a place go online to 

20 Relaxation Sessions: Feel Good February 2021

2020 has brought many challenges, one of which is finding the balance between working from home and the transition into relaxation within the same space. With that in mind we thought as part of #DryJanuaryFeelGoodFeb that it was important to explore other ways of managing stress.

As it is only a short workshop lasting 30-45 minutes then you can use it as a way to unwind after a day of work on the 2nd February or during your lunchbreak on 22nd Feb, in fact why not try both!

These short workshops will help support your self- care tools in guiding you through a relaxation session where you are sure to feel the benefits of taking the time out.

Wednesday 3rd February, 19:30 - 20:15 GMT
Monday 22nd February, 12:00 - 12:45 GMT

Book Relaxation Session
21 Not the Knitting Police | Arts & Culture News from the North West

 In this latest issue find news and information on:
  • Funding Opportunities
  • Culture News
  • Training News
  • What's On
Not the Knitting Police | Arts & Culture News from the North West (mailchi.mp)
22 Fit February with Autism NI

We’re upping the game!

Join our ‘Fit February’ challenge to kick off 2021 and help raise vital funds for Autism NI. To get involved all you need to do is ‘fit 50k in February’ by walking, running, cycling or climbing… it’s up to you how you do it.

The money raised from this challenge will help us continue to provide vital autism services across Northern Ireland. Due to the ongoing covid-19 pandemic, our fundraising has been heavily impacted but our services have been needed more than ever.

Sign up by emailing 
events@autismni.org and take on this challenge to support our important work.


Social Updates

Change Text Size

Current Size: 100%