Community Fair at Foleshill Launches UKSPF Activities

Foleshill Community Centre sees the launch of the first of six UK Shared Prosperity Fund Community Fairs - read our story and view the photos

 A snapshot view of the day - pictured above, representatives from Feeding Coventry, Violet Project, Impact Steel Band, St Francis Employability and Hope in Unity showcasing their work at the UKSPF Foleshill Community Fair.

It might have been a foggy start to the day, but the weather didn’t put people off. Foleshill Community Centre was buzzing with activity for the first of our UK Shared Prosperity Fund Community Fairs on 28 February 2024.  There was a terrific turn out from local residents, plus 15 voluntary organisations from across the city who had organised free activities to showcase the work and services they provide to inspire people to get involved in their local area.

Across two floors, visitors to the fair could visit various stalls, find out more about community provision and volunteering in Coventry. Feeding Coventry (based at Foleshill Community Centre) were cooking up a storm, with huge smiles and big tureens of tasty soup served, free of charge, all day. There was a festival feel, with live performances of dance from Sahil Project and steel pan demonstrations with Impact Steel Band. From gardening, reception duties, stewarding at events to cooking and befriending there’s a huge range of voluntary roles available.

Hope in Unity supports Black elders who are socially isolated. Keenly aware that ever increasing cost of living crisis which is affecting our elders in their day to living, Hope in Unity were giving away energy efficient LED plug in heating devices and radiator reflectors, as well as talking about the volunteer roles available.

Violet Project encouraged participants to make a ‘self-care jar’ to take away, filled with ideas to promote good mental health – Violet Project is a suicide prevention and bereavement organisation which aims to create a sense of community, where individuals can feel comfortable seeking help and finding support.

Visitors got green-fingered with Team Springboard CIC, a community gardening organisation. They sowed seeds in portable trays to take home and brighten up an empty patch of green space and found out more about how Team Springboard’s community allotment harvest is donated to people in need, and the value of gardening for wellbeing.

Coventry City Council awarded Voluntary Action Coventry £229k to deliver activities which improve pride in place and increase life chances. The funding is from the UK Government’s Shared Prosperity Fund (UKSPF) which has been allocated to the city through the West Midlands Combined Authority. Through the funding, at a series of Community Fairs, Voluntary Action Coventry is uniting causes across the city to showcase their work and services and to promote high-quality volunteering opportunities for Coventry people. The fund aims to reach those that face barriers daily, offering specialist support to access volunteering and training opportunities. One of the key projects associated with this is Improving Lives.

Improving LivesGet into Volunteering

The Improving Lives course consists of 12 structured sessions of engaging activities, discussions, visits and support that take place on Tuesdays and Thursdays, 10.30am to 12.30pm for six weeks. Additionally, participants can have access to one-to-one support and guidance to help them with volunteering or employment barriers and free bus tickets are included. If this sounds of interest or you know someone who could benefit, head to the dedicated webpage here to find out how to enrol. The next three courses start 16 April, 11 June and 6 August 2024 with more scheduled for the rest of the year.

Community Fairs:

Look out for announcements on social media:

Community Fairs this Spring: 

Tues 12 March, 11am – 2.30pm : Canley Community Centre, Prior Deram Walk, Canley, Coventry, England, CV4 8FT

Tues 26 March, 11am -2.30pm: Priory Visitor Centre, 6 Priory Row, Coventry, England, CV1 5EX

Tues 16 April, 11am -2.30pm St Philip's Church, 25 Ringwood Highway, Coventry CV2 2GG

Wed 8 May, 12pm – 2.30pm: Jubilee Crescent Community Centre, Jubilee Crescent, Radford, Coventry CV6 3EX

Thurs 23 May, 11am – 2.30pm: WATCH Community Centre, 12 Victoria Street, Hillfields, Coventry, CV1 5LZ

About The UK Shared Prosperity Fund

The UK Shared Prosperity Fund is a central pillar of the UK government’s Levelling Up agenda and provides £2.6 billion of funding for local investment by March 2025. The Fund aims to improve pride in place and increase life chances across the UK investing in communities and place, supporting local business, and people and skills.