Eleven leading voluntary organisations in Northamptonshire have warned that 3,500 people will be left without support and they will face closure when their council funding ends next year.
The warning comes in a letter sent to the County’s Chief Executive in response to the ending of the Social Wellbeing Contract in March 2020. As yet there is no indication of any replacement funding.
Sally Keeble, Labour’s candidate for Northampton North, said: “These are some of the most prominent, effective and respected organisations in the County. The Council must heed their warning and ensure that funding is in place to maintain these essential services.
“There’s a petition on change.org here. I hope people will sign it and also write to their councillors and MPs urging them to intervene to prevent a crisis in care for the most vulnerable.”
The letter to the Council was signed by Northamptonshire Age UK, The Autumn Centre, Catch 22, Dostiyo, Glamis Hall, Marlow House, Mayday Trust, Midland Heart, Naash, Serve and ACA. It sets out the achievements of the contract, which has already suffered a cut from £2.6 million in 2016 to £1.6 million in 2018.
It says that the voluntary organisations used the public health grant from the County Council to provide services that:
- Prevented people from becoming homeless
- Protected people at risk of falling and enabled them to remain in their own homes.
- Facilitated 1846 days of volunteering – providing a saving of nearly half a million pounds to the public purse.
It also warned that the loss of the grant would force half the organisations to close.
“The impact of our closures will have a devastating effect on public services in the County. We are particularly concerned for those who will not find the support they need,” the letter warns.