A CLAPHAM based charity has successfully helped more than 20 organisations and groups across the Dales continue to provide vital services during the coronavirus pandemic.

Since the start of May, the Yorkshire Dales Millennium Trust has given out almost £40,000 through its coronavirus community fund, to groups making a difference to the health and wellbeing of their communities.

The fund, which is supported by players of People’s Postcode Lottery, is a partnership between Two Ridings Community Foundation and Cumbria Community Foundation.

Its focus is to help people through this unprecedented time to deal with emergency issues as a result of the continuing threat of coronavirus.

Skipton-based children’s charity, Selfa have received two grants from the fund to help support vulnerable children and families in Craven.

One project saw activity packs distributed to young people during the peak of the pandemic, to give them a creative outlet while struck indoors.

The extended learning charity also recently received funding to increase the numbers of children attending their weekly clubs and activities to deal with the immediate aftermath of Covid-19.

Emma Pears, Selfa’s chief officer, said: “We support children and families in Craven who are experiencing vulnerabilities to build resilience, thrive and achieve.

“Over the last year, 435 children and young people accessed one of our activities including wellbeing projects; holiday workshops and trips; and residentials.

“As you can imagine, during the pandemic there was a lot of change for our young people which can be very distressing for the children that we support. Parents and professionals told us that there was a high demand of children wanting and needing to access immediate support.”

Selfa works with disabled, disadvantaged and vulnerable young people, from four to 19 years old.

Ms Pears added: “The grant meant we could continue to support many of the children we were already working with, accept new referrals from professionals working with families and expand the capacity in our out-of-school activities.”

Grants of up to £5,000 remain available to those organisations who are responding to the crisis but helping people stay healthy, safe and connected.

Will Humpington, Climate Change and Environmental Programmes Advisor at People’s Postcode Lottery, added: “The way communities have come together to support the most vulnerable in society through the pandemic has been truly heart-warming.

“Community is a big part of what we do at People’s Postcode Lottery, and players’ support has played an important part in the response through this initiative. It’s great to see how it is making a real difference to people’s lives across the Dales.”

To find out more about applying for a grant contact YDMT on 015242 51002, email info@ydmt.org or head to ydmt.org to download an application form and guidance notes.