Column: Working together can connect excellent causes

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Working together.

It seems simple enough but when you are rushing around all day it’s hard to remember sometimes to take the time to make connections.

South Yorkshire’s Community Foundation (SYCF) is a local grant-making charity and with 30 years of grant giving experience, we are quite well known by other charities and community organisations across South Yorkshire.

Particularly by those who we have funded with grant awards, often more than once.

But what surprises me is how often I find that community groups either don’t know about each other or don’t work together.

The organisations we support are often run entirely by volunteers busy delivering their services.

So looking around for other community organisations to link into is probably always going to slide down the list of things to do.

SYCF are in a rare position of having met and helped thousands of groups like these over the years, all over the county.

When I get the chance to go out and meet these groups I usually find myself asking “have you heard of…?” and often the answer is no. Which is a shame, because if more groups worked together then it could lead to great things. The sharing of resources or expertise. A start-up being advised by a long-standing charity that works for the same community needs. Sharing volunteers or venues, the list goes on.

Being able to find and connect with these smaller charitable organisations is not only useful to other community groups but also for those looking for volunteering opportunities. Take for instance our feature on The Ethel Trust, a local South Yorkshire group who are currently looking for some more volunteers to help them run their community barge trips. A unique project and a fantastic charity to volunteer for and there is many groups like them out there, so get looking!

But how do you find these groups? Well, there are more ways than you think. There is the Sheffield Directory as well as directories from your local Voluntary Action and CVS charities, all online in each area of South Yorkshire and beyond. And you can keep reading our features on charity groups and find out how to link up with special, unique projects working in your area or get in touch with us direct. We will always do our best to put you in touch with the groups we work with.

Find out more at South Yorkshire Community Foundation