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Voluntary Sector Support

It is estimated that nearly 400,000 people undertake some form of charity or voluntary work in Essex, whether it is running the local scout group, helping in the local school or perhaps giving time freely in some form of service, for example as a special constable. It is this wealth of talent, dedication and devotion to our communities, which makes our society today so much richer. The High Sheriff plays an essential role in being able to applaud, appreciate, enthuse and at times reward this fantastic army of unsung heroes. The High Sheriff’s post is unpaid and the individual receives no expenses, so he or she can therefore justifiably be numbered as a true volunteer themselves. 

For more than 1000 years High Sheriffs have been associated with Law and Order. Today they give their support to people who strive to make their communities safer places in which to live and work.
Through her year of office, Lady Ruggles-Brise, as the High Sheriff during 2011/2012, is raising money for the High Sheriff’s Fund which is administered by the Essex Community Foundation (ECF), a grantmaking charitable trust.

Through the Essex High Sheriffs’ Awards Scheme, which is administered by the ECF, it is often possible to provide some financial support for schemes where local people or organisations tackle crime and social problems in their communities.

The High Sheriffs’ Award Scheme was established in Essex in 1997 to reward community initiatives that address crime and anti-social behaviour. Each year the High Sheriff of Essex makes awards to voluntary groups and gives recognition to individuals who are tackling local problems. To date the High Sheriffs’ Fund has distributed over £280,000 to 344 voluntary and community organisations throughout Essex. There are many good examples of local initiatives, including theatre interactive anti-drugs projects, victim support schemes and diversionary activities for young people at risk. 

Volunteers are also highly valued and their hard work and commitment is essential to the services many organisations provide. To recognise the good practice of organisations that work with volunteers the High Sheriffs’ Volunteer Centres Essex Award asks volunteers to nominate their organisation for demonstrating encouragement, support, training and supervision to volunteers.

Grants are awarded annually from the High Sheriffs’ Fund. The deadline date is 30 November. To apply for a grant or to nominate an individual for recognition, please contact Essex Community Foundation on 01245 356018 for an application form or visit their website www.essexcommunityfoundation.org.uk 

Donations to the High Sheriff’s fund can be made online at www.justgiving.com/high-sheriff-essex-2011


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