The Bridge Project is funded by The European Social Fund and the National Lottery, through the National Lottery Community Fund
The Bridge Project brings together Partners and Agencies in Northumberland to improve peoples lives, create opportunities and make a positive contribution to Northumberland communities and the regional economy. You can read more about the Bridge Partnership here.
Led by Northumberland County Council, Bridge are working with people who face the biggest barriers and challenges, no matter what, to connecting or reconnecting with education, training, volunteering and work. Working together with a number of Partner organisations, each organisation has been handpicked to deliver the project based on their varied specialisms working with people and communities with financial issues, mental health issues, building employment skills, volunteering among many more…not only creates bridges, in the truest sense of the word, but also "bridges" of help in relation to many people of their mental and physical health, while seeking help from volunteers, people not only can get access to many.
The Bridge Project is funded by the European Social Fund and the National Lottery, through the National Lottery Community Fund. The project has received up to £3.4m of funding from the National Lottery Community Fund and the European Social Fund as part of the Building Better Opportunities Programme which is part of the 2014-2020 European Structural and Investment Funds Growth Programme in England. The Department for Work and Pensions is the Managing Authority for the England European Social Fund programme. Established by the European Union, the European Social Fund helps local areas stimulate their economic development by investing in projects which will support skills development, employment and job creation, social inclusion and local community regenerations. You can read more about the fund here.
Please contact Lisa or Leanne on 01670 858688.
What is a Bridge Connector?
Bridge Connectors are existing beneficiaries who have experience of being involved in the Bridge Project. They will have developed new skills from the support, learning and training received from any partner, Bridge Worker or staff member. They will be able to share their experience and understanding of the programme with a new beneficiary coming into Bridge and will be able to support the new beneficiary’s development in a number of ways.
They will be able to provide 1:1 support to new beneficiaries in a variety of roles including (but not exclusive to);
- A befriending role; giving the new beneficiary support and confidence to stay on the programme
- Supporting new beneficiaries in attending appointments and interviews (GP/Citizen Advice/volunteering interviews)
- Support in accessing foodbanks and shopping on a budget
- Supporting beneficiaries to engage in new hobbies and community activities including volunteering
- Working with the Bridge Workers, through the Co-ordinator, to provide identified support when required
- Supporting a new beneficiary whilst undertaking training
- Recruiting new beneficiaries onto the Bridge Programme
- Facilitating and being involved in Bridge Connector Forum meetings
- Supporting beneficiaries when moving into supported volunteering
- Supporting with independent travel
The Bridge Connector will be supported by a Project Co-ordinator, who will liaise with the Bridge Workers and other partners to “match” the Connector with a new beneficiary. Ongoing support will be provided by the co-ordinator, either through 1:1 meetings or group support sessions. Further training will be provided as Bridge Connector roles develop.
The Bridge Connector will be able to share their experiences of the project with the beneficiary, should have good listening skills, be patient, be able to support others who are less confident, be willing to undertake continuous training/learning and be non-judgemental.
As a result, their confidence will increase, their skills and knowledge will be enhanced, and they will gain further transferrable skills to move into a positive outcome.