Canterbury City Council's environmental services partner Serco has selected three local charities to benefit from its Waste Collection Guarantee (WCG) Fund. Mental health and wellbeing charities Umbrella Centre of Herne Bay and Whitstable Umbrella Community Centre, together with homelessness charity Porchlight will each receive at least £5,000 a year for the next two years.
The charities were carefully selected by a panel comprising representatives from the Council and Serco. The judges were impressed by the strong cases for funding put forward by the three organisations and believe that their activities would truly benefit the local communities of Canterbury.
The Umbrella Centre of Herne Bay will use their donation to run new drop-in support sessions during the evening and weekends for those affected by mental illness. The centre provides support for people in the Herne Bay community and surrounding areas who are experiencing mental health and/or associated learning disabilities.
Whitstable Umbrella will support individuals, families and children at risk of poverty and/or social exclusion with practical and emotional support with their award. Porchlight plan to set up a 'Brighter Futures Activities Programme' for the vulnerable children and young people they work with in Canterbury District.
Additionally, Serco contributes directly every time a bin is not collected by donating the cost of the missed bin collection to top-up the £15,000 fund by. More information will be available next month when the WCG scheme is launched.
Geoff Dunne, Contract Manager for Serco in Canterbury, said: "The WCG Fund demonstrates our service promise to Canterbury City Council and the residents of Canterbury. We are dedicated to providing the best service we can and if we don't meet our service pledge to get collections right, we have promised to add the cost of each missed bin to the £15,000 WCG Fund as part of the scheme. We are delighted to be funding and promoting these three worthwhile charities over the next two years to ensure their good work is supported, accessed and recognised."
Cllr Rosemary Doyle, Executive Member for the Environment and Street Scene - Canterbury City Council, added: "I feel privileged to have been on the panel that selected these three worthy causes. Many praiseworthy charitable organisations applied to the Waste Collection Guarantee Fund and it was extremely difficult to have to select only three. The work they do to help vulnerable people in the community is highly commendable and Serco's funding will make a positive impact."