Home-Start UK and the Pears Foundation announce the launch of a new fund to help ensure local Home-Starts can continue to deliver vital services during the cost-of-living crisis.

With huge thanks to Pears Foundation, the new £1 million Breathing Space Fund will be delivered over the next two years and will be used to help provide ‘breathing space’ to ensure that local Home-Starts are able to continue delivering vital services to families at a time when services are seeing greater demand than ever.

Inflation and higher fuel costs have placed small charities under pressure while, at the same time, fundraising has become harder as donors see their income squeezed. The Breathing Space Fund has been created to give local Home-Starts time to look for long term sustainability solutions while they continue to give much needed support to families.  

Home-Start North East Aberdeenshire is one of the first Home-Starts to receive funding. Having recently expanded their coverage to ensure that families remained supported after another local Home-Start was forced to close, they now want to ensure that this service can continue for the long term.

Melinda Stewart, Senior Coordinator of Home-Start North East Aberdeenshire said “The costs of our energy alone has tripled in recent months despite our usage being of a similar level to before the price increases. This funding will allow us to continue our wrap around support without interruption to families, allowing us to remain focused on them.”

Talking about the generous award, Home-Start UK’s Assistant Director of Fundraising, Sarah-Jane Pickering, said “It remains an uncertain and challenging time for charities and this grant will help, so we are delighted that the Pears Foundation have worked with us to develop a fund that will provide much needed breathing space for Home-Starts. The funding is enabling us to reach across an ever-growing gap for families at a time where there is little other support, demand is through the roof, and yet services have possibly never been more at risk.”

Sir Trevor Pears CMG, Executive Chair of Pears Foundation, said “We see Home-Start’s tried and tested volunteer model as an excellent example of how to mobilise community support to meet local need.

We are delighted and proud to work with Home-Start UK and encourage other funders to join us in supporting the Breathing Space Fund.”   

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