The Harpenden Trust is here to help the local community. The Trust has been supporting Harpenden for over 70 years, currently involves some 500 volunteers, is funded by the people of Harpenden and provides support for individuals, families and young people and financial support to community projects.
The Harpenden Trust consists of the Care Fund and the Community Fund.
THE CARE FUND is the original Harpenden Trust, founded in 1948. It offers support for individuals, families and young people in need within Harpenden. It largely relies on funds raised by the Harpenden Trust’s Christmas Appeal. Much of its work is anonymous and unsung.
For Families & Individuals a Home Visitor can call and make an assessment and then arrange for confidential help: funding for those who have difficulty paying their electricity, gas and water bills; vouchers for food and school uniforms; supply new and recycled furniture and white goods; and outings arranged annually for families with young children.
For Seniors the Senior Outings Team will work to deliver a range of free trips and social events throughout the year, to senior Harpenden residents facing social and other isolation. Christmas food parcels are distributed to those who are housebound or are on their own at Christmas. There are two coffee mornings each week where free tea/coffee and biscuits are provided and seniors can chat with volunteers and friends.
The Harpenden Trust Seniors Fair is held each Spring at the Eric Morecambe Centre to showcase all that is available in Harpenden for Senior residents. We also offer Trust clients transport to our own events such as coffee mornings.
The Trust has substantially grown its ‘Wellbeing’ services including: Befriending brings people on their own into contact with a regular visitor, has expanded to approximately 80 befriendees each receiving weekly calls or visits from a Trust volunteer; Wellbeing Friends are allocated to NHS-referred clients needing special assistance; the Memory Lane Café serves people and families living with dementia and is run in conjunction with Harpenden Town Council and the Salvation Army; the local Frazzled Café is funded by the Trust with trained facilitators offering peer-to-peer support.
For Young People families can be provided with confidential help to meet the cost of school uniforms or essential school trips. This can be via a Home Visitor for uniforms or, for school trips, directly with the school. In addition, we offer outings for our Home Visits client families with children, which have had recent assistance, to local attractions.
The Care Fund is funded by the Trust’s annual Christmas Appeal, a door-to-door collection to all Harpenden households.
THE COMMUNITY FUND, which originated in 2008, provides financial support for community projects in the Harpenden area, with grants for specific projects designed to develop, improve or enhance their work or for facilities for their members and particularly to those organisations linked to youth and education and seniors. All Community Fund grants are made from income from the Abbeyfield Endowment
The Trust is run by volunteers, regular and seasonal, and we are always looking for new helpers.
Regular involvement includes making home visits, befriending, helping at coffee mornings and on coach outings, and staffing the Trust office.
Seasonal involvement includes our Christmas Appeal collection which provides around 50% of the funds we need to support our work with families and individuals.
To see the full range of our volunteering opportunities please go to "How you can help" on our website www.theharpendentrust.org.uk
Volunteers receive any necessary training and the full support of the Trust.