Big Event 2013 - resources available online

Resources from the annual Big Event conference are now online. The event took place in April, attracting 152 delegates from 94 organisations countywide in order to take a closer look at the process of commissioning. Powerpoint presentations from featured speakers Michael o'Toole (Crown Representative for Voluntary, Community and Social Enterprise sector, Cabinet Office) and Helen Rowland (RAISE) are now online as well as materials from 3 of the masterclasses offered on the day (in the areas of Leadership, The Commissioning Cycle and JSNA).

The Big Event is the largest voluntary sector event in east sussex and delegates left overwhelmingly positive feedback, describing the event as ‘thought provoking’ and ‘perfectly pitched’.The Big Event is run by SpeakUp Forum, based at 3VA. To view the online resources, visit the SpeakUp website at

East Sussex Benefit Helpline – (0333 344 0681

There is a new telephone advice helpline available for East Sussex residents who are affected by welfare reform changes. Lines are open Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm. Calls will usually be free because calls to 03 numbers count towards any inclusive minutes in landline or mobile packages. Otherwise they will cost no more than a call to a national number (01 and 02 numbers). Please note the new number following a technical issue.

Further information and a video outlining welfare changes are available here

Sussex Homeless Outreach Reconnection & Engagement - Small Grants Programme

Sussex Homeless Outreach Reconnection & Engagement (SHORE) has been set up by local authorities across Sussex to help tackle rough sleeping and single homelessness, with support and funding from central government. £50,000 of this government funding is now being released to support a new Small Grants Programme for voluntary and community groups in Sussex. SHORE wants to help small scale projects that help realise the vision of a No Second Night Out model across Sussex and make a practical difference to the lives of rough sleepers and single homeless people. Grants of between £1,000 and £5,000 will support low cost, high impact projects.

Successful projects will demonstrate evidence of need and the ability to make a real difference, for example:
• Prevention of rough sleeping and single homelessness
• Diverting & Signposting rough sleepers to relevant services
• Personalised approaches to supporting rough sleepers
• Piloting multi agency initiatives
• Increasing temporary accommodation and emergency bed spaces
• Supporting and empowering rough sleepers to realise their potential.

Closing date: Friday 26 July 2013 (decisions will be made in August).
Grants will be awarded for a period of up to one year with a start date of no later than January 2014.

For more information on who can apply, how to apply and for a copy of the application form, contact:
John Routledge
SHORE Project Co-ordinator
Eastbourne Borough Council
1 Grove Road, Eastbourne,
East Sussex BN21 4UH

Healthy Eastbourne Campaign

The Healthy Eastbourne Campaign is an Eastbourne Strategic Partnership project working with the Eastbourne Herald. The campaign has the support of partners at East Sussex County Council, Eastbourne Borough Council, Eastbourne Homes and voluntary and community organizations in the town. 

A new website been developed with financial support from Eastbourne Borough Council, Eastbourne Homes and a Health Improvement grant. The website is designed to give information on all the different events, activities and services in and around Eastbourne that are available to people wanting to improve their health. It covers everything from dance classes and cookery courses to services which support people to stop smoking. There are four main areas on the website:
  • Get Active 
  • Eat Well 
  • Health in Mind 
  • Find Support 
There will also be information about general services, local voluntary organisations, carers and resources, links to other useful web pages and news about health related campaigns.
The campaign is also developing a Directory of local clubs and activities and an Events calendar as part of the website and asks local clubs and activity organizers to send information which they would like us to add. This is very much work in progress so the Campaign would like to hear from people with details of activities or services we have not yet included. We are asking people to visit the website and email us with additional comments and news of their projects, services, campaigns and activities.

Anyone wishing to contact the Campaign group can email us at

Local groups helped to bid for over £1.5 million!

3VA, the council for voluntary services in Eastbourne, Lewes and Wealden, supports valuable community activity taking place near you by helping groups to do what they do. A look at a few of 3VA’s achievements from the last year reveals just how the organisation supports community action locally. 3VA:

  • helped local groups make strong funding bids. As a result of 3VA’s support, £758,000 was awarded to local groups in the last year alone (contributing to £1.6 million in funding to date).
  • helped 27 new groups to start up last year. These groups supported a range of issues, including groups to help young people, art societies, health and wellbeing organisations, patient forums and lots more.
  • gave one-to-one support to 266 groups last year. 3VA also ran 26 training courses in subjects ranging from workshops in applying for funding to first aid courses and Twitter training.
  • support the sector to share information and expertise. 
  • act as the voice of the sector 3VA has enabled issues to be championed with local decision makers during the last year.
So if your group is in need of support call 01323 639373, email or visit, to find out how 3VA can support your organisation.

East Sussex Drink Debate

During April to June this year, the East Sussex Drink Debate asked people their views about alcohol - the problems, the good things and any suggestions for dealing with problems linked with alcohol. We know that most people who drink do so responsibly, but some will end up in hospital because of alcohol misuse and local communities often suffer from alcohol related anti-social behaviour and crime.

The East Sussex Drink Debate was launched by the Safer Communities Partnership and consisted of an online survey, in-depth focus groups and we also spoke to people in supermarkets and shopping centres around the county.

Many people voiced their concerns about how alcohol impacts at an individual, family and community level. People also gave ideas about how the damage caused by drinking could be prevented, and these responses will help shape our future plans for dealing with alcohol related issues.

Later this summer we will be publishing the draft Alcohol Harm Reduction Strategy and we’d like to hear what you think. From the end of August you can give us your views on the draft strategy at The final version of the strategy will be published in autumn 2013.

East Sussex signs fibre broadband deal with BT 

East Sussex County Council signed a contract with BT to bring faster broadband speeds to thousands of homes and businesses in East Sussex. The deal between BT and the County Council builds on BT's on-going commercial fibre roll-out which means that 96 per cent of homes and businesses are expected to be able to access superfast broadband services (24 megabits per second and above) within the next three years.

Overall, the project will deliver fibre broadband coverage to 99 per cent of premises meaning that speeds will be much improved. The £34 million project is the culmination of two years' work led by East Sussex County Council in partnership with Brighton & Hove City Council, which saw it secure £10.64 million of Government funding last year - one of the highest allocations received in the country. This was matched by £15 million from East Sussex County Council's capital programme which is aimed at supporting economic development. In addition to covering the on-going costs of supporting and maintaining the network, BT will make a £5 million contribution towards the cost of installing the fibre infrastructure.

With the contract signed, Openreach, BT’s local network division, are now beginning work on planning and will be carrying out surveys over the coming months. This will enable the company to draw up definite plans for roll-out, which it and the County Council will work on together.

Wave Leisure wins awards

Wave Leisure Trust swept the board with three awards at the Seahaven Business Awards, organised by Newhaven Chamber of Commerce in May.

Wave Leisure Trust were also delighted to be able to collect an award from SPARK Network on behalf of the Newhaven Integrated Summer Holiday Programme for 2012.

More news from Wave Leisure is available here.

SPARK Update

East Sussex Council for Voluntary Youth Services (ESCVYS) is now known as SPARK – a network for young people's organisations. We provide support to voluntary and community groups working with young people aged 0–19 in East Sussex and have over 140 member groups across Lewes, Wealden, Eastbourne, Hastings and Rother. 

Have a look at our new website – – to sign up to receive our free bulletin and to find:

• low-cost training, including free coaching and training bursaries
• funding and networking opportunities
• advice on setting up and running your group

We are free to join and love to promote our members' events and achievements.
Please call us on 07921 485813 with any questions or email


Completion of the Lewes to Ringmer cycleway

In October 2010 the first section of the Lewes to Ringmer Cycleway was constructed. East Sussex County Council are now preparing proposals to complete the route and would like to hear what you think.
The completion of the cycleway scheme will improve access to jobs, education and services and create a safer environment for those walking and cycling between Lewes and Ringmer.

You can give us your views until 12 August.
Visit the Have your say hub at, call 01273 482263 or email

Changes to bus services

Over the next three years, East Sussex County Council needs to make £63 million of savings. As a consequence, we are reviewing a number of our services, including how we provide support to local bus services. Before making any changes to services we would like to know the views of the local community and other interested parties. All comments we receive will help us make decisions about the future provision of bus services in the county.
You have until 17 August to give us your views. Go to, call us on 0345 60 80 193 or email

Once we have developed our draft bus service proposal, we will ask for your views again in October or November.

  WHATS ON    

Lewes District Council - Talking and Working Together

Strengthening our Relationship with the Voluntary and Community Sector - an event for representatives of voluntary and community groups across Lewes District.
  • Tell us your priorities and find out about how you can work with Lewes District Council
  • Find out about support available for community groups
  • Tour Newhaven Fort
  • Hear from local community groups and celebrate success
Newhaven Fort on Saturday 6 July from 10am – 1pm. Free refreshments, information stalls and more.

Booking is essential. RSVP to Rachel Allan 01273

East Sussex Assembly Annual Conference

Date for the diary - the East Sussex Assembly’s Annual Conference is taking place on Thursday 17 October 2013 at the Winter Garden, Eastbourne (9am-12pm).
Economy, Jobs and Prosperity is one of the key themes of Pride of Place (the ESSP’s Sustainable Community Strategy for East Sussex). This event will focus on the topic of Economic Development, looking at the big issues in East Sussex and examples of partnership working taking place to successfully promote economic development and tackle local challenges. 

‘Market Place’ stalls will give delegates the opportunity to network, find out more about and sign up to some of the economic development initiatives.

More details to follow...

If a representative from your organisation would like to attend and you would like to recieve more information when it is available, please get in touch at

Brighton Housing Trust Training

Training courses for the voluntary sector in East Sussex during July and August 2013:
  • Motivational Interviewing – 3 & 4 July (Hastings)
  • Sexual Health & HIV Awareness – 9 July (Brighton)
  • Needs Assessment & Support Planning – 10 July (Brighton)
  • Developing High Performing Teams – 17 & 19 July (Brighton)
  • Managing Difficult & Aggressive Situations – 9 August (Brighton)
  • Safeguarding Adults at Risk – 14 August (Brighton)
  • Equality & Diversity – 21 August (Eastbourne)
  • Professional Boundaries – 21 August (Eastbourne)
If you would like further information about one of the courses listed, or would like to order a hard copy of the training brochure (April 13 – March 14), please contact the Training Team: Tel: 01273 645401 or email:

Community groups and businesses invited to Give and Gain

A free ‘Give and Gain’ event will be held at the Hydro Hotel, Eastbourne on Wednesday 10 July from 6pm to 8.30pm to allow representatives from voluntary groups and businesses to introduce themselves and begin building mutually beneficial relationships.

The simple idea behind the event is that all participants bring one example of something they could give and one example of something they would like to gain. In traditional ‘speed dating’ style, a mixture of businesses and community groups will be seated at a table and each participant will have two-minutes to explain who they are, what they do, what they could give and what they are looking to gain.

During the evening groups of people from each table will move and repeat the process so that a maximum number of connections can be made. There will also be informal networking opportunities after the ‘speed dating’ part of the evening.

Carole Dixon from the Education Futures Trust attended a recent ‘Give and Gain’ event held in St Leonards: “‘The Give and Gain event enabled the Trust to make a number of new links with local businesses. We are very grateful for the support that has materialised, including bursaries for young people for a summer school and backstage tours of the White Rock Theatre.”

This is a structured evening rather than a drop-in event and organisers 3VA would appreciate people arriving for registration at 6pm. There will be refreshments available at the beginning of the event as well as tea and coffee throughout the evening. 

If you would like to attend, please email Helen Meade via with your name, the name of your organisation, and your contact details.

The ‘Give and Gain’ event will be facilitated to enable connections to be made with light refreshments provided and free parking nearby, so why not come along and find out how your business or community group could benefit from making a new connection.


East Sussex Strategic Partnership Board Meetings

To view papers and minutes of previous ESSP Board mettings, see the meetings page of the ESSP website. 


East Sussex in Figures (ESiF) is the local information system (LIS) for the county.  It’s a website that provides access to essential data, information and analysis. For further details contact 01273 482030 or email

Area profiles are now available at parish levelArea profiles enable you to view, print and download summary profiles for different parts of the county.Where the tables, charts and maps section on East Sussex in Figures contains data on a particular theme, area profiles contain a number of pre-defined tables, charts and maps that present key information for the districts, wards and parishes in the county.

More information on how to create and use area profiles is available from this link or, from the News section of the front page of ESiF. 

Example area profile -  Population and households profile for Rye parish – Rother.

Area profiles are currently available on the following themes and additional themes will be added in the course of the year.
• Economy
• Population and households
• Equalities

2011 census briefings

Latest analysis of 2011 Census results for East Sussex includes briefings on:

• Local workforce characteristics
• Household characteristics
• Transport and travel to work

ESiF trainingThe next available ESiF Training Course will take place on the morning of Wednesday 20 November 2013 at St Marys House in Eastbourne. Please contact ESCC Corporate Training for more details.

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