A volunteer-led community interest company in Henfield has been awarded £65,000 of National Lottery funding to develop the existing building it manages under a long term lease from West Sussex County Council.
The grant will enable the Henfield Social Enterprise to create extra space at the Henfield Haven by building an extension onto the external wall of the café.
This space will be used to extend the café area and will enable the range and size of activities on offer to be increased, benefitting local people with illnesses, disabilities and/or who are lonely, as well as providing an extra room to let out to local groups which will help to sustain the key caring operations at the Haven.
Tony Jackson, a director of the community interest company overseeing the Haven, said: “We are delighted to have received this National Lottery funding which will enable us to create much needed extra space at the Haven.
“The increasing popularity of the centre since it opened shows how important it is that we can continue to meet the needs of our local community, particularly those facing and coping with various stages of dementia.”
The Henfield Haven was launched in November 2015 to provide a wide range of much needed services to the local community.
These services enable people living with dementia and other similar conditions to have access to high quality and inspiring support.
In addition, the Haven offers sessions giving isolated people opportunities to meet new people and try new things; these include a range of exercise classes, social activities and therapies.
The successful café provides refreshments and cooked meals, as well as support for carers and a hearing clinic.
Impact Initiatives, a Sussex-based charity, are responsible for the day to day management of the Haven.
Claire Webley, regional funding officer for the Big Lottery which is the largest funder of community activity across the UK, said: “Thanks to National Lottery players, communities large and small are able to get the funding they need to bring their great ideas to life.
“Every time someone buys a National Lottery ticket it raises vital funds that help make a difference to hundreds of people’s lives.
“We’re delighted to be able to support projects like Henfield Haven which is a fantastic example of people coming together to use their ambitions and aspirations to create something wonderful for their local community.”
Building work on the Haven is planned to start in October, with the extension being completed by next March.
Downs (Southern) Ltd, a building company located near Henfield, will carry out the work.