To help with the rapid response to COVID-19, the Evelyn Trust has made an urgent call for projects that could contribute to the national and local effort. Following discussions, the trustees agreed on three key areas where trust funding could make a real difference now.
“The trustees were unanimous that we have a vital role to play in this crisis. We are uniquely placed both to support research which could help patients across the world, but also to fund urgent help for isolated or disadvantaged people in our communities who may have been affected medically, psychologically or financially by the broad impact of this pandemic,” explains Will Dawkins, chair.
COVID-19 related medical research
The trust has put a call out across the Cambridge Biomedical Campus for research proposals that aim to combat the COVID-19 pandemic.
Funding of up to £300,000 has been made available immediately for a project that will:
have an impact on the fight to contain the pandemic;
or assist COVD-19 patients to recover;
or will improve understanding of how to contain the virus;
or alternatively will provide a deeper understanding of how to manage the hospital environment.
Applications are now being considered.
Mental health support for NHS staff
Bill Pike, charity director, says: “The trust has agreed to support the expansion of Addenbrooke’s Psychological Support Service for staff, in partnership with ACT, the Addenbrooke’s Charitable Trust. This service is working to support staff who may be experiencing trauma or high levels of stress and anxiety due to their work during the outbreak. The service aims to foster resilience, reduce burnout and reduce the risk of post-traumatic stress disorder using a range of initiatives. These are now in the process of development, but include a Safe Hands scheme to offer listening experts to members of staff and an extended Employee Assistance programme with a 24-hour helpline.
Community health and well-being
Bill continues: “In addition to this, £40,000 in emergency funding has been allocated for up to eight projects from local Cambridgeshire charities working on health and well-being in the community. Successful proposals will support online, home delivery or outreach services that are designed to support families or individuals in need who have been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. The aim is to support thousands of people across Cambridgeshire over the next three to six months through organisations that have established reputations for delivery in their communities.”