News from Reading Neighbourhood Network
News compiled on 26 April 2019
Welcome to the latest Reading Neighbourhood Network Newsletter, where you will find all the latest news and events from our members. All our news and much more can be found on our website at
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News articles
  • Gift Aid Small Donations Scheme – limit has risen to £30

    25 April 2019

    From April 2019 the Gift Aid Small Donations Scheme (GASDS) limit has increased from £20 to £30. This means charities and community amateur sports clubs can claim top-up payments on small donations. You do not need to know the identity of the donors or collect Gift Aid declarations for small donations.

    For more information about GASDS and how to claim, see the website at

    Continue reading →
  • Age UK Berkshire launches new Friendly Gardeners Group

    18 April 2019

    News from: Age UK Berkshire

    Age UK Berkshire are delighted to announce the launch of a new Friendly Gardeners Group, which will start on the 26 April 2019 at the Friends Meeting House on Church Street. The group has been funded by The Southall Trust, Yew Tree trust and Cadbury Trust.

    The group will meet every Friday morning for two hours until October 2019 and will be run by Christina (a qualified Horticultural therapist) who will support the group with gardening as a means to improve health and wellbeing, as well as making friends.

    There are spaces for 8 people to join the group. It is designed to be a drop-in group but people may attend every week.

    Further information:
    -Fridays, 10:00 to 12:00.
    -Friends Meeting House (2 Church Street, Reading RG1 2SB).
    -First session free, then suggested donation of £3 each week.

    To find out more, call 01189 594242 or email

    Continue reading →
  • National Lottery Community Fund funding surgery

    17 April 2019

    Does your voluntary or community group need funding for a specific project?

    The National Lottery Community Fund funding officer for Reading will be offering one-to-one sessions to Reading voluntary and community groups on Thursday 27 June 2019 at the RVA offices, on the Third Floor of the Central Library.

    At your one-to-one, you will have the have the opportunity to canvas your idea for funding, whether it is for an existing service or an idea about a new service or activity. Please note that the National Lottery Community Fund funding officer cannot help you fill in the application form, but will give you general guidance and tips.

    This event is limited to Reading-based charities and community groups. More than one person may attend the session, but please only book one session per organisation.

    For more information and to book a session see the website at

    Continue reading →
  • Ready Friends Toolkit to be launched at next Befriending Forum

    11 April 2019

    Anyone interested in reducing loneliness and social isolation is welcome at the next Befriending Forum on Thursday 16 May 2019 from 12:30 until 16:00 on the Third Floor of Reading Central Library. This forum will see the launch of the brand-new Ready Friends Toolkit. Also on the agenda:

    -Transport and its role in reducing loneliness and social isolation.
    -Celebrating, promoting and learning from local befrienders.
    -Good news and information about what’s happening locally.

    The event is for anyone from local communities, groups and organisations in Reading and starts with a free lunch.

    If you would like to find out more about this event and about the Ready Friends project, please have a look on the website at, where you will find the agenda and registration details.

    Continue reading →
  • Win £1,000 for a Berkshire charity

    10 April 2019

    Three £1,000 prizes are up for grabs as Berkshire Community Foundation (BCF) launches its 2019 Vital Signs survey. BCF is asking people in Berkshire to spend five minutes giving their opinion of life in the county. As a thank you, they can nominate a charity to win one of the £1,000 prizes.

    You can take part in the survey online at

    Last year, three local groups – Autism Berkshire, Family Friends Windsor and Maidenhead, and Interakt – each received one of the £1,000 prizes. Now in its sixth year, Vital Signs uses the views of the local community, along with other research, to enable BCF to produce a community ‘health-check’ report.

    The results drive BCF’s fundraising. Last year’s Vital Signs reported that a safe home, good health and secure employment are all linked and underpin wellbeing, so BCF launched ‘Vital for Berkshire – Homes, Health and Work’. This campaign has already funded over 20 local groups that provide vital support including counselling, accessible transport, crisis support, education or training, health coaching, supporting people back into back into employment and tackling homelessness.

    Continue reading →

Upcoming events
  • Fri
    09:30 - 11:30Southcote Community Centre

    Coronation Sqaure, Reading RG30 3QP

    A support group for family members who have children/young people with additional needs living within the community of Southcote.

    A safe and supportive space for sharing experiences and gaining support with the unique challenges faced by families of children with additional needs.

    Each session will include a half hour talk about being a parent of a child with additional needs. The remainder of the session will be for discussion of the topic and social support time.

    • Refreshments provided
    • Children welcome under parent’s supervision
    • Topics for future sessions to be decided, after discussion with the group

    For booking and further information, please contact Charlie Taylor via email at or phone on 07810 689679.

  • Sat
    23:00Locations around Caversham

    Be part of Caversham's first Green Ticket Trail!

    Sellers: Time for a Spring clean? Do you have a house full of items which you would love to sell? No time to individually list them online? Why not host a Green Ticket sale from the convenience of your garage, driveway, porch or front garden for just £10? Register online at and receive all you'll need to run a successful sale, plus you'll be supporting a great charity - Helen and Douglas House. Once registered, on 27 April set up and sell.

    Buyers: Put the date in your diary. Discover many treasures along the trail and bag yourself a bargain or two. Meet your local neighbours and enjoy a different shopping experience. You’ll receive a map, for £1, with all the sale locations on it and discover pre-loved treasures and fabulous finds along the trail!

    It's all about selling something you don't want to someone who does - in your local community!

    More information can be found at

  • Sun
    11:30 - 16:00Great Expectations Hotel

    33 London Street, Reading RG1 4PS

    Come along and find out about LETS (Local Exchange Trading System) Come and meet LETS members over a cuppa. We trade with each other for "Bricks" - for instance someone may need their computer fixing or you may need your lawn mowing. You will need to have offers and wants ready for joining!

    Well we all have things we want don't we? We all have things to offer - our skills, sewing, gardening, material things we don't need; we could feed a cat, water a garden, take away rubbish, offer transport - the list is endless. LETS is about supporting each other without money and socialising and working together.

    So do join us on Saturday 28 April in The Christmas room at The Great Expectations Hotel, we look forward to meeting you!

    For more information please contact Gabrielle on 07802 800276.

  • Wed
    18:30 - 20:30St Laurence's Church

    Friar Street, Reading RG1 1DA

    Reading Soup returns for the second event of 2019 this May Day!

    Join us in the stunning venue of St Laurence for an evening of Community Projects, live music, art from local artists and delicious, home-made vegan soup!

    How Reading Soup works:

    • £5 gets you a warm bowl of delicious Soup
    • Local Groups and Projects pitch about their work to the crowd
    • The crowd vote for their favourite Project
    • The Project with the most votes WINS all of the door money
    • Plus there's live music and art on display to enjoy

    Children are welcome and the venue is fully accessible. Find out more on the website at

  • Wed
    19:30 - 21:00Reading International Solidarity Centre

    35-39 London street, Reading RG1 4PS

    Between 1995 - 2015 worldwide production of palm oil quadrupled. It is expected to quadruple again by 2050. Oil palm plantations account for 10% of all global cropland. It is a miracle crop for the producers. It gives the highest yield per acre of any oil seed crop.

    What is driving the massive increase in demand? What effect is it having on people and planet? What can we do?

    We will have a short film and talk followed by discussion.

    For more information please contact Jackie Oversby by email at

  • Thu
    12:00 - 14:00Reading Voluntary Action

    Third Floor, Reading Central Library, Abbey Square, Reading RG1 3BQ

    As part of this year’s Volunteers’ Week (1 to 7 June) and the Reading Volunteer Awards 2019, Reading Voluntary Action will be working with partners to curate an exhibition on the theme of volunteering. We are seeking creative representations of what volunteering means to those involved in, or benefiting from, voluntary work.

    Find out more about the exhibition at or by emailing

    If you’d like to get involved, we’re also holding a free drop-in workshop at Reading Central Library on 2 May 2019. The workshop will be led by artist Kate Shorey, who will be creating a volunteering wordgram. We’d love you to come along and contribute a word, phrase, or idea – or even work on your own submission!

    Refreshments will be provided. Please register online at

  • Fri
    10:00 - 13:00Berkshire West Your Way

    1A Rupert Square, Reading RG1 3HE

    Would you like to better manage your mental health and wellbeing?
    Would you like to be part of a supportive peer group?

    This group will provide a safe and supportive environment where participants will support each other and learn from each other to build on and develop skills to manage their own wellbeing.

    The group will run from 10:00 to 13:00 at Berkshire West Your Way on the following dates:

    • Friday 3 May
    • Friday 10 May
    • Friday 17 May
    • Friday 24 May

    If you would like to find out more or register for a place please contact Carole Connolly at Berkshire West Your Way, either by phone on 01189 660240 or email at

  • Wed
    13:00 - 15:00Elevate Hub

    Third Floor, Reading Central Library, Abbey Square, Reading RG1 3BQ

    Join us for our regular Volunteer Coordinators’ Network meeting facilitated by Reading Voluntary Action.

    You will have a chance to contribute to the agenda ahead of time so that we can make sure your issue or concern can be given some attention, as well as having the opportunity to seek peer support in a confidential space from others in a similar role.

    The format is pretty informal RVA provides the tea and coffee. Feel free to bring your sandwich and eat with us if it helps your day along. You don’t need to stay for the whole event – we know everyone’s busy.

    Click here to register

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