Cuts to Health Association services

Knowle West Health Association has been forced to halve some of its services after cuts to its funding.

Now the voluntary organisation which works to ‘promote, protect and preserve good health and wellbeing’ is concerned local people could miss out if it has to run on reduced hours.

The Health Association’s services include a community kitchen, free counselling and Let’s Grow, a community food growing project.

The organisation was funded half from lottery funding and half from Public Health.  It was told last year the Public Health funding was being cut and it should apply for money from the new Bristol Impact Fund – but was unsuccessful as part of a collaborative bid.

Knowle West Health Association (KWHA) Community Development Worker Rhianan Lowes said: “A lot of the funding has gone into signposting organisations which will need to signpost to organisations in the community like us. If these organisations go there will be no-one to signpost to…

“We will apply for funding from other schemes to bridge that gap but at the end of June everything will be split in half, voluntary roles and jobs.

“We will still be doing what we can but not as much – the allotment and classes will continue on less hours and there is no money for development. It’s sad for the community because even if new ideas come in if we had funding we could help out.”

Joan Morton (79) is a member of the over 40s Friendship Club – which attends a weekly cookery class at KWHA.

She said: “If the class went it wouldn’t be very nice at all. We look forward to cooking on Tuesdays. It teaches you how to cook different things we wouldn’t at home… and how to cook things for one person and save money…which you’ve got to when you are a pensioner.”

KWHA also lost its subsidised foot care in May which was funded by the former Neighbourhood Partnership.