It was clear some time ago that as the autumn and winter months approached that people would be deciding between heating their homes and putting food on the table. Whilst we all wish this would not be the case, with energy bills and other costs rising, we want to help the residents of Oldbury Court and Frome Vale most impacted by the national cost of living crisis to have access to help and support.

Through discussions between the Council and local organisations, the concept of warm, Welcoming Spaces was developed and is being rolled out across the city. As the owners of The Vassall Centre, Bristol Charities are supporting this initiative by opening up the Vassall Centre to host one of these spaces.

Charity Wallis, the Centre Manager says “We want to support local residents struggling with rising energy prices and the cost of living by providing access to a range of support on-site, locally, or on-line. Our local Welcoming Space will be open for all and will offer access to the following:

  • A warm place to connect with people over a free hot drink
  • Access to advice (you may need to book a session)
  • Signposting and referral to other services
  • Free Wi-Fi, phone charging, telephone, and access to computers
  • Access to snack or a meal at our on-site café
  • Support for grant applications for essential household items

In addition to the above services Bristol Charities will also be working with other organisations to broaden support to potentially include Winter Emergency Food Packs, Household goods including essential appliances, mental health support, energy and money advice, hot desks for people working at home through the winter, and an Affordable Christmas Fayre.

Your Welcoming Space at Vassall will open on Tuesday the 8th of November and will remain open every Monday to Friday 10.00am to 12.00pm and 2.00pm to 4.00pm through the winter.

Charity goes on to say “We can’t do this on our own so if you are a local project or organisation that could offer a service or an individual that could volunteer, we need your help.”

If you’d like to make a difference in your community during the cost of living crisis and you have some time to spare there could be a range of volunteering opportunities from befriending and peer support, to cooking and driving then please get in touch on 0117 965 9630 or  [email protected]