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Southport Reporter®

Edition No. 189

Date:- 26 February 2005

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CHARITIES risk having their bank accounts emptied in a clever, but nasty new scam, the Charity Commission warned today. Fraudsters obtain charities' bank account details from GiftAid forms and use this information to set up standing orders, taking funds away from charities and into the accounts of thieves. The Commission today urges charities to check bank statements thoroughly for rogue payments and to consider deposit-only accounts for charitable donations.

Sign, the National Society for Mental Health and Deafness, uncovered the scam when it spotted two new standing orders adding up to hundreds of pounds set up on the charity's account. It immediately contacted its bank and stopped the standing orders before any money was lost.

Steve Powell, Chief Executive at Sign, said:- "It's a sad fact of modern times that charities have to constantly fight against clever con artists. We all have a duty to be aware of the forms these scams can take and to take steps to protect charitable funds."

Andrew Hind, Chief Executive at the Commission, said:- "This is a particularly worrying scam because it requires no contact with the charity. In turn, this leaves charities with no opportunity to become suspicious. We urge charities to consider deposit-only accounts for charitable donations and to contact its bank if unsure about any standing orders."

Letter To Editor:- "Yes Closed?"

DEAR Southport Reporter, "I am interested as to when Yes & Co, Premiar closed? I wanted to get some clothing from them and was shocked to see the doors clossed and a strange notic placed in the window on the main door. Do you know why it closed and when?" Virginia Warne

Note from editor:- It was close, as far as we know a know last week. We will try and find out why and when for you.

Cash on the menu for Sefton's community groups

THERE'S money on the menu for Sefton Community groups cooking up new ideas to promote healthy eating in the area. The Community Foundation for Merseyside is working up an appetite to award grants worth up to £400 to help local organisations encourage healthier eating habits among people in the Sefton area. The grants come from The Community Fund for Healthy Eating, managed by the Community Foundation for Merseyside, and supported by a partnership of the Big Lottery Fund, Alliance & Leicester, Neighbourhood Renewal Fund and both South Sefton and Southport and Formby Primary Care Trusts.

Grants have already been used to fund fridges, equipment and seeds for local allotment projects, healthy eating courses, and provide nutritional breakfasts and snacks for children at breakfast, homework and after school clubs at schools across the area. Groups who have benefited from the fund include The Bosco Society in Bootle which scooped £400 to fund a horticulture project, Tweenie Tots 2 in Litherland used its £400 to buy healthy snacks and a blender and Southport YMCA secured £400 to buy fruit and provide leaflets on healthy eating. 

Community Foundation Grants Officer Joan Ford explained:- "Since this fund started, there has been a lot of interest shown in healthy eating by the people of Sefton and we've received many applications from groups who want to try and promote a healthier diet. We have another round of funding available to community and voluntary groups in the area."

Kate Hutton, Health Promotion Specialist, Sefton Health Improvement Support Service, added:- "This is an excellent scheme that supports local projects which make a real difference to people's lives. The popularity of the fund shows that people are thinking more about what they eat and how it can affect their health and well-being."

To apply for funding groups must be based or work in the Sefton borough and promote healthy eating. The closing date for applications is March 4.

The application forms are available from the Community Foundation for Merseyside, phone them on 0151 9664604 to get a copy.


IS Halewood home to the next Ms Dynamite or JK Rowling? From rap to writing and from sport to singing, teenagers in Halewood could be soon be shaping-up to become the stars of tomorrow, thanks to Halewood Youth in Community Centre becoming one of the first in the country to gain official 'Make Space' Status!

'Make Space' is a campaign to create a nation-wide network of contemporary after-school clubs for young people, funded by the Nestlé Trust. By achieving Make Space' status, clubs become eligible to apply for a number of activities which the campaign provides such as making their own records and learning new sports and dance moves.

Halewood Youth in Community Centre was awarded 'Make Space' status after providing evidence that it met the necessary criteria, including the provision of a chill out room in which young people can relax after school hours.

Make Space clubs offer a safe and welcoming environment for young people aged 11-16 out of school hours. In addition to a chill out space, Make Space clubs provide access to a range of activities and opportunities funded by Nestlé, including sports and creative activities. They also provide quiet areas for study or homework support. Research* shows that boredom is one of the main complaints of young people throughout the UK with six out of ten teenagers and eight out of ten parents thinking that there is simply not enough for young people to do in their area, and 80% of teenagers admitting they often feel bored. 

The aim of the Make Space clubs and the activities they provide is to alleviate this boredom and provide young people with a stimulating and sociable place to congregate.

Halewood Youth in Community Centre has gone from strength to strength during the past several years through its committed approach toward work with young people in the Halewood area of Knowsley. This is a direct result of the dedication shown by staff of the Centre toward the development of its work with young people, and through its local community who now view this resource as having a pivotal role to play in its social regeneration. 

Mark Nelson, Centre Manager, said:- "Halewood Youth In Community Centre is fast becoming the largest full-time voluntary sector youth agency in Knowsley due to its rapid development that will be greatly augmented through the 'Make Space' status award, which is funded by the Nestle Trust. The award can only enhance the delivery of services to its young people who will benefit greatly from an increase in the variety of opportunities that they are able to openly access." 

Baroness Thornton, chair of the Make Space Development Fund, said:- "I'm delighted to congratulate Halewood Youth in Community Centre on achieving 'Make Space' status. It is always very encouraging to see a community committed to investing in local youth - and this status means that there will now be even more opportunities for these young people."

* Figures taken from Nestlé Family Monitor, an examination of what 11 to 18 year olds do with their time when they are out of school, published October 2002.

Mersey Beatles Play To An Apprecitive Audiance

Mersey Beatles play to liverly audiance at Southport arts Centre.   Photograph Patrick Trollope.
Photograph by the bands Official Photographer Patrick Trollope

THE band is Liverpool's Number One Beatles Tribute Band, the Cavern Club Resident Band and Official Ambassador for The City Of Culture 2008 and now Southport's favorite Beatles Tribute Band.

The band photographed above on stage at the Southport Arts Centre  was playing to an ecstatic audience on Saturday 19 February.   This gig marked the start of the last leg, of the bands latest tour around the North West.   

One of the Audiance commented "Some of the style is not authentic, but in all the attention to detail is extremely high and at time it takes you back to the real Beatles playing in the Cavern.  It was a joy to here them playing.   They are really good ambassadors for Liverpool and also for music.  Keep it up lads!"  Paul Naylor, Churchtown. 

If you missed them you still have a chance to see the band at St Helen, Theater Royal on 25 February, March 9 at Buxton Opera House, 11 March at the Albert Hall in Stirling and the closing night at the Liverpool Neptune theatre.

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