The activity of the Hamnavoe Carers, both members and committee, continued in 2018 with the monthly whist meetings and the regular shopping trips going on throughout the year.
Following the AGM at the beginning of the year, and the success in accessing the Co-op Local Community Fund, an application was made for a grant towards the cost of a new minibus from the National Lottery funded Awards for All Scotland. In April, we received £10,000 which was a huge and welcome boost.
By May, all charities were under pressure to adhere to the new General Data Protection Regulation Policy (GDPR) and produce the relevant information and paperwork for members. Hamnavoe Carers now has all that in place and is available if requested.
In response to the requirements of the charity regulator, OSCR, in July Hamnavoe Carers was wound up as a charity and all its assets transferred to Hamnavoe Carers SCIO.
In April and July, we made our presence felt in the CO-OP of a Saturday morning, raising our profile, selling home-made goodies and encouraging folk to specify us as their chosen charity for the year. In November, the CO-OP Local Community Fund paid out their final sum and brought the total money raised by them, and donated to us, to £10,819.18. This put us in the wonderful position of being able to order the new minibus.
We were told by the conversion company that the price of the minibus would rise after December 1st so we decided that, rather than pay £500 more for the bus with a later ordering date, we would go ahead and commit to the purchase at the lower price.
About this time, it became apparent that this organisation is not VAT exempt and Voluntary Action Orkney advised us that becoming so was not advisable. That puts a significant extra burden on the cost but the treasurer is confident that we can still go ahead with the order.
Nevertheless, application has been made to Tesco for access to their community funding and thanks are due to Teesh Breck for organising that, although we have heard recently that there is a delay in them making their decision. Also, during the year, Skip McIver very kindly donated to us £600 that he raised from his model building exhibition and the Stromness Town Fund held a Bingo night in March which raised £1000 for the Hamnavoe Carers.
Our secretary, Donna Ritch and her colleague, Lisa MacKenzie, worked hard to develop our brand new website which can be found at www.orkneycommunities.co.uk/hamnavoecarers. My thanks must go to them for a very successful piece of work and for its ongoing maintenance.
This year, Lesley Clouston, the transport convenor, approached the summer outing from a new angle and organised the bus and its passengers to go to Hoy, Rousay and Westray. These seemed to be much appreciated. She organised both lunch and transport for these groups which was a significant piece of work.
Due to the success of last year’s Christmas lunch at the Golf Club, it was decided to repeat it this year and we were delighted to have such a good turnout, a wonderful meal from Jean Gatt, and very special entertainment from members of the Orkney Rocks choir. About 45 members attended and seemed very pleased with the result.
No year can go by without reflecting on the hard work and willing cheerfulness of the Hamnavoe Carers committee. Without their support and toil, my work would be impossible and the functions of Hamnavoe Carers would fail. My deepest thanks go to them.