Local Oxford Charities: Suggest Additions through Comments


Here are some of the charities in Oxford or supported by Oxford residents that deserve our support. Please post corrections, and additions, to this list in the comments to this post.

  • Oxfordshire Council of Voluntary Action provides a very full list of local charities, and has a good search facility.
  • The Drug and Alcohol Foundation is in the process of setting up a specialised Eating Disorder Service. The DAF has been in existence for over 30 years offering therapeutic services to those suffering from an addiction, and recently there has been a large increase in the number of clients presenting at the agency with eating disorders – approx. 30% of the total number of clients. At present in the UK the majority of services for eating disorders are within the NHS; to offer a service in the community, based at DAF’s premises in Westminster will be less threatening and stigmatising to many clients. Two female members of staff will be assigned to the Eating Disorder Service and there will be twice-weekly group therapy sessions, weekly individual counselling, family therapy sessions, amongst other things.
  • The Samaritans have been providing confidential emotional support for the city and county for over forty years. In 20068 they received over 40,000 calls – more than 5,000 from people contemplating suicide. The Oxford branch needs to raise £40,000 in 2009 to maintain their service; they raise about half this money themselves by street collections, marathon running, etc, but rely heavily on donations from local organisations. A gift of £120 covers their costs for one day.
  • Oxford Young Carers Project seeks to support all young carers (under the age of 18) whose life is in some way restricted because of their need to take responsibility and inappropriatedly care for someone who is ill, has a disability, is experiencing mental distress, or is affected by substance abuse. There are over 6,000 unidentified Young Carers within Oxfordshire. This project offers support, advocacy in school, one-to-one support, time out from caring and trips away.
  • Oxfordshire Playbus provides mobile outreach services to children, young people and families across Oxfordshire, and their Sensory Vehicle has now ceased to function; for each of the past five years it has worked with over 400 beneficiaries who are either disabled children, children excluded from mainstream education because of emotional or behavioural difficulties, or adults with Alzheimers or senile dementia. Because it is mobile, the bus is able to access disabled people who cannot use sensory equipment in the other places it is available (normally only special needs schools and hospices). The Sensory Bus was very innovative five years ago, but now needs replacing: they want to purchase a lorry unit which should last 20 years, but the total costs will be around £137,000. The running costs are quite low and are currently met through grants, trusts and donations, but they are urgently seeking funds to help them buy their new vehicle.
  • Pathway Workshop is a local registered charity based in Blackbird Leyes that provides productive employment and training opportunities for people with a physical disability, learning difficulty, mental health issue and anyone who is at a real disadvantage in today’s labour market. Individuals are able to learn new skills in woodworking, machining and also social skills; all receive a salary of at least the minimum wage. They need to employ an extra Workshop Supervisor/Trainer on a salary of £18,000 in order to expand contracts, carry out training and ensure compliance with H&S regulations.
  • The Oxford Music Festival has been running for 35 years and encourages the playing of music by young (and sometimes older) people. This year it is a four-day event in which some 1000 young musicians, including undergraduates from the University, performance before an audience and professional adjudicators, who assess performances, offer advice and encouragement, and decide on prizewinners. In the UK there are more than 300 such Festivals, and in their formative years most professional musicians played in their local Festival and regard it as an important ingredient in the development of their careers.
  • Oxford Contemporary Music was founded 12 years ago by an Oxford student and began as a festival. It now has a year-round programme which includes over 30 concerts a year, an education and outreach programme and is working on behalf of Oxford City Council to help improve the infrastructure for music in the city. They have just held their third composers/performers weekend, which offers students and local artists the opportunity to share skills and experience; this is organised in partnership with the Oxford University Music Faculty and Oxford Brookes University. They also run a series of education and outreach projects, ranging for performances in day centres for the elderly and disabled to workshops with schoolchildren and master classes with visiting artists and university students.
  • Northmoor Trust is a local charity which runs the ‘Oxfordshire Kids on Farms’ project. Many young people have become dissociated with the practical reality of the origin of their food, and this project aims to give all children throughout Oxfordshire the opportunity to experience first hand how their food is grown and where it comes from. They arrange visits to farms (including the former Univesity farm at Wytham), farmers’ markers and other food-processing venues, and are looking for funding in order to keep down the costs charged to schools.
  • Oxfam is Oxford’d famous global charity.
  • Home-Start Oxford is a charity which supports families to give their child the best start in life; their aim is to offer support, friendship and practical help to families with a child under five, and particularly families who are vulnerable, isolated or under stress through home visiting by trained volunteers and other services. They have been supporting such families in Oxford for twenty years.
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2 Comments »

  1. Sam said

    A few of these are not really Oxford charities. A fuller list is available from the Oxfordshire Council of Voluntary Action (they have a good search facility) and can be found on http://www.oxnet.org.uk/.

  2. vrgblog said

    Thanks, Sam. This link has been added to the list. Don’t hesitate to suggest other specific charities.

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