Voluntary Action Arun & Chichester


Members' Spotlights

Our member organisations do amazing things. Here are some of the achievements they have been celebrating recently. Contact us so we can highlight your successes.

Watch this space – more coming soon!

Latest News from VAAC

Thu 14 April 2022

Yada & The Esther Project

Yada is a charity working across coastal West Sussex with the aim to end the sexual exploitation of women. Our vision is to see a world where women can live a life free from violence, abuse and stigma. As part of this work, we run The Esther Project, a free, tailored, confidential support service for self-identifying women in the sex industry or at risk of sexual exploitation. This outreach usually takes place 1-1, where we work alongside individual service users to reach their goals, whether that is to access education, find a safe place to live, access debt support, practice better safety planning or talk through their experience in a safe, confidential, non-judgemental space. We also run wellbeing workshops in women-only spaces with partner organisations, such as Stonepillow, Emerging Futures, Safe in Sussex and Probation Services. All our outreach work is aimed at decreasing isolation and increasing wellbeing and safety.

If you are a professional who may engage with service users in the sex industry and would like support with understanding the industry (the routes in, the stigma involved, language and legal frameworks) as well as support with practical conversation tools, our free training would be perfect for you. If you have a team who could benefit from the training, please email our Student Outreach and Training Officer at kath@yadauk.org to book an in-person session. Alternatively, you can now access our training online through Eventbrite

If you sell or exchange sex, identify as female and would like some practical or emotional support specifically tailored to you and your goals, we would love to hear from you. Head to our website or social media to get in touch, call us or leave us a text at 07902 726432.

The Esther project A4 poster final 2

Wed 9 March 2022

Hourglass supporting older people in Sussex

“The Hourglass mission is simple: end the harm, abuse and exploitation of older people in the UK.”

As the UK’s only charity focused on the abuse and neglect of older people, we operate a free-to-call helpline 24 hours a day 7 Days a week (0808 808 8141) where clients can get information and support, as well as undertaking more in-depth casework through our Community Response Programme and supporting clients on a one-to-one basis.
On our website we also offer an IM service, and a Chat-box which will provide information around different types of elder abuse. Our website also includes a knowledge bank, which is a curated collection of advice, information and data regarding abuse.

Hourglass is the first charity in the UK to offer older victims of domestic abuse support from trained IDVAs who will uniquely specialise in working with those over 65. The IDVA’s will provide tailored and specialist support to older people throughout Sussex who have experienced domestic abuse.


Wed 23 February 2022

Saltwater Creations CIC

Saltwater Creations CIC provides fun, beach themed, arts workshops to local schools and organisations, to help people to improve their physical and mental well-being. They have been working with Arun District Council and Artswork as part of the Arun Inspires Arts and Well-being Project. You can see the beautiful art work created by two local schools here; https://sites.google.com/view/vitamin-sea/home

Saltwater Creations also received funding from the Homity Trust to then deliver a smaller version of the project in Arundel C of E school: https://sites.google.com/view/vitaminseaproject-arundel/home.

If you you are an organisation that would like to get involved in similar projects with Saltwalter Creations, please do get in touch. Jules@saltwatercreations.co.uk

Saltwater Creations 2 Saltwater Creations

Wed 16 February 2022

Age UK Community Agent

This week, Laura Newell, from Age UK West Sussex, Brighton & Hove is introducing herself:

“I am a Community Agent covering Arun. I work with people over 65 years old to alleviate loneliness and social isolation.

We have some Information Sessions coming up at the following libraries: Ferring 28/2 10am-12pm, Willowhale library 02/03 10-12pm, Rustington library 15/03 10-12pm.

Find out about activities, groups and clubs in your area or about other services Age UK offer.”


Age UK Community Agent   Laura Newell

Fri 11 February 2022

Friends of the South Downs

Founded in 1923 to fight proposed development on the Downs, we are the only membership organisation dedicated to conserving and enhancing the beauty and amenities of the South Downs National Park. We organise over 200 walks and strolls a year for our members many of which are open to the broader public. Our volunteers work to stop damaging building developments, to keep open the network of footpaths and bridleways and to extend the areas of access land on the Downs. We are always looking for volunteers to help, for example by leading walks or strolls, monitoring local planning applications or checking paths and byways. To help people better understand the importance of the South Downs National Park we also arrange talks and events relating to the geology, archaeology, landscape and cultural heritage of the South Downs. We receive no government funding relying on member subscriptions, donations and gifts in wills. Find out more at www.friendsofthesouthdowns.org.uk

In order to improve access to footpaths for people who can’t manage stiles we are financing the replacement of stiles with attractive wooden gates. So far we have converted 33 stiles to gates. One popular path that has been opened up to stile-free walking is the path from Glynde railway station to Lewes, where in May walkers can see many orchids.

Southdowns Stile 1 Southdowns Stile 2

Tue 8 February 2022

Words Out Loud - Poetry and Spoken Word

The Words Out Loud Vision is to generate a connected literary community confident of finding and sharing its voice in the local area.

Words Out Loud has been holding an in person Open Mic at Wagtail Coffee and Yoga in Chichester on the first Wednesday each month since June 2021, and a featured reader and Open Mic event on Zoom on the third Wednesday each month since March 2021. In this short time both have grown to the extent that the most recent event on Feb 2nd filled Wagtail completely!! The Zoom has an international flavour, attracting participants from the USA, Mexico, Ireland and other more distant parts of the UK.

It is clear from participants’ feedback that we are fulfilling a need in Chichester and the surrounding area and we are beginning to build a thriving community of writers and speakers out loud who previously had felt excluded from many literary arts activities in the area. We continue to grow our activities by visiting different local venues and by holding workshops for participants to develop their speaking and writing skills. For example we will be partnering with Pallant House Gallery in Chichester in April to provide a workshop in ekphrastic writing, writing inspired by works of art.


Words Out Loud small

Wed 2 February 2022

Southbourne Age Concern

Southbourne Age Concern are a registered charity in Southbourne which is run entirely by volunteers providing local residents over 60 with a meeting place, a low-cost meal, bingo, snooker (we have a full-sized table), music, tai chi, occasional trips out and the opportunity to make new friends over a cup of tea/coffee. Our aim is to provide a nutritious homecooked meal, reduce loneliness and increase the well-being of all those that attend every Wednesday. We have our own minibus to help our members get to and from the centre and just ask for a small contribution towards the fuel.

We are looking forward to taking our members and volunteers out for a meal in the next few weeks and we are currently planning our Jubilee celebrations later in the year.

At Southbourne Age Concern we are a friendly team that always welcome new volunteers and members, please feel free to pop in on a Wednesday between 1030 and 2 pm to meet us. If you would like to contact us please call Robert in the first instance on 07717 811345 or Sarah on 07900 002980.

Age UK Southbourne

Wed 12 January 2022

Cancer United end-of-year round-up

VAAC member Cancer United had a great year in 2021, watch their end of year round-up and see all the brilliant things they achieved.

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