A HEXHAM-BASED charity which aims to promote a more inclusive society has received a welcome cash boost.

Adapt North East, on Hexham's Burn Lane, will benefit from a £20,000 donation from North-East housing association Bernicia.

Adapt North East offers an accessible transport service across Tynedale and operates an advocacy hub. The charity also runs a community cafe.

Northumberland County Council received £125,000 from Bernicia to support organisations working to help communities affected by Covid-19. 

The donation was awarded to a number of charities across Northumberland, including Blyth Valley CVA and North Northumberland Voluntary Forum, each receiving £20,000.

The remaining £25k will be used to help small organisations and rural communities with food deliveries, shopping cards and other essential services.

The cash is part of The Bernicia Foundation – a £1M charitable fund created by Bernicia to support organisations promoting social and financial inclusion and backing young talent in the North-East, and is part of a £200,000 donation to local authorities across the region.

Cllr Cath Homer, cabinet member for Community and Voluntary Sector support at Northumberland County council, said: “This is a phenomenal donation by Bernicia and I want to say a huge thank you to them for their support which has allowed charities, at the heart of this crisis, to react quickly and deliver critical services in our communities.

“Since the start of the outbreak, we have been working closely with our community and voluntary sector, launching the Northumberland Communities Together initiative to help co-ordinate the response and get the help to the people who need it the most.

“We have been overwhelmed by the generosity and support of both businesses and individuals for our initiative. They have all pulled together in our county’s time of need.”

Bernicia Chief Executive, John Johnston, said: “It is so heartening to see the speed with which Northumberland County Council has got our funding to those charities helping people and communities cope with the impact of COVID-19.

“We fast-tracked £200,000 from our charitable Bernicia Foundation to local authorities across the North-East to ensure it could be used immediately to support charities at a time when they need it most to carry out their vitally important work.”

Liz Prudhoe, of Adapt North East, said: “This donation has been an incredibly welcome boost to allow us to help people through these unprecedented times.

“Many of the people we are dealing with have never had to access the benefit system before and are finding themselves in exceptional circumstances, so to be able to get them the help they need, quickly, has been invaluable.”