The Chesterfield and North East Derbyshire Council for Voluntary Service and Action Limited



Date:  14th August 2020

                             Issue: 101


Due to the outbreak of Covid-19, the Links Board of Directors has made the decision to temporarily close the office until further notice in order to minimise any potential risk to our staff and VCS group representatives in support of the official attempt to slow down the pandemic. If there are any changes, we will keep you informed.

Please note that the staff will be working from home and can be contacted on the details below during our usual office hours 10:00am-4:00pm Monday to Friday. Our email address will still be monitored as normal.

Sandra Pink (Advice & Project Manager) – Email: Mobile: 07889 726846.
Jon Wynn (Administration & Information Worker) – Email: Mobile: 07493 209255
Martin Conlan (ICT Support Worker) – Email:
Sushri Wells (Freelance BME Engagement Co-ordinator) – Email: Mobile: 07876 617050 (For BME Engagement Forum Enquiries)
James Lee (Chief Executive) – Email:

We will keep you updated as we receive more information.

Summer Activities for Children in Chesterfield Survey

Are you organising summer activities for children and families?

We would like to hear about them so that we can spread the news.

If you would like to be included please complete the survey below.

Help Needed in Chesterfield & North East Derbyshire Survey

We know about the community groups that operate and the good work that you all do.  Sadly, we understand that many of you have had to close down due to the Coronavirus crisis.

We are now mapping the help that is available in your residential area. 

However, there are still people needing help, mainly for shopping, collecting prescriptions, someone to talk to; and they could be your neighbours. 

Are you doing this in your local area or do you know of any people who have got together and are offering neighbourly support to people in need?

We would be grateful if you could complete this survey so that you can be added to the list of help in Chesterfield & North East Derbyshire.

Link to survey here -

Chesterfield COVID-19 support directory

Comprehensive directory providing details such as:

  • national and local resources
  • support on how to stay active as well as health and wellbeing information
  • where to get home food deliveries as well as emergency food provision
  • personal and business financial support and guidance
  • resources for children and parents

The directory can be accessed here -

Please use the contact link at the top of the page to suggest corrections or contributions to the information in the directory, making sure you select ‘other.’


Included in this bulletin:

Eastwood Park - 75th Anniversary of VJ (Victory in Japan) - Saturday 15th August 2020

Shelagh's Sewing Circle

Active Derbyshire

Derbyshire County Council

Invitation to Join Link Volunteer Pilot

Cleaning up litter in Chesterfield's waterways

Bedbound Derbyshire singer releases debut album

Communication Unlimited production of VARM Podcast

Writing for Wellbeing

Time to Enjoy Summer Safely in the Peak District & Derbyshire

Eastwood Park - 75th Anniversary of VJ (Victory in Japan) - Saturday 15th August

A National Event to mark the 75th Anniversary of VJ (Victory in Japan) commemorations and celebrations

WHERE ?: The War Memorial Eastwood Park, Hasland S41 0AY

WHEN ?: Saturday 15th August

Gathering at the War Memorial for Last Post at 11.00 and Sunset at 20.15 (8.15 p.m)

Please observe social distancing and, if accessing the park via the main gates, use the left hand gate to enter...following the signage and directions by marshals.

Check the Community notice board, at the One Stop for more details

Shelagh's Sewing Circle



A pop-up drive-through coronavirus testing site will be in place in Ilkeston town centre this week from Friday 14 August to Monday 17 August 2020.

Coronavirus testing site in Ilkeston this weekend

We are delighted to announce the launch of Link  Volunteer (, a platform built to provide community groups a way to easily manage and track their volunteers, orders and deliveries.

Link Volunteer, in association with The Big Community Sew, would like to invite your group to join us as one of our first pilot groups as we look to expand our network nationwide.

Designed and built during the Covid-19 pandemic, Link Volunteer was initially created by DC Tech to aid the organisation and tracking of both volunteers and orders for a local community sewing group, Shelagh’s Sewing Circle. This group are already successfully managing over 23,000 items and 630 orders through Link Volunteer.

Following discussions with ‘The Big Community Sew’ (, it became apparent there are many similar local groups producing and donating a wide variety of sewn items for our frontline and key workers, but the scale of this demand has meant that in a lot of cases spreadsheets have become unable to efficiently handle this task.


What can Link Volunteer offer?

Volunteers – Your group will be added to a nationwide list of groups helping in similar ways during this pandemic. What this means is that fresh volunteers signing up through the Link Volunteer portal will be encouraged to join your group if it is in close proximity to them, enabling you to gain volunteers in your local area and strengthen your cause and group.Once submitted, you can review and accept new volunteers into your group via the dashboard. Volunteer details are easy to find, access and assign to orders.

Orders – creating an order and tracking it through each stage until delivery can be difficult, particularly when there are a lot of orders in various stages of completion. Link Volunteers offers a simple to use solution to this problem utilising a simple and all-encompassing data viewer, where you can mark and sort orders into fully customisable labels, allocate orders to volunteer users and create your own workflow to suit your group's needs.

Items – we understand that each group has specific items they produce and designs they use to do so; this is why Link Volunteer allows you to not only add your custom items into a 'Community Catalogue', but also enables you to find new products and designs to produce as needs and demands continue to change.

Tracking – Link Volunteer tracks what's important. Every order marked as completed can add automatically into your total number (easily available on and shareable through your dashboard). This will allow you to accurately and quickly track how many items you’ve produced, which organisations have benefited and how many active volunteers your group has.


How much does Link Volunteer cost?

Link Volunteer is being offered free of charge to any community group who are very kindly donating their time and skills for our frontline and key workersduring this Covid-19 crisis. To this end, Link Volunteer does not allow or accept payments via the platform for the orders you enter into it. 

We very much hope you would like to join this Link Volunteer pilot.

For further information or to join, please email  

Thank you for all the amazing work you have done so far and I look forward to hearing from you.



Link Volunteer

Cleaning up litter in Chesterfield's waterways

Wednesday 19th August, 7pm, via Zoom

Register here

Join local catchment officer, Matt Duffy, from the Don Catchment Rivers Trust for an overview of their 'Hidden Heritage, Secret Steams' project (funded by the National Lottery Heritage Fund) situated in the Chesterfield district and surrounding areas. In the presentation Matt will be talking about the history of the Rother catchment, nature's rebound back to it's waters and the current pressures it's under including why Don Catchment Rivers Trust make removing plastic pollution from our rivers one of the central points to their projects. Matt will be including some interesting things they've found during their volunteer litter picking days and how you can volunteer to make the Rother better for people and wildlife."

A singer who has ME has released her debut album, after spending two years recording it while bedbound, with it currently number two in the Amazon Best Sellers chart ahead of Taylor Swift.

Kara Jane Spencer, 29, from Shirebrook, Derbyshire, was diagnosed with the debilitating condition when she was just 16 after she became unable to walk.

Her movement is now severely restricted, and she needs full-time nursing care.

In May, she asked for help to complete the album and more than 100 musicians and producers came forward to offer their services.

Kara said her symptoms were so severe, doctors have warned it could shorten her life expectancy.

However, she was “overwhelmed” with the number of people who have offered their services, with her beginning the album in January 2018 during a stint in hospital.

A small team of musicians, technicians and producers took vocals recorded from her bed and built them up into fully formed tracks.

The finished album, titled ‘It’s Still ME’, became available to purchase and download on Saturday (08 August) with donations being made to The ME Association. Kara hopes to raise £100,000 for a Post-Mortem M.E. Tissue Bank.

Read more about Kara and her story:

Kara has written a piece about her COVID-19 experience for Derbyshire Voluntary Action’s Life in Lockdown book - you can find out more about the book HERE

Further to the success of the Derbyshire Safeguarding Adults Board’s Vulnerable Adult Risk Management (VARM) Podcast, Communication Unlimited were approached to ask if they would consider producing a British Sign Language version of the Podcast.

Derbyshire Safeguarding Adults Board are pleased to say that they have jumped on board very quickly to assist with this and produced the Podcast within a matter of day.

The link is below for you to access this:

Writing for Wellbeing on the theme of Kindness

Derbyshire author Leonie Martin is offering a choice of four September dates on Zoom for her latest Writing for Wellbeing workshop on the theme of Kindness. All four workshops will include the same engaging writing activities and an opportunity to share your work within a safe and relaxing ‘virtual’ space.You’ll need access to Zoom along with writing materials. Early booking is advised as the number of places has been reduced to suit the online environment. To choose a date and book your place, please click on the link below:

To view information please click link below

The Peak District & Derbyshire

Coronavirus Covid-19 Advice & Guidance Previous Mailings

Coronavirus Covid-19 Local Updates Previous Mailings

Coronavirus Covid-19 Funding News Information

The Coronavirus Covid-19 Local Updates Bulletin is compiled by the staff of Links from a wide range of information. While every effort is made to check the accuracy of the material, no liability can be accepted for any error or omission. Inclusion of an item in the bulletin does not mean approval or recommendation by Links.

We are happy for you to send this information to other groups, but please acknowledge the source.

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Links: The Chesterfield and North East Derbyshire Council For Voluntary Service and Action Limited

Offices 1 & 2, Lower Ground Floor of Town Hall
No. 1 Rose Hill East
Chesterfield, S40 1NU

Company Limited by Guarantee No.4294079 / Registered Charity No.1089963
Tel 01246 274844