Age UK Berkshire provides both free and chargeable services for older people in Berkshire.
Our free Information and advice is offered on a wide variety of topics of interest or concern to people in later life, family, friends or carers. They also offer free befriending and other loneliness-combating activities. Age UK Berkshire covers the whole of Berkshire county.
Age UK Reading provides vital information, advice and other services to support thousands of older people of all ages and backgrounds, including those from disadvantaged or marginalised groups, such as those living in deprived areas, or black and minority ethnic older people.
Age UK Reading services cover the whole area of Reading.
Berkshire Women's Aid (BWA) serves the communities in Reading, Bracknell, Wokingham and West Berkshire providing domestic abuse accommodation and outreach community services to provide safety and a space to rebuild a future free from abuse.
We also offer individual and group programmes, with specialist programmes for children and young people and women with complex needs.
We run a 24/7 helpline providing support and information about our services and signposting to other support for anyone affected by domestic abuse
The British Red Cross is a humanitarian organisation that has a range of support services available locally in Reading and across the UK.
They help refugees, asylum seekers and vulnerable migrants become familiar with their local area and access essential services.
They also loan out mobility aids and support people to become more independent when going home from hospital.
Citizens Advice Reading provide comprehensive generalist advice to help people with a wide range of problems including benefits, employment, debt and money, consumer, immigration and asylum, relationships and family, energy and utilities, housing, discrimination, law and rights, health and community care and education.
Their services are free, independent, confidential and impartial.
CommuniCare offer non judgemental, free information and advice on a wide range of topics including housing and benefits. They try to think of the "whole person" rather than just the "problem considered" and take a holistic view of the person and their issues to come up with a complete support package.
Dingley’s Promise delivers life changing support to children in the early years with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND) and their families. We provide specialist learning through play at our centres, support for families through our outreach service, and training and advice to mainstream settings.
Our three Dingley’s Promise centres are located in Reading, Wokingham and West Berkshire.
Graft Thames Valley provides support, information and advice for people experiencing barriers to gaining meaningful employment. With both group sessions and one-to-one support, Graft offers a tailored plan of action to make each individual more employable.
The Graft service is open to anyone who is struggling to get into work, but is particularly suitable for those with mental health conditions of any kind, and those living with ASD or Aspergers.
Healthwatch Reading has three main functions: Firstly, to understand the needs, experiences and concerns of local people who use health and social care services and to speak out on their behalf. Secondly to provide information and advice on health and social care services including care assessments and rights to care and treatment. Thirdly we provide statutory and non-statutory advocacy services. Healthwatch Reading can assist and take feedback from people living or working in Reading.
Launchpad provide three key services, which help to prevent homelessness and support people individually: a Drop-In Information and Advice service to anyone in Reading who needs housing or homelessness-related advice; clean, safe housing combined with individual, targeted support to get people back on track; and support for single parents, families, couples and individuals to stay in their own homes by helping them with landlord related issues.
The Mustard Tree identifies and addresses unmet needs in our communities, developing projects that reduce health and social inequalities, increase community engagement, and give a voice to the unheard. It operates the following projects:
- Starting Point - Providing mentoring and creating opportunities for young people aged 11-25 who face disadvantage. Supporting young people to engage and thrive within education, employment and training.
- Rahab - Identifying, supporting and empowering anyone affected by sexual exploitation. It runs a night outreach for sex workers in the Oxford Road/Western Elms area and provides further daytime support.
- Engage - Reducing isolation and loneliness by developing positive relationships and networks in our community. This includes providing regular wellbeing support from a befriender.
PACT (Parents and Children Together) aims to support hundreds of troubled families every year through inspirational and award-winning community services across London and the Thames Valley. Community projects include Bounce Back 4 Kids, for young victims of domestic abuse and their families, and Alana House, an innovative women’s community project supporting vulnerable women with multiple and complex needs.
PACT also provides ‘Outstanding’ (Ofsted 2017) adoption services and specialist therapeutic support services.
Reading Community Welfare Rights Unit has been delivering a high quality specialist information and advice service in Reading since 1988 in the areas of Welfare Benefits & Housing.
Their service is free, confidential, independent and impartial.
Reading Mencap provides information, advice and citizen advocacy to support children and adults with learning disabilities and their families to help them overcome barriers, and lead a full and active life. Their outreach, case-working service of 5 Family Advisers, provides support with a wide variety of issues, including social care, charging for care, health, housing, benefits, preparing for adulthood, debt, hate crime, diagnosis and legal matters, and any issues which act as a barrier to good health and wellbeing.
Reading Refugee Support Group are committed to reducing poverty, suffering and the social isolation of people who have reached our country having already faced unimaginable persecution and hardship.
RRSG run both drop-in advice sessions and client appointments. They also run English language classes and a children’s homework club, and they participate in and contribute to various cultural events throughout the year.
Reading Voluntary Action promotes strength within Reading’s voluntary and community sector by providing information, access to resources, volunteer recruitment and training to people who work in or with charities, community groups and voluntary organisations. They support voluntary sector representation on cross-sector partnership initiatives in Reading.
RVA's Social Prescribing service links people aged 16 and over to the activities and support offered by Reading’s voluntary and community groups, empowering people to improve their health and wellbeing. Their Social Prescribing Link Workers help people to identify what matters to them, and how to connect with the community activities that might make a difference. RVA’s Social Prescribing team, in partnership with Age UK Berkshire, works with Primary Care Networks (PCNs) across Reading, taking referrals from GPs, and health and social care practitioners.
Stepping Forward offers support for people applying for DLA/PIP, throughout the process. We run one-to-one Advice Clinics where we help disabled people access essential resources and equipment. We also take this service into special schools and secure significant practical support for children with disabilities. This direct support to individuals and families addresses the impact of disability on social isolation, increased living costs, the need for specialist equipment and provides access to supported breaks.
The Berkshire West Carers Hub is operated by Tuvida and supports almost 2,000 carers and the people they care for across Reading, Wokingham and West Berkshire.
Through the Carers' Hub they offer a series of services to make caring for a loved one easier through information and advice, support groups and respite care breaks.
YMCA in Reading's aim is to empower young people and build stronger communities. Our primary service is to provide quality supported accommodation to 40 of Reading’s most vulnerable 16-25 year olds who would otherwise be homeless. We also offer alternative learning in our Workshop to young people who have difficulties in a traditional classroom environment. We run the Parkside Pre-School and Parkside Café, providing vital resources for the local community, and in addition, we run the YMCA Reading Sports Centre and the Padworth Activity Centre. Both are used by a variety of sport and social groups for a wide range of activities.