Latest News

Please check back here every so often for our latest news and updates on what’s happening at Karis Neighbour Scheme. If you’d like to sign up for our e-newsletter you can click here. This is an electronic newsletter which comes out four times a year and updates on all our projects and news.


Last month we said goodbye to Dilip Patel, one of our Listening and Guidance Chaplains for Wellbeing. We are sad to see Dilip go and wish him all the best in the future. We have now appointed Alison Thompson as the new Chaplain for this service, maintaining our staff of four who are delivering this important mental health support.


In June we were amazingly fortunate to receive support from eight Trusts and Foundations, two businesses and a personal donation that has made a huge impact on our Children and Families Work, helping us to continue the baby bank work at a time when funding was becoming quite difficult for that particular service.  We are really grateful to everyone who continues to help our work, including this month Property for Kids, the CB & HH Taylor Trust, the Lord Austin Trust, Zurich Municipal, the GJW Turner Trust, the Albright Grimley Trust, Skipton Building Society, Warburtons Community Fund and the Harry Payne Trust.


Our May newsletter tells you all about our work over the last quarter – please have a look here!


We are over the moon to have been granted £99,000 by the Henry Smith Charity for our work at Ladywood Community Advice, for the next three years. This will assure continuation of much needed face-to-face welfare benefits advice to local residents, and help with tribunal representation. We thank the Henry Smith Charity for its generous support, the impact of which will be felt by so many people in need across this community.


We are grateful to Hortons Social Purpose Committee who have funded our Children and Families Work (CFW) and Men’s Space projects. CFW has seen a significant increase in referrals over the past year so this support is incredibly valuable to help us continue to meet the pressing needs of local families.  Men’s Space is now fully up and running, with three activities now well under way – a Board Games club, Table Tennis and an allotment (with a second on the way) – these take place weekly in three locations and have been well received and attended.  We thank Hortons for its generous support of our work.


We have received 30 applications for our Chaplain for Wellbeing role, and interviews will be held the week of 13 May.


We are so pleased to have been awarded just under £10,000 by Ladywood Neighbourhood Network Scheme to extend our Men’s Space project. These funds will be used to help run our activities in Ladywood as well as those already up and running in Edgbaston.

We have also been awarded £1000 by Richard Kilcuppe’s Trust for our Children and Families Work. Thank you.


Our latest newsletter is out – find out what we’ve been up to here!


We have been very busy making funding applications for our work, in particular for our Ladywood Community Advice service and Men’s Space, our newest project which aims to reduce isolation for men over 50 in Edgbaston and Ladywood.  If you are interested in learning more about these projects and/or helping to fund either, please do get in touch with us at


Over the Christmas period we encouraged our staff and supporters to help us raise money by using EasyFundraising. This is a fantastic scheme, easy to sign up to, and means that for participating retailers donate a small amount of your purchase to your nominated charity. We signed up to it in November and have already raised £326.35 through the scheme. If you’d like to help support us in this way, just sign up at EasyFundraising.





We welcome in the new year with gratitude for recent donations towards our work from the PHP Fund (via Heart of England Foundation), ArmacMartin and the WED Charitable Trust, totalling £5,750. These funds will support our Ladywood Community Advice project, Children and Families Work and our core costs respectively.  Thank you to all who support us.


We are delighted to have received £2000 from the Grimmitt Trust, and £1000 from Baron Davenport’s Charity. Both of these awards will support our Children and Families Work and are very much appreciated.


We have just received a three year grant from the Sheldon Trust, to support our Ladywood Community Advice Project. This provides £3,000 per year and is very much appreciated. Supporting this work allows us to continue to provide expert face to face welfare benefits advice services to the local community at a time when the cost of living is bringing new challenges to households. We are extremely grateful to the Trust for its support.


Thank you to the Cooperative Bank Customer Donation Fund, who have just agreed to support our Baby Bank Club with a £600 gift towards provision for this new project.  Baby Bank Club is open to local families on low incomes and offers nappies and formula at 50% RRP to members of the Club. Members pay a subscription fee of £1.25 for six months’ provision. All money goes back into buying stock. We also sell some clothes for older children (quality used) which are 20p an item.


Our latest newsletter for Autumn 2023 is out now and can be found here!


We were very happy to receive a Winter Food Aid Fund disbursement from Birmingham City Council amounting to £5,000. Although aimed at food banks, this fund also covers provision of formula and nappies so we applied for funding towards our baby bank provision. We are grateful for this support at a time when demand is very high. If you’d like to support our baby bank please get in touch with



Our Barn Dance tickets are now on sale – you can buy them at Ticket Tailor, priced at £11 each which includes a small booking fee for the online hosting.  Karis will receive £10 per ticket towards its work.

We’re looking forward to a great evening of dancing with food provided by our friends at CanEat and music from the Mucky Duck Band – we hope to see you there!



Thank you to the WE Dunn Trust who are supporting one of our clients with a sofa purchase, Asda Foundation who have donated money towards our Baby Bank provision and the IM Properties Fund (Heart of England Foundation) who are supporting our Ladywood Community Advice project.  This is absolutely fantastic and we are grateful to all for their support.


We’re starting to plan for a fundraising BARN DANCE! Watch this space!


Thank you to the Morrisons Foundation and the Blakemore Foundation, both of whom have supported our Baby Bank and Baby Bank Club this week with contributions that will help us to provide nappies, formula, toiletries and other much needed baby essentials for the families we support!


We are delighted to have received funding from the Birmingham and Black Country Communities Fund (Heart of England Foundation) for our new Men’s Befriending Project!



Our Annual Report and accounts for 2022 are now out. The Annual Report features all of our projects with stories of the people we work with, and information about the extent and breadth of our support work. You can find out more by downloading it on our ‘Resources’ page.


Our Summer newsletter is out now – you can read this here.


We are advertising two new posts – Men’s Befriending Project Worker and Listening and Guidance Social Prescriber – details can be found on our ‘Vacancies’ page. Please share with your networks or pass on to anyone suitable that you know! We are grateful to The Hinchley Trust and Edgbaston NNS for their support for these posts.


We are extraordinarily grateful to have received support from the Hinchley Trust for our Listening and Guidance service, which offers mental health support to patients at seven local general practices.  This work is more in need than ever as we deal with the after effects of the pandemic, as well as the day to day challenges that people are experiencing with living costs.  Thank you.


We have celebrated the Coronation of His Majesty King Charles III with parties for all our groups – photos will follow in our newsletter! If you’d like to subscribe please contact us at


We were delighted to host a visit from representatives of the Hortons Social Purpose Committee earlier in the year, who were interested in learning more about our Children and Families Work. This resulted in an application for funds which was successful and we are delighted to have been awarded this valuable support. Thank you.


Edgbaston Neighbourhood Network Scheme (NNS) has granted us support for our new Men’s Befriending Project – thank you! This project will offer tailored befriending to isolated men over the age of 50 in the local area.  We will advertising in due course for a project lead for this work – watch this space!


Thank you to Warburtons Families Matter scheme who have agreed to provide £400 funding for our Baby Bank work this year!


Late last year we were successful in being put through to the Tescos Community Grants scheme, with votes from three branches being cast for our project as well as others.  We are very pleased that we have been awarded £500 from this scheme and thank all of you who voted for us with your green tokens!


Our Spring newsletter is out now – see here. Read about our Christmas activities, and find project updates about all our work, as well as new staffing news!


We welcomed our new Finance and Operations Officer, Victoria Yates, who starts with us this month and will help to refine and maintain our finance processes, a very valuable and supportive role – we are very pleased to have her with us!


Our work is supported by many generous charities and individuals, for which we are grateful. These include: the Arnold Clark Community Fund, Lord Mayor of Birmingham’s Charity, the Alan Edward Higgs Trust, the GJW Turner Trust, South Birmingham Friends Institute, the CB and HH Taylor Trust, the Harry Payne Fund, George Henry Collins Trust, AFIA, the Grimmitt Trust, George Fentham Trust, Richardson Bros, LoveBrum, Tescos Community Grants, the W A Cadbury Trust, the Saintbury Trust, Garfield Weston Foundation and Henry James Sayer Trust.  We also thank all those individuals who send cash donations or help support the Baby Bank through donations of equipment and baby goods.

Our first Crowdfunder!

We launched our first Crowdfunder to help support Karis Baby Bank – if you’d like to support us in this way please have a look at our appeal here, where you can see our lovely Children and Families Worker talking about our work, and how you can help.


We have been lucky enough to be selected as a featured project by LoveBrum whereby readers vote for one of three projects they wish to support. We are delighted to say we won first prize of £2000, which goes towards supporting our Children and Families Work!

Newsletter – October 2021

In this issue we focus on our supporters – who they are, and why they support us (in their words!) – funders, individuals, charities and our all important volunteers.  Read more here.


This summer we have welcomed colleagues from Zurich Municipal Trust (Birmingham branch) who have volunteered with us and provided some resources for clients of Baby Bank.  The volunteers came into the office to learn about the work of our baby bank, and then helped to organise donations by sorting and bundling clothes for clients.  They also very kindly provided £500 worth of toiletries, pyjamas and slippers for expectant mums in lovely gift bags – these will be given out through the remainder of the year.


Dr Robert Chesner at Karis Medical Centre took part in a half Ironman in Wales on 18 June, raising funds for Amnesty International and Karis Neighbour Scheme in memory of his grandma Betty, and raised over £1300 for Karis. We are very grateful and Rob is still recovering!

Many of you will know that KNS was born from an idea by one of the GPs at Karis Medical Centre, so we were delighted to be one of the beneficiaries of Rob’s great efforts!  Rob says “Grandma Betty was kind, selfless and an advocate for human rights, equality and opportunity for all. I know she will be smiling at the thought of much needed money and resources being provided for both KNS and her beloved Amnesty.”

Newsletter – June 2021

Catch up with the celebratory event we held for our volunteers on a lovely summer’s day in June, and the rest of Karis news here!


Find our latest newsletter here to catch up on how we’ve been re-starting lots of our activities and all the latest news from KNS.


A big welcome to some of our new staff who have started in the past few months, Katharine Harris joins us as our Karis BeFriends Advice worker, Hannah Eno has taken on our Fundraising role and Chris Shurrock has joined us most recently as our Finance & Operations Co-ordinator.


We’re pleased to announce Harry Naylor has taken on the post of CEO, moving from his Operations & Finance Manager role. We are now recruiting for a Finance & Community Co-ordinator, closing date for applications 17th September. More details about the post can be found here. If you or anyone you know would be interested please do  contact for more details.


Farewell and a huge thank you to Maddy Bunker as she comes to the end of her time here at Karis as CEO. Our thanks in particular for leading us through what has been a challenging year and a half with COVID-19.

Newsletter – May 2021

You can find our latest newsletter – including details of recruitment for our CEO post and a role with the Kickstart scheme for 16-25 year olds, as well as information about our Listening & Guidance service, including details of our recruiting a new Chaplain for Wellbeing here. If you’d be interested in finding out more about the post please email Michaela at

Newsletter – October 2020

See our previous newsletter here and read about how we’re continuing to adapt our work to the challenges presented by COVID-19

Newsletter – September 2020

See our previous newsletter here and read about how we’re continuing to adapt our work to the challenges presented by COVID-19.


Another update on our work during the current COVID-19 outbreak can be found here.

Newsletter – March 2020

Please see our previous newsletter here for details of what we’re doing in response to the COVID-19 outbreak, we are still here and looking to support the most vulnerable in our community during this time.