As well as running our own groups and classes, other organisations rent space from us to run their services from the centre. You too can rent a room from us, either as a one off or on a weekly basis; big rooms like The Shed or small rooms like the Family Room - see Room Hire. The other organisations that run an office or group complement the centre in some way. The Citizens Advice Bureau offers advice on anything from debt to unfair dismissal, and Battens, the solicitors, run a fortnightly legal clinic here. The midwives will see you through pregnancy and the health visitors will help you and your child through the early years. These are all important services to the community, supporting those that need them.
Don't forget the CAT bus, a vital service if you don't have a car or can't drive whilst you are recovering from an operation perhaps. It will pick you up from home and drop you back again. Check out the information on how to register for the service.
And then we have our gardens, run and managed by The Growing Space, our sister charity, helping people with anxiety or mental distress learn to cope through horticulture.
The Centre has a wonderful range of rooms that are available to hire, from the large and light Shed to small consulting rooms, all with access to Wi-Fi. Each room has hand sanitiser, wipes and disinfectant spray, and we have screens you can use for meetings.Whether you are looking for a venue for a conference or children's party, or if you want to hire our kitchen for demonstrations or classes, then call us to discuss it. 01963 31842.
Take a look at the rooms we have to offer:-
Our largest room, with wooden floors and plenty of light, this is the perfect room for conferences, large meetings and parties.
A small room, with a desk and chairs. (The room is about to be redecorated so a photo will be up soon!). This is the perfect room for a one-to-one or small meeting.
Another large and light room overlooking the gardens with a toilet and a utility room attached, where folding tables are stored.
This is our wonderful training kitchen, with 3 ovens and plenty of work-surface, it is a great place for catering classes. There is a large circular table on one side of the room making it another good meeting room. This area is carpeted so it is also quiet.
Next to the Shed, this room could be hired at the same time, giving you access to a small kitchen and cafe seating area.
This room is ideal for smaller meetings. There are 2 large tables that can be fitted together to create one large meeting table, and there are 3 smaller tables at the back, along with a public computer.
A small informal room, a good place for small family or informal groups to meet. There is a sofa and chairs, and toys for children to play with.
The room also has a table and chairs if you need to have a meeting with parents or carers with a child or children.
If you would like to run a class, course or meeting on a regular basis, or hire a room for a one-off event, come and talk to us, 01963 31842 or InfoREMOVEREMOVEREMOVE@REMOVEBalsamCentreREMOVE.REMOVEorgREMOVE.REMOVEuk
Telephone: 01963 34594
This very successful community transport scheme, based at the Balsam Centre has now been operating for many years in the Wincanton, Bruton and Castle Cary areas. The scheme operates a Ring and Ride door to door service for people who live in villages without transport or for those who are unable to access the normal bus service.
The service runs Monday to Friday from 0800 to 1800
For bookings and fare prices please call 01963 33864
Membership of the scheme costs £10 and the fares are very reasonable. Holders of bus passes travel at half price within our operating area.
The CAT bus are looking for mini bus drivers - head over to our Current Vacancies section for more details.
As well as the bus, CAT operate a social car scheme and are currently in desperate need of volunteer drivers to take people to hospital appointments out of the area. A mileage rate is paid to cover expenses and drivers are covered by the scheme’s insurance.
We are very aware that over 50% of Citizens Advice in Somerset clients have health conditions and/or disabilities. Between our 5 organisations we helped over 20,000 clients last year. For this reason we must exercise extreme care in minimising the risk of infection for our clients and for our staff and volunteers.
The advice by phone service in Somerset is very well established and part of our general offer. All our systems are in place for a team of home based and office based advisers who can help you.
There will be a limited number of face to face meetings at The Balsam Centre on Thursdays, 10am - 3pm. Booking is essential so please call 0808 278 7842 to book.
Clients can visit our respective websites for full details of their options or clients can call the advice-line: 03444 889 623
Each local Citizens Advice centre will appoint a daily lead responsible for dealing with clients in crisis and we will continue to make the Local Assistance Scheme available to those in crisis (Fuel, food, essential items). We will maintain close contact with local foodbanks and work with them to address any challenges as they arise.
West Somerset: www.westsomersetadvice.org.uk/
South Somerset: www.citizensadvicesouthsomerset.org.uk/
Getting outdoors and into nature is good for you! It has beneficial effects on health, both physical and mental, helping to reduce the impact of anxiety and depression.
The Growing Space is our sister charity, working in the gardens around the centre and in the vegetable and flower plots across the road. They grow flowers, fruit and veg, and tend the lovely gardens whilst helping people who are experiencing emotional difficulties. They also run activities to boost self confidence, and give training and support to people with learning disabilities.
If you want to find out more head over to their website, The Growing Space.
Do you love reading but cannot access the library due to poor health, mobility or caring responsibilities?
Somerset libararies have volunteers who are able to deliver books direct to your door for free! Our volunteers can also support you in accessing free e-Books, e-Audiobooks, and e-Magazines.
If you would like to learn more about this service which is available to all ages, or to arrange for us to deliver books to you, please ask about the Home Library Service at your local library or contact Kirsty Jenssen: telephone 07814 079831, email email@example.com
The health visitors for this area are based at the Balsam Centre, working with you as your child develops, on hand to offer advice and support in their Well Baby Clinic.
To talk to the health visitors or make an appointment, call 0300 323 0119. Appointments run on Wednesdays 10am - 11.30am.
Spark Somerset excited to announce the launch of Wellbeing South Somerset, their brand new website dedicated to promoting good health and wellbeing in South Somerset.
WELLBEING SOUTH SOMERSET features a huge directory of support groups, services and activities in South Somerset, as well as health-boosting self-management tools and tips.
It helps connect people with groups and services in their community that could support their health and wellbeing, from lunch clubs and walking groups, to condition-specific support groups, and even housing and debt advice.
Visit WELLBEINGSOUTHSOMERSET.ORG to find out more.
Do you have a group, service or activity that you would like us to include in the directory? Please email SUPPORT@SPARKSOMERSET.ORG.UK.
Counsillor Sarah Dyke is the South Somerset District Council's Portfolio Holder for Environment. As part of her role, she produces a monthy newsletter, Get SuSSed, where the Council will keep you in the know on all things linked to their Environment Strategy, with new recycling initiatives, courses and events, giveaways, and news on what's happening across Somerset.
To view the newsletters, follow this link.
Please come along to SIDAS's new monthly drop-in session at the Balsam Centre and speak to a qualified Domestic Abuse worker. First Tuesday of every month, 10am to 12pm.
SIDAS provide free and confidential advice on issues you may be struggling with as a result of domestic abuse and can offer support for ongoing situations involving domestic abuse.They can advise on a range of topics including housing, safety planning, children services and legal matters.
The main purpose of the Repair Café is to save resources. We throw away an immense amount of stuff unnecessarily. Somerset Waste Partnership now sends non-recyclable rubbish to an energy-from-waste plant in Avonmouth. This is better than landfill, but it still takes energy, fuel and time to collect and transport the rubbish there. The new product that might be bought as a replacement also takes raw materials, water, energy and time to manufacture with (depending on where and how it is made) pollution as a probable side effect.
A Repair Café can show us how things can be repaired and how we can actually enjoy the process as well as saving resources and money! At a Repair Café you can speak to someone who can talk you through the steps of making something work or wearable again. And if this is too much, the volunteers can even just repair it for you while you enjoy a cup of something and chat with someone else.
The Balsam Centre is an independent charity set up by local people for local people.
Whilst the work of the Centre is long term, funding for its projects and services is all too frequently short term.
It is largely thanks to help from a fund created by a legacy left by one person, that the Balsam Centre has been able to continue its mental health work over the last few years. The help that this has given hundreds of people is a permanent and living memorial to that person’s generosity.
If you are thinking of donating, have you considered becoming a Friend of the Balsam Centre? This is a commitment to regular giving of any amount, at any interval, by standing order, and even better, if you are a UK tax payer and you ‘tick’ to say so, we can claim another 25% on top of your donation to support the work of the Centre. Become a Friend here!
We have signed up to be a part of Give As You Live where you can raise money for us - just by shopping online in your normal way! All you have to do is click on the link, choose your charity - The Balsam Centre - and then create an account.
The site will ask for your name, email address and a password. You can choose your favourite shops, or just use their search bar to find the product you are looking for. When you buy in this way, the retailer will donate an amount to us, and you can see exactly what you have donated. This is a great way for people who would like to support us to do so whilst doing their normal online shopping! All the big retailers are there, Amazon, Ebay, supermarkets, and department stores. Happy Shopping! And thank you for supporting us!!
We have a Wonderful.org charity page where you can donate directly to The Balsam Centre, and Wonderful will collect the tax for us! Just click on the logo and you will be taken to the page for donations to Wincanton Community Venture, the official name for The Balsam Centre charity.
It is largely thanks to help from a fund created by a legacy left by one person, that the Balsam Centre has been able to continue its mental health work over the last few years. The help that this has given hundreds of people is a permanent and living memorial to that person’s generosity. A legacy to the Balsam Centre is also one of the simplest ways that you can help the practical work of the Centre.