In 2005 a Parish Plan was drawn up for Chidham and Hambrook. It identified the need for volunteers to help with social and environmental issues in the villages. Among these requirements was the need to help elderly people and others with mobility problems and so FINCH was born.
The name FINCH was chosen being an acronym for Friends in Nutbourne, Chidham and Hambrook and a small bird was chosen as the emblem. A number of volunteers set up a Committee and with the assistance of Chichester District Council, FINCH became a working group in the area.
People wishing for assistance could contact a dedicated FINCH mobile phone held by a member of the Committee. To give confidence to those using the service, all volunteers would live locally and have been DBS Checked.
So, FINCH became a community group aiming to bring people together and to befriend those members of the local community who needed support. On 28 October 2008, FINCH received the Chichester District Council Small Sparks Project of the Year Silver Award. FINCH continues to offer practical assistance and remains a not-for-profit organisation.
The tasks undertaken by the, currently fifteen, willing volunteers vary considerably. The principal requests are for lifts to and from doctors, hospitals and opticians. Other tasks have included help in filling in forms, changing light bulbs, taking down curtains, reading inaccessible meters.
Coffee mornings and social outings are arranged each year and an interesting speaker, or speakers, are invited to give a presentation after the business part of the Annual General Meeting.
The magic number to contact FINCH is 07775-942399.
Chairman of FINCH.