Is a Community Hub and Warm Hub the same?
Warm Hubs launched in October 2022 in response to the cost of living crisis. Their intention was to offer a warm place for people to visit and socialise, breaking down barriers and offering companionship. The Hubs proved such a success that it was decided to continue to offer this community space beyond winter 2022 to 2023, so they were renamed Community Hubs to reflect their year-round use in our communities.
What is a Community Hub?
Community Hubs are friendly and inclusive places for all members of the community. They will be somewhere warm where people can go to enjoy the company of others, ideal if you are feeling lonely or cannot afford to heat your home.
Where are they being held?
Every community is different, so hubs are being held in different places, this might be a community room, a village hall or a church room. All hubs must be warm and without draughts. Cambridgeshire ACRE (external link) continues to facilitate the hubs on behalf of the Council, with a dedicated Facebook page (external link) packed full of activities and information.
What times are they running?
Each Community Hub is being run independently so they will be open at different times, depending on where they are being held and when the rooms are available.
How much does it cost to go to a Community Hub?
There is no cost to attend a Community Hub, however, some hubs may wish to offer additional benefits, like providing hot food or entertainment, and may ask for a contribution if you would like to take part.
How can I get there?
Community Hubs are being run in the local communities to help make them as easy to attend as possible. It is possible volunteers or people attending the hub will be able to offer transport options for people who want to attend but cannot get there. There is also the option of using community transport to attend if this is available in your area. More information about Community Transport.
Why isn't there a Community Hub in my village?
When Warm Hubs were launched, communities were asked to apply to Cambridgeshire ACRE to put themselves forward as a Hub. This was a voluntary option and some villages or communities did not apply, possibly because there isn't a suitable venue or enough volunteers to run the hub. Cambridgeshire ACRE have tried to ensure the hubs are accessible to as many people as possible.
Why have East Cambridgeshire got them but some other areas haven't?
East Cambridgeshire, South Cambs and Cambridge City councils joined together to bid for funding from the Integrated Care System, the healthcare providers in our local area. The bid was successful and each council received a share of the money. East Cambridgeshire and South Cambs are rural areas and jointly decided a good way to spend some of this money was to provide help in their local communities to tackle health inequalities, fuel poverty and concerns regarding the cost of living crisis. Owing to the rural nature we teamed up with Cambridgeshire ACRE to help identify, fund and support Warm Hubs directly in the local communities, to help local people. Other authorities may be running similar schemes in their areas.
Why would I leave my home in winter to go to a Community Hub?
Although you may have to leave your home when the weather is cold or wet, the benefit of visiting a Community Hub will probably outweigh braving the weather. A hub will be warm, it will be welcoming, it will be run by people in your own local area who care about their local communities, there will be hot drinks and possibly, depending on individual hubs, other refreshments. A hub will be somewhere to socialise, take part in activities and enjoy the company of others. For someone who is struggling to heat their home, or with loneliness, a hub will be a comforting connection with others.
I am worried about the cost of living, is there help at a Community Hub?
Yes, volunteers at Community Hubs receive training to help them provide guidance and support for people who are struggling financially, emotionally or with their health. Community Hubs will also be visited by organisations able to provide services and support in the local area, such as the Council, healthcare providers and professional advisers.
How long with they run for?
The first hubs opened their doors in October 2022 and the majority continue to welcome local residents as Community Hubs in 2023.