One in a Million: Martin Bennewith

Martin Bennewith is one in a million.

He’s one of the million people to benefit from the Steve Morgan Foundation Covid-19 Emergency Fund since it was launched in March 2020.

He’s an unpaid volunteer with RainbowBiz CIC, which was saved from closure after receiving £10,000 in emergency funding. Here’s his story.

Martin Bennewith is a self-confessed computer geek.

The 45-year-old, from Connah’s Quay in Deeside, first got in touch with the North Wales social enterprise about five years ago when he was at an especially low ebb.

“I’d been going through a period of anxiety when I first got in touch with RainbowBiz CIC,” he said. “They used to run a community cinema scheme. It was perfect for me because I’m a bit of a geek. 

“I work full-time for a bank and my involvement with RainbowBiz tends to fluctuate. I tend to work behind the scenes when they need help with their website or any technical issues. I love problem-solving.

“I feel part of a community through my involvement with RainbowBiz. You get to meet lots of people. RainbowBiz raises awareness about diversity issues. It’s fairly unique.” 

When Covid-19 struck RainbowBiz CIC was left facing a financial crisis after they were forced to close their Hippy Shop in Mold, which used to sustain the work of the social enterprise.

With no money coming in staff feared they would have to end their work until the Steve Morgan Foundation gave them a £10,000 ‘lifeline’ to help them through the worst of the crisis.

As a result RainbowCIC have been able to continue contacting members, including their weekly online social meet-up so people can socialise despite being housebound.

Martin said: “I’ve been able to take part in the Zoom chats during Covid-19. I live with my wife and daughter but we’ve not been out during the lockdown. The Zoom calls have been a good way of keeping in touch.”

Philanthropist and businessman Steve Morgan announced in March he would be giving up to £1m a week to charities in Merseyside, North Wales and Cheshire faced with a cashflow crisis as a result of Covid-19.

In the first eight weeks the Covid-19 Emergency Fund has made more than 400 awards to frontline charities and organisations – including RainbowBiz CIC – helping over one million people in the process.

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