A NEW partnership has been created between businesses and voluntary organisations.

Halton Foundation was launched at Runcorn’s Heath Business Park on Wednesday.

Representatives from more than 60 businesses met to hear about ways they could develop better links with charities and give something back to the community.

Dozens of charities and voluntary organisations have a wide range of needs and wants and could potentially benefit from being put in touch with an appropriate business.

Halton firms heard how in-kind support, such as free professional advice, transport, equipment or website design, could be just as important as giving grants and fund-raising.

Halton Council chief executive David Parr, a keynote speakers, said: “The Halton Foundation will link individuals, businesses and organisations enabling individuals, families, companies, entrepreneurs, and charitable trusts to support Halton’s communities and grow prosperity.

“This could take many forms including funding, volunteering, donating goods and services, sharing expertise and providing in-kind support. It is a true partnership of the willing.”

The partnership will be led by Halton Chamber, Halton Council and Halton & St Helens Voluntary and Community Action, assisted by Cheshire Connect, Business in the Community, and Community Foundations for Lancashire and Merseyside.

Sally Yeoman, from Halton & St Helens Voluntary and Community Action said: “For us to ensure that local voluntary action continues to exist and support people in Halton, we need to think of new and creative ways of resourcing it.

“Our Halton partnership provides us with an exciting new way to do just that.”

The event was hosted by Halton Chamber of Commerce and Enterprise. It featured inspirational talks from Runcorn entrepreneur Richard Bamber who owns family coach company Anthony’s Travel and Chris Bliss, Liverpool One estate director.

Any business interested in joining can contact Halton Chamber chief executive Paula Cain by e-mail paula.cain@haltonchamber.co.uk.