Grants Support City’s Community Groups
Gloucester City Council’s commitment to making the most of community assets and supporting residents to identify and solve local issues has been backed by more than £120,000 in grant funding over the past year.
Since April 2020 the Gloucester Voluntary and Community Sector has received a total of £124,473.80 for a variety of projects and initiatives, many of them to support the community effort during the pandemic.
The grants are in keeping with the Council’s policy of Asset Based Community Development that supports communities to recognise their own strengths and to be active in creating local solutions which meet the ambitions of local people.
Grants that were distributed include those given to advice agencies such as the Citizen’s Advice Bureau who provide advice to residents.
While over £22,000 was given to local projects through the Councillor Community Fund that enables councillors to support community led projects within their own wards.
In addition, the annual seed funding from Gloucester Lottery, a weekly online Lottery where local good causes can register to raise funds, was allocated to The Nelson Trust, which supports vulnerable women.
And in response to Covid 19, a new stream, the Covid Resilience Fund was set up to support the community response. It was allocated £50,000 by Gloucestershire County Council and £30,000 by Gloucester City Council.
Among the projects it funded was the adaptation of equipment so that visually impaired residents could stay connected, 5,000 masks to be given out to volunteers, activity packs for families and a community freezer to stock food for vulnerable families.
It saw £15,000 given to the Food Consortium so that almost 6,000 tonnes of food could be distributed to vulnerable residents across the city.
In addition, to help protect the community and to try to limit the spread of the Covid 19 virus, a Covid Compliance Fund was set up with £25,000 to encourage and support communities with measures to aid understanding of the regulations.
For example, Together in Matson ran a t-shirt and poster campaign, to raise awareness of how people could protect themselves.
And a £10,000 Covid Recovery Fund was also set up to support those who might be facing financial troubles due to the pandemic. It was aimed at community groups, grassroots organisations and community centres to cover lost revenue from premises hire or cancelled fundraising activities.
Councillor Jennie Watkins, cabinet member for Communities and Neighbourhoods, said: “Our Community and Voluntary groups are vital and valued partners and have been essential in helping thousands of people with extra support during challenging times.
“We believe that our residents and local community groups and organisations are often in the best position to be able to get involved with their communities to address most issues, and I am pleased we have been able to champion and support our communities to thrive with a range of financial and practical support.”