News release from 10/09/2019

Local groups open Community Chest

Local groups open Community Chest

Several local groups are sharing thousands of pounds in grant funding from South Cambridgeshire District Council’s Community Chest scheme.

The Community Chest targets funds at local grass-roots projects that benefit those residents most in need. Groups can apply for up to £1,000 in funding. The Council has funded the Community Chest scheme since 2011, handing out more than £500,000 in grants to local good causes in that time. The scheme focuses on village groups and projects that help to build a sense of community, and those that work to reach people who are lonely or socially isolated.

At the latest meeting of the Council’s Grants Advisory Committee (on Friday 30 August) it was recommended that the latest grants are awarded to:

  • Melbourn Mobile Warden Scheme – which will receive £835 to pay for the catering of 50 meals at a Celebrating Ages event
  • Duxford Preschool – which will receive £1,000 to help pay for a training workshop for staff to work in a new way
  • Sustainable Cottenham – which will receive £610 to help pay for Sunday social events

Chair of Sustainable Cottenham Christine Ward said: "We’re delighted and grateful to receive this grant which will help us put on our first few ‘Cottenham Connected’ Sunday Socials – starting Sunday 15 September at 2pm at the British Legion Hall on the High Street. We hope residents will find them enjoyable whilst meeting new friends and sharing skills and conversation. And there’ll be cake! If the Sunday Socials prove popular we hope to extend the range of 'Cottenham Connected' activities so that even more residents of all ages will have an opportunity to enjoy the benefits of feeling part of a lively community such as Cottenham."

Green countryside around the Fleam Dyke and Roman Road

After the previous meeting of the Grants Advisory Committee earlier this summer (July), grants were also awarded to:

  • Meldreth Village Trust Hall – which received £880 to go towards replacing the stage light with energy-efficient alternatives
  • The George Long Charity for Swavesey Memorial Hall – which received £1,000 to pay for transforming a derelict piece of land into a remembrance garden
  • Cottontails Preschool in Girton – which received £648 towards the purchase of equipment to promote intergenerational and environmental learning
  • Wilbrahams’ Youth Group – which received £611 to buy New Age Kurling kit

Other good local causes that have been provided with Community Chest funding this year include Friends of the Roman Road and Flaem Dyke (pictured above), Sheddit! Men’s Sheds, Haslingfield’s Little Owls Preschool, Ladybird Preschool in Cottenham and Mother Goose Preschool in Barrington.

The Chair of South Cambridgeshire District Council’s Grants Advisory Committee, Cllr Jose Hales (pictured - below left), said: “All of these projects do very valuable work in their communities and it’s excellent that these small grants help them to continue to make a positive difference. The benefits of the funding that we recommended at our meeting will be felt by lots of people because two of the grants will go directly towards bringing communities together for social events. This Community Chest scheme is a fantastic way of providing valuable funding to local community and voluntary groups.”

Councillor Jose HalesCouncillor John Williams

The Council’s Lead Cabinet Member for Finance, Cllr John Williams (pictured - above right), added: “I was pleased to sign-off on all of these grants because they all support excellent local good causes. We’re committed to being a modern and caring Council and our Community Chest scheme is a good way of showing this. Funding remains available so I’d urge groups to submit their bids now.”

Applicants to the Community Chest scheme can be non-profit groups or organisations based in South Cambridgeshire or benefiting the district’s residents. The community activity or project must achieve one or more of the following aims:

  • Help promote healthy and active communities
  • Enable inclusive communities
  • Develop skills
  • Enhance the natural environment

It must also meet a local need, leave a legacy for the community and ensure equality of access.

Projects or activities that may be funded could include improvements to community buildings, land or spaces, repairs to historic buildings, monuments or memorials, the purchase of equipment, materials or start-up costs. Groups can complete an application on the Community Chest section of our website.

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