Funding to boost vital work of community and voluntary groups
Over £2.1 million of funding from Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council will support a wide range of different activities, projects and facilities led by community and voluntary sector groups to benefit residents of all ages in the coming year.
Grant schemes due to be launched over the next three months will give organisations working to help people and enrich lives in their local areas the chance to apply for funding from the council to support what they do.
The Cost of Living Community Fund is now open to provide financial assistance to not-for-profit organisations delivering support services to residents affected by the rising cost of living, with £95,000 available, part-funded by UK Government through the UK Shared Prosperity Fund.
The Strengthening Communities Grant, which will launch after April with a total pot of £188,000, will enable organisations to apply for funding to support them to become more resilient to better meet community needs, including helping them run more efficiently, bring in more income and increase their volunteer base.
The new Community Infrastructure Fund, which will launch for the first time in May with a total pot of £300,000, will enable community and voluntary sector organisations to apply for grants of up to £50,000 to make physical improvements to their facilities to improve the user and resident experience or make environmental enhancements.
The Pride in Place Fund will provide £80,000 in grants to local community and voluntary sector organisations and groups in the borough to support them to deliver activities and projects that will enhance the living environment and quality of life for residents in their areas. This scheme is funded by the UK Government through the UK Shared Prosperity Fund.
The Streets Alive Plus project will provide a total of £36,000 to enable parish and town councils and community groups to work with local artists to create two pieces of public art for each ward of the borough. This builds on the success of Streets Alive that brought artwork to benches, planters and other items in Basingstoke town centre.
After the elections in May, all 54 councillors will be given £2,000 each to provide grants to help groups and not-for-profit organisations to purchase equipment that will make a difference to people’s lives and help bring communities together.
The council has also been allocated Rural England Prosperity Fund money to support rural infrastructure development and will be using this to launch a grant scheme, with £110,000 available in the coming year. This will allow community and voluntary sector organisations and businesses in the rural parts of the borough to help make improvements to village and town centre public areas and community facilities and enhancements to green spaces to support biodiversity and sustainability.
All these grant schemes add to the £1.2 million of council funding that will support a range of community and voluntary sector partners in the coming year to provide activities and services that help to meet the council’s key priorities for residents and the borough. These include Citizens Advice Basingstoke and Tadley, Anvil Arts, Education Business Partnership South, Basingstoke Voluntary Action, Basingstoke Gym Club, Hampshire Cultural Trust, Proteus Theatre Company, Shopmobility, Whitchurch Silk Mill and Young People’s Independent Counselling.
Council Leader Cllr Simon Minas-Bound said: “Our very active community and voluntary sector is one of the things that makes the borough such a caring and vibrant place to live. We have a good track record of supporting communities to deliver services and activities tailored to their residents and local areas.
“The over £2 million of funding we will be providing in the coming year shows that this commitment is stronger than ever. It will support everything from vital advice and help for those struggling and activities to keep people of all ages active and healthy to providing equipment for local groups, upgrading community facilities and improving the look of local areas. This funding recognises those groups who strive to do so much for their communities.”
A full list of all funding and grants that communities will be able to apply for in the coming year is available at www.basingstoke.gov.uk/grants