New £1.5 million grant for Derbyshire community groups to be considered by county council

Derbyshire County Council's cabinet will discuss the new grant at their meeting next week.
Derbyshire County Council's cabinet will discuss the new grant at their meeting next week.

Clubs, community groups and charities in Derbyshire could benefit from extra grant funding under plans set to go before the county council next week.

If approved by the authority's cabinet at a meeting on Thursday April 5, a total of 2,000 action grants of £500 each would be offered up until January 31 2020 to local organisations with plans and projects that will benefit their local community.

A further £500,000 could also be made available for projects which aim to improve health and encourage physical activity.

Councillor Barry Lewis, Council Leader and Cabinet Member for Strategic Leadership, Culture and Tourism, said: “Making grants available to local community projects and groups is one of the clear commitments we have made in our Council Plan.

“If approved, the money would give Derbyshire residents the support and the freedom to bring real and lasting benefits to the area where they live. It would help to provide a whole range of opportunities which really do bring people together through activity and make our county a safer, healthier place to live.”

• Youth Activity Grants would be available to help 11 to 19-year-olds by setting up projects like youth clubs and arts and music schemes, as helping young people to enhance their entrepreneurial and employment skills.

• A number of enhanced youth activity grants would be available for work which helps vulnerable young people at risk of sexual exploitation or radicalisation, or who are struggling to find jobs and training opportunities.

• Community Safety Grants would aim to help Derbyshire people to reduce the fear of crime in their communities, address the causes of anti-social behaviour, combat the effects of alcohol and drug abuse and help raise awareness of rogue traders, online fraud and scams.

• Community Action Grants would enable residents’ groups to give their area a boost by setting up new clubs, arranging events like fetes and protecting the local environment.

• Physical Activity grants would get communities moving together by funding innovative ways of improving access to sport and exercise

If the proposals are approved, in addition to the 2,000 small grants of up to £500, medium grants of up to £5,000 would also be available to new projects which have strong local support and can be shown to be able to bring significant community benefits.

Large grants of up to £10,000 would be offered to a new project which can be shown to provide long-term benefits and which may promote two or more of the scheme’s four themes – youth activity, community action, community safety and physical activity.

Decisions for the awarding of grants would be made by a panel with a detailed knowledge of youth, community and physical activity projects which are already available across the county.

Cllr Lewis added: “If cabinet approves the proposals, we would want groups of all kinds to take advantage of this offer over the next two years. This money would be additional to other funding pots which our elected members can offer to projects and causes in their area.

“The people who understand the needs of their communities best of all are those who live there and who already volunteer to provide and organise activities there. If approved, they could use these grants to help make a real difference which will benefit others for many years to come.”

Derbyshire groups, organisations, charities and residents can sign up to an email newsletter for updates about the scheme by visiting the county council's website at www.derbyshire.gov.uk/action