As well as continuing to fund the development of and activity in outdoor spaces such as allotments and community gardens, grants will are now available for general community projects.

The types of projects funded will be very broad and will cover the direct costs needed to deliver the project, this could range from:

  • Purchasing items which will benefit local community groups such as sports kit, specialised medical equipment, art and crafts materials, spades, litter pickers, camping equipment.
  • Improvements to a building that benefits the local community such as a Scout or Guide hut, church or village hall, changing facilities for sports.
  • Developing an outdoor space play area, allotment, park, school grounds, woodland or wildlife area.
  • Running a community event or activity such as fun runs, village fete, clean-up day, tree planting, bird watch.
  • Supporting seasonal activities such as purchasing new Christmas lights, supporting a Christmas meal for the homeless or a Diwali celebration event for the community etc.

These are just some examples of projects that are now eligible as the green light will be given to many other schemes that meet the programme’s aims and objectives to fund projects which will benefit the local community.

To ensure that the programme is really local the number of projects funded every two months has been increased and there are new funding amounts – with £4,000, £2,000 and £1,000 up for grabs. You do not have to be near a Tesco's shop to apply. More information is available on the Groundwork website

Big Lottery Fund have revised and simplified their application form and guidance for the Reaching Communities programme to better reflect their Strategic Framework 2015 - 2021.

A key component of the new framework is their vision of 'People in the lead' and this runs through both the application form and guidance.

 

Big Lottery Fund's description of this in the guidance for Reaching Communities is:

People in the Lead 

We believe that the best way to improve communities is through harnessing and supporting the ideas, skills and energy of the people who live in them. Our ‘People in the Lead’ approach focusses on ensuring people are able to drive change in their community right from the start, and remain in the driving seat from design through to delivery. By doing this, our funding can help ensure that people and places are better prepared to make the most of their potential, and overcome the range of challenges they may face in the future.

 

Funding Priorities

Reaching Communities has new funding priorities, these are:

The most important thing is that you tell us what your ideas are for making positive change in your communities.We particularly want to hear about ideas that support:

  • Lasting and sustainable changes to places and spaces
  • Communities to develop happier and stronger relationships with each other
  • Taking action to focus on the root causes of social problems to tackle them at the earliest possible stage

Full details and the new stage one application form is available on the Big Lottery website. You are strongly encouraged to contact BIG Lottery on 0345 4 10 20 30 before starting an application.

 

Reaching Communities Buildings This stream of Reaching Communities funding will close at 5pm on 31/1/17. We anticipate that a revised buildings programme will launch in the near future.

To mark 300 years of the United Grand Lodge of England many celebratory events will be held across the country ranging from Thanksgiving Services, gala dinners to Teddy Bear Picnics and community events. 2017 will see a full year of donations by regional Provincial Grand Lodges throughout England & Wales to charities which operate in the local community.

The Provincial Grand Lodge of Northumberland, which stretches from Berwick upon Tweed, Haltwhistle in the west, Seahouses and Whitley bay in the east to Newcastle in the south is delighted to be part of these celebrations. We will be giving away thousands of pounds to local charities throughout 2017, in the hope this financial boost will help community projects throughout the region, increasing the hugely positive effect they have to peoples lives within the community.

If you are a local charity and would like to apply to be considered for a Provincial Grand Lodge of Northumberland donation, then please complete the form on the Northumberland Masons website

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