VOLUNTARY and community groups are invited to apply for funding from Cambridge City Council’s Community Grants Fund to help run projects that will tackle social and economic inequality in Cambridge – and for 2023-2024 a new Small Grants Scheme has been launched to make it easier to access smaller amounts, up to £2,000.
Groups can apply to the £1 million fund for any amount. There is no minimum, and historically some groups have been awarded tens of thousands of pounds. But for those groups looking for smaller amounts, the new Small Grants scheme will make it easier to access the funding needed to run much-needed activities.
To be eligible for the Community Grants Fund, activities need to support the council’s commitment to furthering social and economic equality across the city. The types of activities that could be eligible include:
- helping people to be more active
- widening access to arts and culture
- bringing communities together
- reducing poverty
- reducing social isolation and loneliness.
The council is urging groups that have not previously applied for funding to get in touch and has offered to support new applicants to complete the application process, including advising groups about any eligibility requirements, such as on how to become a formalised group.
Cllr Mairéad Healy, Executive Councillor for Equalities, Anti-Poverty and Wellbeing, said: “We know that Cambridge has some of the highest income disparities in the UK, with the successes of our local economy masking the very real levels of poverty that also exist within the city. I’m pleased that we are able to make funding awards for activities that will work towards tackling this inequality.
“In recent years we’ve seen more than ever the benefits of working together with voluntary and community groups and partner organisations to support local people. We recognise that those working at the heart of our communities are often best placed to meets the needs of our residents, so I would encourage groups with links in local communities to apply for funding to support your ideas and projects for next year.
“The Small Grants element is new for 2022 and we’re running it as a trial with a streamlined online application form. We hope the simpler application form will encourage applications from new groups and those who might have felt the application process was too difficult in the past. If you’ve never applied for this sort of funding before and would like some guidance on completing the application, just drop the team an email and they will be happy to help.”
The £1 million Community Grants Fund is one of three funds that have launched today (2 August). The following funds are also available for 2023-2024:
- £300,000 to tackle homelessness and rough sleeping in Cambridge. Grants must demonstrate value for money and applicants must show how the grant will prevent or relieve homelessness.
- £30,000 through the Sustainable City Grant, to support activities that will help achieve the council’s Climate Change Strategy 2021-2026 objectives by reducing carbon emissions and waste, increasing the use of sustainable transport and access to sustainable food, and improving preparedness and resilience to the impacts of climate change.
Each fund has detailed eligibility criteria. The closing date for applications for all three funds is 3 October 2022. The funding must be used for activities that will take place between 1 April 2023 and 31 March 2024. Awards will be considered by councillors in January and are subject to the council’s budget being approved at the full council meeting in February. Successful applicants will be paid grants from 1 April 2023.
Further information on all the funds is available on our grants and funding webpage. Alternatively potential applicants are encouraged to email firstname.lastname@example.org for further information or guidance.