Devon County Council to continue funding local community projects
Posted on: 9 March 2020
Devon County Council has contributed over £274,707 to local community projects across the county so far this financial year, and will continue to support local projects in 2020-21.
Three schemes, Doing What Matters, Crowdfund Devon Pilot and the Making the Connection fund, all support local projects and encourage community resilience and cohesion.
They aim to make communities stronger, more connected, active, safer and more inclusive allowing them to have more control and achieve the things that matter most to them in ways that they choose.
So far this year, £235,811 has been granted to causes that specifically tackle isolation and loneliness in communities across the county through the Doing What Matters scheme.
To date, 19 projects have been successful in securing a grant under this scheme, which provides grants of between £5k-£20k.
Projects that have been successful include CoLab Exeter, a project which supports vulnerable women with complex needs and includes mental health support and a range of other help and advice.
Another success story has been Action East Devon, who has used the funding to create a mental health support network for young people in Honiton, to help make the town ‘mental-health friendly’.
The Crowdfund Devon pilot has grown rapidly this year with over £14,250 being donated by the Council to 13 different projects through Crowdfund Devon. Since launching the pilot, we have pledged over £19,000, helping 21 projects, worth over £145,500, to achieve their aims. Details of the successful projects can be found on our Crowdfunder profile.
The online platform, run by Crowdfunder, allows community groups to easily set-up an online project and coordinate their fundraising activity in one place, making it accessible to more people. Currently, for every pound we invest in this way, £6.49 is attracted from the wider crowd of funders.
It also gives communities access to discretionary extra funding via Crowdfund Devon, which includes Devon County Council’s Community Chest scheme as well as funds from Devon and Cornwall Police, Exeter City Council, Torbay Council and five Devon District/Borough Councils (South Hams, West Devon, Torridge, Teignbridge and East Devon).
A wide variety of projects have been supported including a scheme to help clean Devon’s beaches, mental health initiatives, projects for young people and environmental causes, such as the Exeter Phoenix solar powered auditorium and the North Devon Biosphere’s Pledge for Nature.
There are also grants available through the Making the Connection fund, which allows smaller projects to access grants of up to £300.
So far, 84 applications have been supported this year alone from all over the county, with over £24,500 worth of funding provided by the Council.
A huge variety of projects have been supported including the Halberton pre-school library transformation, to Denbury’s signing choir and the North Devon Moving Image, which created short films about farming in the local area to educate communities.
Devon County Council leader John Hart said: “There are many projects in Devon benefiting local communities in lots of ways. They rely on funding, and we are delighted to support them. We have just agreed our budgets for the coming financial year, and are pleased to continue our support for local projects.”
Councillor Roger Croad, Cabinet Member for Communities said: “Community initiatives, like those we have supported with additional funding over this last year, are vital in Devon and will continue to make a positive impact on their community and the local area.”