Grant scheme marks fifth birthday
Archived press release
Date Published: 27/06/12
A grant scheme that has benefited thousands of people throughout Aylesbury Vale is celebrating its fifth anniversary.
The Community Chest has been instrumental in the development of over 400 projects across the district, ranging from local events and activities for young people, community buildings and sports facilities, to voluntary sector support services for some of the district’s most vulnerable residents.
Aylesbury Vale District Council and the Vale of Aylesbury Housing Trust set up the fund in 2007 with a £5 million funding pot available for small not-for-profit groups and organisations to support their work and help build a strong and flourishing community within the district.
Since its inception, the community grants scheme has awarded £2.5 million in over 400 grants. It has also helped to lever in over £23 million of local fundraising and additional grants.
To mark the achievements of the scheme, 50 recent grant recipients will be attending a celebration event at the refurbished New Inn at Stowe on 27 June. The Community Chest awarded a grant of £15,000 towards the restoration of the historic Bennett Room (within the New Inn), to turn a derelict shell into a flexible and functional space for local community use.
Sir Henry Aubrey Fletcher, Lord-Lieutenant for Buckinghamshire, will be attending the event to present five awards to groups who have received Community Chest funding since 2007.
Councillor Pam Pearce, Cabinet Member for Community Matters, said: “We have some fantastic community groups in Aylesbury Vale who do a lot for their local area, often with very little money, and we're delighted to support them through this grant scheme. Community Chest grants have made a real difference to the services offered by these groups and it's been wonderful to see the projects local people have set up or expanded across the district as a result of our funding. We look forward to the next five years being just as successful.”
Matthew Applegate, Chief Executive of the Vale of Aylesbury Housing Trust, said: “The motivation for setting up the Community Chest came from a commitment to improve the lives of local people. For us, this is more than just providing homes, it’s about a long term investment in our communities. Five years on, it is fantastic to see the impact that it has had across the Vale and to celebrate this important milestone with some of the grant recipients.”
A variety of different Community Chest grants are available, from microgrants up to £1,000, to larger project grants of up to £25,000. The deadline for the next round of project grants is 20 July.
For more information about the grant fund, visit www.aylesburyvaledc.gov.uk/communitygrants or call 01296 585634.