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Council funds projects to help support vulnerable people

Grants of up to £10,000 have been awarded to 53 groups and organisations

SHIRE grants logo
Community groups have been supported by the SHIRE Grants fund

More than 50 charities and community groups have received a cash boost for projects which help vulnerable people in Leicestershire.

Leicestershire County Council has announced the latest recipients of awards from its popular SHIRE Community Grants.

The grants, of up to £10,000, have been awarded to a wide range of organisations.

They include:

  • An employment support project for young parents (awarded to Angels and Monsters)
  • Support for charities delivering money, debt and welfare advice to people experiencing financial hardship (awarded to Melton and District Money Advice Centre and Soar Valley Outreach)
  • Refurbishment of the Ukrainian Association’s centre to help provide services for children and families fleeing the war in Ukraine
  • Inclusive cycling sessions for people with disabilities (Leicester Wheels for All)
  • A homelessness hostel worker (awarded to Hinckley Homeless Group)
  • A new shed for an allotment project for adults with disabilities (awarded to Choices Allotment Club)
  • A rehabilitative support project for women recovering from breast cancer (awarded to Sue Young Cancer Support)
  • Operational running costs for foodbanks in Stoney Stanton, Coalville, Loughborough, Enderby and South Leicestershire
  • A social activities group for people with disabilities (awarded to Melton Mencap)
  • An arts and environmental project for vulnerable people in Blaby (awarded to Buzzing Roots CIC)
  • Adaptive sports sessions for young people with special educational needs and disabilities (awarded to Spectrum Sensory Sports UK CIC)

In all, more than £220,000 has been awarded from a pot of £600,000 made available by the county council.

Our SHIRE Grants programme continues to provide much-needed financial support for charities and community groups, to help them make a difference to the lives of so many people.

Our communities have had to deal with the lasting impacts of the Covid-19 pandemic, not to mention the cost of living crisis, which is making life hard for many of our residents. Our grants go some way to alleviating the pressures people are facing in challenging times, and we are keen to support more community projects, to expand on the excellent work they are already doing.

One of the recent SHIRE Grant recipients, Amanda Heath from Melton and District Money Advice Centre, said: “The funding has had a huge impact in helping us to ensure we have qualified debt advisor to work with the large numbers of clients coming through to us. We are seeing a huge increase in referrals every week and without our debt advisor posts being funded, we simply would not be able to cope with the demand for our services. We are humbled to be able to be part of the answer to local people at this time of national need.”

Another project which was awarded a SHIRE Grant is Choices4Life, a day centre which has been providing services for adults with learning disabilities since 2002. The service users recently formed an allotment club, and Glynis Middleton from the project said: “This has been a great opportunity for our members to be outdoors and learn about gardening and growing. They have already cleared the ground and planted a range of vegetables, which has been a great way for them to develop new skills and experiences.

“We are very grateful for the SHIRE Grant from Leicestershire County Council, as it will enable us to replace an old, dilapidated shed with a timber classroom. The service users are very excited about the project, and this will help to increase their knowledge of gardening and wildlife."

Funding applications for the SHIRE Grant programme can be made online. The deadline to make an application in the current round is Wednesday 7 September and enquiries can be made at shiregrants@leics.gov.uk, or by calling 0116 305 7020 or 0116 305 7269.

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