On Monday 10 January the South East Midlands Local Enterprise Partnership’s (SEMLEP’s) Community Grants programme opened for the final round of applications, providing grants to organisations which help local people get back into work or training.
The Community Grants programme offers funding between £10,000 – £20,000 to projects that help people increase self-confidence and esteem, supporting inspiring projects that teach individuals key employability and work experience skills needed to shape their career.
To date, the programme has supported 80 projects, helping 288 people back into employment. Projects funded through Community Grants use tailored strategies and exist to empower individuals from the hardest to reach communities. For example, in Luton, the Society for the Advancement for Black Arts’ (SABA’s) project created a truly inspiring and exciting gaming initiative to support participants unleash their hidden creative talents and eliminate barriers to employment. COVID-19 has presented an employment landscape never seen before, and projects such as these are imperative to increase employment rates amongst less privileged groups in the South East Midlands.
Gayle Parker, Operations Manager at SEMLEP, said “The Community Grants programme provides the perfect opportunity for VCSE organisations to supplement their operations. This enables the delivery of unique projects designed to help people get back into work or further training. It’s been fantastic to work with so many projects during the programme, seeing an inspiring impact across the South East Midlands. I look forward to seeing the innovative applications received in our final round of funding.”
Becky Thornton, Development Manager at Voluntary Impact Northamptonshire, said “Voluntary Impact Northamptonshire are very pleased once again to be involved in offering application support to organisations applying for SEMLEP Community Grants. We would encourage any eligible organisations to apply for this final chance for funding.”
To date, the programme has awarded £1,542,543 to 80 projects. Organisations interested in applying for funding should visit the SEMLEP website to express their interest: www.semlep.com/community-grants/.
The Community Grants programme is delivered by SEMLEP, and supported by Voluntary Impact Northamptonshire, European Social Fund (ESF) and the Education Skills Funding Agency (ESFA).