29/08/2014 - Permalink

£20,000 is available for community projects in the Bridgnorth and Oswestry areas – and you can have your say on how it’s spent

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£20,000 is available for community projects in the Bridgnorth and Oswestry area – and one woman is happy to help grant the funds.

Ann Maltby, is one of two tenant chairs of Shropshire Towns and Rural Housing’s Area Panels who decide on applications to the Community Chest. So far the two panels have approved over £7,000 for a host of various projects and both Ann and her counterpart in Oswestry, Mel, are excited to see more community projects benefit.

But their search is going even wider, with both of the panel chairs looking for new faces to join them, as Ann explained:

“We’re looking for people who are active in their communities and care about making them better places. It really is a worthwhile and rewarding role, with only a relatively small commitment. Full support and training can be given and transport to and from meetings is provided. We are a friendly group doing some really exciting work and we want more to join us.”

The decision making panels are made up of fellow tenants and leaseholders, with background support from Shropshire Towns and Rural Housing (STAR Housing) to help make the most of the funds. Funding has already aided several local primary schools, Broseley Netball Club and it has supported projects to aid those with mental health issues and the panel are searching for even more worthy causes to support. Steve, from Oswestry Community Alcohol Partnership, received funding earlier this year and said:

“The funding that we received for our project will make a real difference to young people who don’t currently have access to any leisure activities. It’s a great start for this exciting venture”

Down in Bridgnorth, Sylvia and the Greenfields Residents Association received funds to help with improve their gardens.

“I’m so glad that we applied to the Community Chest fund.”

Sylvia said, before continuing.

“We used this and match funding from the Local Joint Committee to get some garden furniture which has brought a new lease of life to the communal garden at our sheltered scheme. Residents can now sit outside in comfort, which has increased the amount of time that they spend outside of their flat. The process was simple and we received plenty of support to fill in the short application form.”

The deadline for the next funding cycle is Tuesday 30 September 2014, with decisions being made at the end of October, so there is still time to get your applications in.

If you are interested in joining Ann and Mel as one of the panel members or would like to apply to them for funding, you can call Lauren or Emma for an application form or more information on 01743 210 205 or email involvement@starhousing.org.uk