Seven west Suffolk organisations have received a share of £45,000 from the county’s Working Together Fund Awards Programme.
The fund is financed by Suffolk County Council and managed by Suffolk Community Foundation, offering awards of up to £10,000 to charities, community groups and not-for-profit organisations.
It aims to support ‘working together initiatives’ where either community groups come together to make something happen for their community or where a group has promoted closer working with public and private sector organisations. Across the county, there were 12 recipients.
Honington and Sapiston Village Hall received £5,000 towards its project to replace its aging hall, which had no disabled access or facilities, with a purpose made new hall with all the features needed to serve its community.
Mid Suffolk Light Railway Museum also received £5,000, not just for preserving the history of the railway, but for the part it plays in the community. As Wetheringsett no longer has a pub, the railway’s ‘Coach Bar’ goes for monthly Village Bar Nights. The ‘Middy’ also hosts regular classroom visits and is the venue for Wetheringsett Victorian Christmas Fayre which donates profits to the friends of the village’s primary school.
Thetford based community interest company Unity in Diversity received £2,000 for its work bringing together Elveden and Barnham Primary Schools for a project on the life and times of Maharaja Duleep Singh, who moved to Elveden Estate in 1863, which earned the pupils an Arts Discover Award.
Unity in Diversity aims to broaden understanding of diversity, race, culture and ethnicity, by reaching and reconnecting communities.
Suffolk West Citizens’ Advice Bureau, which is based in Bury St Edmunds, received £5,000 towards its Rural MoneySmart project.
The initial aims of the project were to provide community financial capability training via established rurally located groups to increase money management skills using fun, interactive sessions it developed.
Home-Start Suffolk has been awarded £10,000 to help it in expanding its services across the county. Three existing schemes which have, until recently, provided volunteer based family support to families with children aged up to 11 in vulnerable families in Mid Suffolk, Babergh and Suffolk Coastal with parts of Ipswich, started working in partnership in 2014 to provide a Suffolk-wide community family support service.
Hundon Hedgehogs has been providing pre-school facilities in the village for more than 50 years but last summer approached the village hall about using a large storage cupboard and little used committee room as a semi-permanent pre-school that could stay set up all the time, as well as turning the outside area into a garden they could use.
Volunteers spent the summer holidays transforming the area and now have a £5,000 award to help with costs.
Castle Manor Academy in Haverhill has restored an orchard as an outside classroom, by pruning trees, identifying and labelling apple varieties, putting up a summerhouse and planting 1,500 wild flowers. Soay sheep ‘mow’ the grass and there is a fenced area for chickens.
The academy received £5,000 towards the project which is teaching students, staff and the community about creating wild spaces, horticulture and small-holding skills.
Cheques were presented to the organisations by Sarah Stamp, Suffolk County Council’s cabinet member for communities.
Cllr Stamp said: “It inspired me and fired me up because it showed me there are some fantastic community projects in Suffolk and some very good examples of collaboration.
“If anyone thinks they have a project that might qualify, the second round of funding is open for people to apply.”
To apply visit http://suffolkcf.org.uk