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Making lives better in 2015

December 17, 2015
Wales Director John Rose

Wales Director John Rose

Big Lottery Fund Wales’ director John Rose describes his highlights of the year:

“This year we made two important announcements: we launched our Strategic Framework, which outlines our vision for how we will work with communities over the next six years and we announced our funding priorities for Wales.

And during 2015, we have distributed around £100,000 a day in Wales to support the aspirations of people who want to make life better for their communities.

Not only that but we have launched new funding programmes including Community Asset Transfer 2 and Getting Ahead 2. We’ve refreshed our People and Places programme and we have also been working on a few new ones that are launching next year, specifically looking at rural poverty in Wales and the environment.

It’s difficult to choose personal highlights among so many great projects and pieces of work this year but here’s a few that spring to mind:

  • The 21st birthday of the National Lottery. Thanks to National Lottery players, the Lottery family in Wales – Big Lottery Fund, Heritage Lottery Fund, Sport Wales and Arts Council of Wales – has invested £1.5 billion into Welsh sport, arts, heritage, charity, health, education and environmental projects, changing lives for the better. National Lottery funding has a wide range of positive impacts on people.
  • Our award-winning Grab a Grant programme saw five community groups in north Wales sharing in £25,000. It was a partnership with the North Wales Chronicle and North Wales Pioneer which involved readers choosing the winning community projects through a public vote.
  • Twenty-three-year-old Simon Wakelin has a specially converted off road wheelchair to mow lawns at Skanda Vale Monastery in Carmarthenshire. He was born with Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy – a rare genetic disorder that makes his muscles waste away over time – and has been a patient at the Big Lottery funded monastery’s hospice for two years. Mowing the lawns is one of the ways Simon’s eases feelings of boredom and isolation. Read about it here.
  • Our small grants programme Awards for All continues to make a huge impact. Just last month Same But Different in Wrexham secured worldwide coverage after receiving £5,000 to raise awareness of children with rare diseases and syndromes.

There have been so many highlights this year and I’ve enjoyed working with Welsh communities to make sure good cause money continues to make an incredible difference.

In 2016 we will reach out to even more people and remember we really want to hear from you too so please get in touch if you have an idea that will help make a positive difference in your area.

Thank you for your continued support and merry Christmas and a happy New Year.”

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