John Rose, Wales Director gives a snapshot of our work over the last twelve months and looks forward to what is yet to be another busy year for The National Lottery Community Fund:
The past year has yet again been a challenging time for communities in Wales, however despite the uncertainty it’s become clear that communities across Wales are willing to adapt and take advantage of opportunities to support each other.
The National Lottery Community Fund awarded £30 million to over 600 projects across Wales during 2021. It has been a privilege to witness how our colleagues have been able to support community organisations by working closely with them to develop their ideas. Our regional funding model ensures that we have an understanding of communities across Wales, with Funding Officers working the length and breadth of the country.
Projects in 2021
Our funding is for everyone and intends to support as many people as possible. Around eight in 10 of grants awarded are for under £10,000 – going to grassroots groups and charities. Yet again this year, thanks to National Lottery players, we were able to award a wide range of projects.
SEAS Sailability in north west Wales were awarded a £10,000 National Lottery grant to run a programme of boating and sailing activities over the Summer for disabled people and their families to share experiences and improve wellbeing. An amazing team has enabled them to make a big impact.
With more people looking for outdoor activities to get together and improve wellbeing, we’ve awarded grants to allotment-based projects like Autism Life Centres in Rhondda Cynon Taf. It received £9,900 for its Time to Grow project to support young autistic adults to develop skills while gardening on their allotment.
Using a grant of £299,112, Ethnic Youth Support Team were able continue and develop a multi-lingual telephone helpline, in partnership with Citizens Advice Cymru. Building on a successful pilot project, with referrals being made to a wide range of specialist providers including domestic violence, mental health, hate crime and various community groups. This will give them the crucial reassurance that they will be heard and understood as they get to communicate in their first language.
Green Squirrel were awarded £460,808 to develop the Railway Gardens project which will provide a unique outdoor and indoor space for the community in Splott to design, run, grow and take part in activities that will bring the community together. A building designed in partnership with the community – created from recycled shipping containers to provide two spaces for workshops, training, social events group meetings and activities.
Despite the uncertainty and challenges we’re facing at be start of 2022, we have a lot to look forward to. We will be announcing the successful applicants to our Helping End Homelessness programme in January. The £10 million programme aims to redesign and improve services for people experiencing, or at risk of homelessness.
Later in the year we will be awarding £10 million through our Mind our Future programme which will enable young people to imagine and create a more resilient and mentally healthy future for young people in Wales.
We will celebrate Her Majesty The Queen’s Platinum Jubilee by awarding 70 projects across the UK through a dedicated grant programme. We are also offering an opportunity to mark the occasion by applying for up to £10,000 through our National Lottery Awards for All programme. The funding will help create a greater legacy for our places and spaces, and that support new opportunities, activities and build better relationships with one another, across generations and with the natural world.
Our Sustainable Steps Wales: Mentoring programme will be up and running in 2022 which will use Dormant Accounts Scheme funding to encourage communities to engage with climate action. In the Summer we launch Sustainable Steps Wales: Climate action grants which will offer grants of up to £350,000 to enable communities to bring to life their ideas to take action on climate change.
National Lottery players raise over £30 million for good causes each week throughout the UK each week. Without this generosity we wouldn’t be able support people and communities to thrive and prosper.
I want to wish you all a healthy and happy New Year and to reassure you that we are here to help your community to access National Lottery funding. To find information on applying to The National Lottery Community Fund, visit tnlcommunityfund.org.uk. You can talk to us about your idea for a community project by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or calling 0300 123 0735.