Community Fund is making a difference

More than 60 groups have benefited from £155,000 of funding from the Wessex Water Foundation.

The Foundation’s Community Fund supports charitable and community activities that improve the lives of local people, with grants targeted at grassroots and small to medium-sized organisations where funds can make a significant difference.

Priority is given to work that:

  • Supports people in financial difficulty or those who lack access to services.
  • Takes place in areas of multiple deprivation or rural isolation.
  • Helps build stronger, more resilient communities.
  • Helps people manage or avoid debt, including raising awareness of Wessex Water and other utility affordability schemes.
  • Educates and supports people of all ages to take steps to build financial capability, money management and household budgeting skills.

The Foundation was launched in 2020 and is run in partnership with the Somerset, Dorset, Wiltshire and Quartet Community Foundations. It provides grants across the Wessex Water region, totalling at least £500,000 per year.

Among the latest Community Fund beneficiaries is Off the Record, which helps fund mental health care and one-to-one support for young people in Bath and North East Somerset, along with acquired brain injury support organisation Headway Somerset.

In Wiltshire, the Able Hands Trust received funding for a farm-based café project that offers work experience and employment opportunities for people with learning disabilities. And Home-Start North Dorset have had a grant for volunteers who help local families on all aspects of parenting.

Kirsty Scarlett, Wessex Water’s Head of Community Engagement, said: “It has never been more important to support the needs of the communities we serve, as well as making a firm commitment to support them longer term.

“Through our Community Fund, we’re so pleased to be able help such a wide array of projects that reflect the fantastic diversity of our region.”

Applications for the 2022/23 Community Fund will re-open in September. Meanwhile, projects primarily focused on the local environment are advised to apply to the Wessex Water Foundation Environment Fund from May 2022.

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