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SARH offers funding to help community projects in Stafford
A Stafford housing association is offering a significant funding boost to community projects in its neighbourhood areas.
Stafford and Rural Homes (SARH) has a £100,000 pot of funding for grants to help local people make the improvements they want see in their neighbourhoods.
The annual Community Initiative scheme, which is being launched for 2013/14 across the borough this week, is part of SARH’s commitment to promoting community spirit and helping to improve standards of living where it has homes.
Sandra Shipperley, customer liaison officer for SARH, said: “The aim of this scheme is to give customers the opportunity to make the improvements they want to see made in their neighbourhoods to promote a greater sense of pride and ownership.
“We urge customers who are keen to make a difference to consider applying for funding through this scheme.”
Residents at Longhope Drive, an Independent Living Scheme run by SARH in Stone, is just one of many communities that have benefitted from the funding.
Margaret Sheppard, one of the Longhope Drive, residents said: “The money granted from our bid paid for a bench and patio area on previously unused communal land. We have since added flowers, a pergola and table and chairs. The improvement to the area has been of real benefit to the residents here.
“Many of us only have very small gardens so it encourages people to come out and gather together – which is especially nice when the sun is shining.”
Bids will be judged on a number of considerations including improvement of SARH properties, whether it reduces vandalism or fear of crime, builds community spirits, benefits elderly or vulnerable groups or improves disabled access.
This year 25 per cent of the funds available in the scheme will also be allocated to bids with a positive environmental focus.
“SARH is already working with some great green initiatives across the borough including community allotment and garden projects and we’re really keen to hear from others that could also benefit from our help,” said Sandra Shipperley.
Application packs include full details of how to apply for funds as well as ideas and suggestions for a bid and outlines how schemes will be judged.
The deadline date for returning application form is Friday 1st March 2013.
To request an application pack contact Sandra Shipperley on 0800 111 4554 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.