Community

Residents to bid for share of £500,000 in new community fund to improve neighbourhoods

Residents to bid for share of £500,000 in new community fund to improve neighbourhoods

Residents in Oldham will soon get the chance to bid for a share of £500,000 towards community projects through a new fund set up to help improve neighbourhoods across the North West and East Midlands.

To mark its first anniversary on 3 April 2019, Jigsaw Homes Group will launch its new Jigsaw Foundation fund which also allows tenants to vote on where they would like some of the money to be spent.

Jigsaw, which owns c34,000 homes, is encouraging bids from a range of different applicants across it communities including local or charity projects, resident groups, voluntary organisations, social enterprises and partner agencies.

Jigsaw Homes Group formed on 3 April 2018 following the merger of New Charter Group and Adactus Housing Group and Jigsaw Foundation replaces neighbourhood funds run by the two former organisations.

Oldham Coliseum  

Oldham Coliseum project

Projects to benefit from community funding in the past include Oldham Coliseum which has helped more than 100 residents and young people back into work or education through creative arts.

Funding has helped to run a weekly women’s group for residents from a diverse communities, projects with local schools and a teaching programme for 16-25 year olds who are not in education, employment or training which has given them an insight into the day-to-day operations of a theatre.

John Edwards, from Oldham Coliseum said: “The Coliseum and Jigsaw hold the same core values of supporting communities and offering ways for people to be inspired and reach their potential. We’ve been able to reach with a far more diverse number of people and this has allowed the theatre the opportunity to achieve little wins and life changing results.”

Other projects to receive funding include local theatres, school workshops, sports activities, dementia cafes, social enterprise start-ups and work clubs.

Applications to Jigsaw Foundation must demonstrate that their projects make a difference to people’s lives and communities either by improving health, well being and loneliness, employment or training, the environment, financial and digital inclusion or supporting people to sustain their tenancies.

Tenants who have registered to the landlord’s Jigsaw Rewards tenant feedback system will be surveyed on applications of up to £25,000. Bids in excess of this will be decided on by Jigsaw’s executive team.

Other projects to receive funding include local theatres, school workshops, sports activities, dementia cafes, social enterprise start-ups and work clubs.

£50,000 from the Jigsaw Foundation programme has also been set aside a special ‘hardship fund’ to support people in immediate financial difficulty with applications made via internal and agency referrals only.

Emma Wilson, Group Director of Neighbourhoods at Jigsaw Homes Group said: “Jigsaw Foundation confirms our continued investment in all our communities and we look forward to launching this fund on our upcoming first birthday to support projects close to people’s hearts that have a positive impact in our neighbourhoods.”

Applications open on Jigsaw’s first anniversary on 3 April 2019. Application forms can be downloaded in advance of the launch date but entries must not be submitted before 3 April.

For a paper copy, please contact 0161 331 2000.

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