The Isle of Wight Foundation, a charitable trust, was launched last year as part of the companies’ commitment to contribute to community life beyond their extensive programme of work to improve the Island’s highway network.
In 2014, nine projects were successfully awarded funding of between £4,500-£14,000 each by the Isle of Wight Foundation including: Storeroom 2010, UKSA (United Kingdom Sailing Academy), The Law Centre, IYWAC (Island Youth Water Activities Centre), The Way Forward Programme, YMCA, Niton Community Project and GROW (Giving Residents Opportunities and Wellbeing).
A further sum of around £80,000 is available this year, in grants of between £3,000 and £16,000 per award, for additional community projects that meet the aspirations of the Foundation, specifically:
• Projects which provide people with better chances to access training and development to improve their life skills and opportunity for employment
• Projects that help to build stronger communities with more active citizens working together to minimise social exclusion.
In addition to the financial help available the Foundation also matches Island Roads’ employees to each of the projects as part of Island Roads’ volunteering scheme. The scheme gives employees a number of paid working days per year to volunteer for community projects and a chance to lend practical support, skills and expertise to assist the projects as they develop.
Phil Jackson, Chair of the Isle of Wight Foundation board said:
“We were delighted last year to be able to award grants from the Isle of Wight Foundation to nine community projects which look set to make a real difference to the lives of residents on the Island and we will be sharing more of their progress over the course of this year.
“With the launch of our 2015 grants scheme we hope more charitable and community groups will apply for funding so that they too can realise their ambitions and collectively we can help tackle the issues of social exclusion on the Island.”
Eleanor Bowen from Niton Community Projects, one of last year’s successful applicants said:
“We were thrilled and surprised to get the funding which will make a huge difference for local residents and enable us to create a flexible multi-use facility to help bring together the community of Niton village and the surrounding areas. I would strongly urge other community groups and charities to applying for funding – you never know, it could be your project benefiting this time.”
Applicants from the charity, voluntary and not-for-profit sector on the Island are invited to submit applications with details of their projects before the deadline of 12 noon on 1st May 2015. These will then be shortlisted and visits undertaken to discuss the projects in more detail before the final grant awards are approved with the award being made in December 2015.
The financial support approved must be able to be used within 12 months of the award – by December 2016. Whilst the Foundation prefers to provide financial support for ‘capital’ projects, all forms of support will be considered whether for new projects or opportunities to extend existing projects.
For more details on the Isle of Wight Foundation, current projects underway and details on how to apply for the 2015 grant scheme visit http://www.islandroads.com/137-iw-foundation.html or contact us on 01983 822440.
Photographed L-R: Local volunteers Sue Wallis, Eleanor Bowen, Wendy Harris and Terry Harris from Niton Community Project in the library section of the newly refurbished building