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Cultivating communities through gardening

April 12, 2017
map of community gardens awarded funding across Scotland

Map of community gardens awarded funding across Scotland

This National Gardening Week we’re celebrating the £2,619,808 of community garden projects we have funded in the last year across Scotland, thanks to National Lottery players.

Community gardens are a great way to bring communities together, and can help people from all walks of life feel less isolated and improve mental health and wellbeing.

In the East of Scotland, Ian Berry, who is 56 and has epilepsy, started attending Tayport Community Trust’s community garden last May.

Ian got the chance to make a bug hotel and bird boxes, and helped to construct raised garden beds. He is grateful to the garden as it has enabled him to make new friends and build his self-confidence.

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New success rates and the opportunities of receiving funding

April 4, 2017

Following updates in September 2016 and January 2017, we have new success rates when applying for our grants. The below gives the most recent statistics along with the average (mean) success rate percentage between April and December 2016.

Jan and Feb 17

* How can Community Assets have a 100% success rate when it is so competitive?

The process to be considered for Community Assets tends to mean only the minority of organisations will formally apply. Unfortunately the majority of organisations won’t go as far as this. On the upside, organisations who can then apply might have a higher chance of being considered further.

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Can we get funding to improve our building?

March 23, 2017

Fie Ecology Centre 1

When it comes to making physical changes or improvements to buildings, there are a range of things we are more or less likely to fund. Here are the basics you need to know…

What do we need in place before getting a grant?

In most cases your organisation will either need to own the building or hold at least a 5 year lease before we can fund you to make improvements to it. For some of our larger grants we require ownership.

If the work will require planning permission, you’ll need this before we give you money to do it.

What grants can we get for our building?

The simplest and quickest way to get funding for minor building improvements is through Awards for All Scotland, which offers grants up to £10,000. Awards for All is easy to access, and can fund a great variety of organisation types and building work – from fixing up church halls to refurbishing sports clubs or social enterprises. The downside is that you’re limited to a maximum of £10,000 in any 12 month period.

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First time mother’s joy

March 22, 2017

For lots of new mums up and down the country this coming Mother’s Day will be extra special and that’s certainly the case for 32 year old biology teacher, Izzy Milns, from Paisley.

Izzy and her partner, William, are proud parents to five month old identical twin daughters, Alexandra and Indiana and, with a little help from National Lottery funded Twins and Multiple Birth Association (TAMBA) , they got the specialist support and advice they needed in time for their new family arriving.

left to right: Aly, Izzy and Indy

Izzy said, “As I was having identical twins I had to see a consultant every two weeks during my pregnancy and we also had a series of midwives to help out but, as a first time mother of babies who have very specific needs, I was desperately looking for information that was relevant to me.   I heard about TAMBA from my twin specialist midwife, Susan, and immediately registered for one of their courses.

I was so glad I did it two months before the girls were born because it was absolutely brilliant and it was great to meet other parents to be in the same situation.  The girl who took the course is a mum to five year old identical twins herself so I felt that she could really identify what I was going through.

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GCA research informs Community Assets funding

March 16, 2017

Stakeholders in high visibility jackets looking at a drawing of a planned developmentIn this blog Eric Samuel, our Senior Policy & Learning Manager, tells us about the knowledge and learning behind the formation of Community Assets funding. 

This month Big Lottery Fund Scotland will make its final awards through Growing Community Assets (GCA) and research has now been undertaken to inform its successor, Community Assets.

Since 2006, funding from GCA has been helping communities throughout the length and breadth of the country to become stronger and more resilient by acquiring and developing not just physical assets like land and buildings, but all kinds of assets that matter to them, such as renewable energy. To date, a truly diverse range of 170 projects totalling £86 million have been funded under GCA, in 26 of Scotland’s 32 local authority areas.

The good news for projects who will be funded by GCA this month is that recently published results of research undertaken by the Big Lottery Fund last year suggests that, based on the experience of projects already operating, they have much to be positive and optimistic about.

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