COMMUNITY groups and organisations across Hartlepool are celebrating after being awarded a share of £75,000 of council cash.
Hartlepool Borough Council has handed out grants of between £4,000 and £10,000 to a total of nine good causes in Hartlepool through a pot of money called the community pool.
Organisations to benefit include Hartlepool PATCH, Hartlepool Mind, in Tees Street, the Salaam Community Centre, in Murray Street, and Epilepsy Outlook, in York Road.
Hart Gables, which provides help and support for members of the lesbian, gay, bi-sexual and transgender community from its base in York Road and the Hartlepool Foodbank, in Church Street, which provides support for people when they most need it have also benefitted.
All of the applications came under category four of the community pool, which is for the provision of town-wide specialist and support services.
Councillors sitting on the finance and policy committee made the decision at a recent meeting and the decision has been welcomed by the groups.
Joanne Fairless, from Hartlepool’s Hart Gables, said: “We are delighted to get this funding.
“It took a lot of effort to put the application together but it has obviously been worth it and it is great to get this positive feedback.
“We would have lost part of our service without this funding.”
Hartlepool Foodbank manager Al Wales said: “This is very welcome funding.
“We have been looking at our figures and the level of need is increasing month on month.
“January was our busiest month since we opened and since then the level of need has continued to grow which means the project has had to grow.
“Volunteers remain the backbone of the Foodbank but this funding will allow us to take on a part-time co-ordinator to help ensure the professional running of the service and to help sustain it.”
Lin Craddy, project manager at Hartlepool People Centre, said: “This grant from Community Pool will help to support the core work of the organisation supporting our activities, volunteers and core team.
“This grant is so important to us as core funding is the hardest of all funding to raise and will assist us in our efforts to fundraise further.
“We thank everyone who was involved in supporting us.”
Denise Ogden, the council’s director of regeneration and neighbourhoods, outlined the process to members and said there was a lot of interest in the available funding.
Mrs Ogden said: “In total 19 applications were received and the total requested was £169,685.68.
“With £75,000 available, this presents an over-subscription of £94,685.68.
“As in the two previous years, demand for these grants is high and given the levels of funding available, disappointment to some interested parties would be unavoidable.
“Due to the level of funding requested being in excess of that available, a thorough assessment process was undertaken by a panel of officers with representation from neighbourhood management, child and adult commissioning and first contact and support hub teams, with input from the corporate procurement team.”
Officers said that before the panel met, the applications were pre-screened to ensure the proposals met the primary criteria to provide a service which addresses issues associated with family poverty.
1) Hartlepool PATCH - £10,000 towards salary and utility costs.
The organisation deliver a number of training programmes to improve parenting skills. These include a Home Visiting Befriending Scheme, Parent Support Groups, Bump and Baby Support Groups, Training and Development Schemes. Services are delivered from a range of children’s centres across the town.
2) Making a Difference - £10,000 towards utilities and salaries.
Making a Difference opened The Haven in 2005 to provide a free and confidential, one-to-one professional counselling service to young people aged between 11 and 25-years-old to improve their mental health and emotional wellbeing and enable them to achieve their full potential.
3) Hartlepool Mind - £8,719 towards salaries and utilities.
Hartlepool Mind is a registered charity founded in 1997. It is a mental health service offering a variety of services to residents and people in need. The service is delivered from a town centre base and has organisational and self referals.
4) Salaam Community Centre - £9,888 contribution towards salaries.
The Salaam Centre is the only BME advice and guidance project that has been operating in central Hartlepool.
5) Epilepsy Outlook - £4,729.50 towards salaries.
The organisation supports people in Hartlepool with Epilepsy. In addition they run a volunteer programme.
6) Hartlepool Peoples Centre - £10,000 towards salaries.
The People Centre is a community centre in Raby Road, Hartlepool. It offers a space for the delivery of services to the community and a wide range of support to families, individuals, communities and interest groups.
7) Hart Gables - £9,950.04 towards salary and utility costs.
Hart Gables is a user-led organisation based in Hartlepool. The aim of the organisation is to provide advice, support and guidance to the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community across the Tees-Valley area.
8) West View Project CIC - £6,195 towards salaries.
West View Project is a voluntary sector youth organisation that has been operating In Hartlepool for 30 years. The main service we offer are youth clubs and support to young people that are facing difficulties in an area of their life, between the ages of eight and 25. Organisation are based in the Miers Avenue Community Centre.
9) Hartlepool Foodbank - £5,518.46 (awarded up to £10,000 subject to available budget) towards salaries and utilities.
Hartlepool Foodbank CIO is and project run by Churches Together and Hartlepool Foodbank. It provides food to those in crisis. Opened in December 2012 as a franchise of the Trussell Trust the organisation works with a large number of referall partners.