Westminster Foundation donates £250,000 to Community Response Fund

6 April 2020

Cheshire West and Chester Council’s Community Response Fund has been boosted by a £250,000 donation from the Westminster Foundation, led by The Duke of Westminster, meaning a total of £500,000 is now available to support local community initiatives.

The Community Response Fund offers community initiatives emergency funding to respond to issues as a result of coronavirus (COVID-19).

More than 1,500 residents have already pledged their support for the coordinated community response, which is being organised by the Council, Cheshire West Voluntary Action (CWVA) and the rest of the community and voluntary sector.

Many new community initiatives have started to appear as west Cheshire shows true community spirit to support some of the most vulnerable residents in the borough.

The Fund will be able to help these initiatives, as well as those more established ones that will continue to provide a valuable service in the fight against COVID-19.

It could support with things like training volunteers, administration, marketing, fuel, supplies and other costs.

Councillor Carol Gahan, Cabinet Member for Finance, said: “We’d like to thank the Westminster Foundation for its donation towards our Community Response Fund.

“Both new and established community initiatives across west Cheshire are going to play a key role supporting vulnerable people during this unprecedented period.

“An extra £250,000 in funding from the Westminster Foundation will make a significant difference to these community initiatives.”

Kate Brown, Director of the Westminster Foundation, said: “At a time like this, it’s vital we support and care for one another in our local communities. 

“The Duke of Westminster and Grosvenor family have a long association with Chester and the surrounding rural areas, which is why we wanted to match Cheshire West and Chester Council’s Community Response Fund as one of our initiatives to manage the impact of coronavirus.

“Led by The Duke of Westminster, we are doing all we can to help a range of organisations and charities maintain their vital services, especially those supporting vulnerable children and families, or those who are isolated and may be struggling to access food and maintain positive mental health at this very difficult time.

Who can apply

  • Any group based in west Cheshire
  • Voluntary organisations, community groups, small charities or other not-for-profit-organisations

Applications for the Community Response Fund will be considered from groups that show they are providing a service or initiative that benefits others in their community in response to this emergency. The Council is unlikely to support individuals, businesses and sporting organisations and all applications will be considered on a case-by-case basis.

Any grants over £500 will be considered, but it is expected most grants will be around £2,000. To access an application form, community initiatives will need to email: chesterlocality@cheshirewestandchester.gov.uk. They will then be able to complete the application form and return it to the same email address. If groups do not have their own bank account, they should contact the Locality team for support.

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