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Small grants make big difference

[Friday 31 July 2009]
Malham Safari
Grant-aided art class, Malhamdale

IN THE six months to April 2009, Grassroots Grants worth £232,000 were allocated to 76 small voluntary and community groups in North Yorkshire, thanks to the Yorkshire Dales Millennium Trust (YDMT).

Village hall committees, sports clubs, playgroups, local history projects, archaeology and heritage groups were amongst those to benefit – but there were so many applications that the trust ran out of funds.

The scheme opened for applications last October, inviting volunteer groups with annual incomes of less than £30,000 to apply. The YDMT, who work in partnership with York and North Yorkshire Community Foundation (YNYCF) to administer the grants, report that “we ere overwhelmed with the response.”

Says Gillian Muir of YDMT: “This year the fund has received so many applications that we have become a victim of our own success and have had to suspend new applications for the time being, but we will be inviting fresh applications when further funding becomes available.

“It has been very satisfying to see how much local communities have already benefited from the Grassroots Grants programme and we hope to enable more groups make a big difference to their local area in the future.”

One of the projects to be supported was the Malham Safari, which received £900 to support its annual treasure hunt trail, which in turn raises funds for other local projects. Some of the funds paid for a professional artist to run workshops creating model safari animals.

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