£3m in grants are up for grabs

UP TO £3 million is being made available to organisations which provide services aimed at strengthening communities in East Sussex.

The 2013 East Sussex Commissioning Grants Prospectus has been published, revealing details of the desired outcomes, the funds available and how organisations may apply.

This is the third year of a new approach in which funding is being made available through the county council and the NHS who will put in place a range of support through the grants.

Last year, the prospectus awarded more than £7 million to voluntary and community organisations working to improve people’s lives and received national recognition for good practice at the same time.

The approach has been developed jointly with people who use the services, along with carers and voluntary and community organisations.

This year’s aims are to help:

n Vulnerable children have their voices heard

n Disadvantaged young children and their families

n Adults with long term conditions and stroke, learning disabilities, autism and mental health needs to live independently

n People who are at risk of harm from anti-social behaviour

n People in leading healthy lives.

The deadline for applications is April 25.

Awards will be announced in July with new services starting from October 2013.

Becky Shaw, chief executive of East Sussex County Council, said: “The way this funding works means that we can be specific about the impact we want to achieve while giving other organisations the space and ability to involve people who use services and use their expertise and experience to propose new ways to deliver real results in our communities.”

Local people who use the services will continue to play a key role in deciding who should be given grants, helping to assess the impact that organisations will have, particularly around strengthening communities.

Importance will be placed on quality and building networks amongst people and organisations, so they can help each other and deliver value for money.

Interested organisations are being invited to a meeting with council and NHS staff on March 20, to get a greater understanding of what is needed and the application process.

For details about how to apply, visit www.eastsussex.gov.uk/CGP