The Tower in Cwmbran

Community groups across Torfaen, Caerphilly and Blaenau Gwent have been urged to take advantage of a funding scheme that offers up to £3,000 for each successful applicant.

The West Gwent Community Cohesion Small Grant is available to community-based projects in the Caerphilly, Blaenau Gwent and Torfaen county boroughs.

Last year, the Friends of Morgan Jones Community Allotment group was among the successful applicants, and were full of praise for the benefits it has brought them.

The group’s members wanted to improve the accessibility of their allotments after noticing some people were finding it difficult to reach crops growing in the ground.

The grant money they received from the fund then allowed the group to build raised beds – along with the support of local school Ysgol Gyfun Cwm Rhymni – to make their allotments more inclusive.

One of the group members explained: “I really appreciate what is being done for anyone who struggles with any type of issue affecting mobility. 

“In my time, I have seen how folks have struggled as a result and how the quality of life has been impacted. 

“Now I am one such person, the installation of raised beds for vegetable growing has delighted me.”

Eligible projects should demonstrate how they want to challenge discrimination, promote inclusion, and provide opportunities for people who might not ordinarily come together to meet and celebrate their culture or religion, according to guidance from Caerphilly County Borough Council.

“We’re keen to hear from groups and organisations with ideas for building cohesive and resilient communities, so we’re looking for schemes that enable citizens from different backgrounds to share positive relationships, to feel safe in their neighbourhoods, and to have a sense of mutual respect and shared values,” a council spokesman added.

The closing date for applications is Friday July 19 and projects must be delivered by January 31, 2025.

Torfaen applicants should contact Bridie Saunders by emailing or calling 01633 647223.

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