Notice: This Fund closed on 26th March 2023.
Cheshire Community Action is inviting community buildings, community groups and schools across Cheshire West to apply for funding to help them open their doors to support local people through the cost of living crisis this winter.
Cheshire West and Chester Council has provided the funding (administered by Cheshire Community Action) in the form of grants up to £500 (more than one grant can be awarded where required) to support organisations in meeting additional running costs involved in setting up a Warm, Welcoming Space during the winter period. Applications will be considered on a first come first served basis.
The benefits of supporting local people from your community with this initiative include:
- People being able to save money on their energy bills;
- People being able to access advice and information, and share ideas with each other to help with cost of living challenges;
- Improved community spirit and wellbeing through increased social interaction, connectivity and sense of belonging;
- A place to invite specialist support provider to further assist those that may need additional support over the winter.
This funding programme will allow community buildings, community organisations and schools the funding to meet increased running costs involved in setting up a new Warm, Welcoming Space offer or adding to an existing one. For example, if you are already hosting activities such as lunch clubs, children’s clubs, coffee mornings and bingo nights etc. you can use this funding to include additional provision for those groups e.g. additional free hot meals and drinks. Or you can use this funding to set up a new dedicated Warm, Welcoming Space offer on a regular basis through the winter.
These running costs can include (but not limited to):
- Food and refreshments (groceries, tea/coffee etc.);
- Additional use of utilities (gas, electric, water);
- Venue hiring charges;
- Furniture (e.g. new tables, chairs, cooking and water heating equipment, blankets);
- Additional staff costs (e.g. to extend hours to manage Warm, Welcoming Space provision);
- Volunteer expenses (e.g. travel and subsistence);
- Marketing (e.g. printing leaflets and posters)
To help ensure that as many Warm, Welcoming Spaces as possible can benefit from the funding, grants may be capped – this will be demand dependent.
Applications and Timeline
Applications can be made on the Warm, Welcoming Spaces Grant Fund Application Form and returned via email to: email@example.com . Or you can apply using the Online Application Form. (Note: You can use the Word application form to draft your answers in advance of completing the online form). A confirmation receipt will be sent once we have received your application.
There will be a rolling grants panel, and you will be informed of the panel’s decision at the earliest convenience but no later than 2 weeks from the date when your application is submitted.
To make the process accessible to all eligible organisations, applications will be accepted in alternative formats (e.g. using a video or giving an in-person or online presentation). If you wish to apply using an alternative format please contact Cheshire Community Action (CCA) to discuss it.
Applications open – 23rd November 2022
Closing date for applications – 26th March 2023
Awards made – Weekly
You can apply if your organisation is a:
- Voluntary and community organisation
- Constituted group or club
- Registered charity
- Charitable incorporated organisation (CIO)
- Not-for-profit company
- Community interest company (CIC)
- Parish or Town Council
This funding is to be used to cover running costs for activities that are open to all members of the community that is in addition to the current services your organisation runs. If you currently run services that are open to all members of your community, then these grants can be used to offset some of the costs in providing these services.
We will not fund:
- Retrospective costs (previous expenditure)
Cheshire West Warm, Welcoming Spaces Charter
All Warm, Welcoming Space providers are asked to sign up to the Cheshire West Warm, Welcoming Spaces Charter:
- A warm welcome being provided, as well as a warm place
- Everyone who attends will be treated equally, with dignity and respect
- Providing a safe place with any relevant safeguarding, health and safety, and food hygiene policies and regulations adhered to
- Confidentiality and discretion – not telling anyone the reason why some needs a Warm, Welcoming Space, unless an individual gives permission and / or it raises a safeguarding issue
- Being non-judgemental – whatever the reason for attending a Warm, Welcoming Space, people will be treated the same and never judged
There are other eligibility conditions that need to be met, which are included on the application form.
Applications will be reviewed and evaluated by a grant selections panel using a scoring system based on the eligibility criteria. Decisions to make funding offers will be taken by the panel. All funding offers will be subject to a signed agreement that will include a commitment by the recipient organisations to report on outputs and outcomes of the agreed funding purposes.
Management of Successful Awards
Once awards have been determined by the grants panel (overseen by CCA) standard grant agreements will be entered into with successful applicants, the subsequent monitoring of those agreements, and the issuing of payments, will be managed on behalf of the Council by Cheshire Community Action.
There will be a simple and easy to complete online questionnaire to collect some basic data in relation to the users of your Warm, Welcoming Space during the grant period.
(You can use the Word application form to draft your answers in advance of completing the online form)