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Mike welcomes Big Lottery funding for the Shpresa Programme

Mike Gapes, MP for Ilford South, has welcomed news that the Big Lottery's Reaching Communities award worth £314,987 has gone to the Shpresa Programme.

The Shpresa Programme promotes the participation and contribution of the Albanian-speaking community in the United Kingdom.

The project called 'Make it Happen' will provide supplementary school sessions for children, young people and parents from refugee/migrant communities. The project will include language classes advice sessions, accredited learning courses and sports sessions. The aim of the project is to provide young people with a positive cultural identity and to support an increase in their confidence and skills while also improving their parents' knowledge of the education system to support their children more effectively.

Commenting on the announcement, Mike said: "I am delighted that this investment will be coming into my constituency to support a worthwhile and much needed project."

The Big Lottery Fund is the biggest community funder in the UK. They are responsible for giving out 40% of the money raised by the National Lottery and fund 13,000 projects every year.

Do you need funding for your community project?

Are you thinking of starting up a local project? Do you already run an established service in the community? If this is the case you may need more information on funding opportunities to support your work.

The Big Lottery Fund is the biggest community funder in the UK. Every year they fund 13,000 projects, using money raised by National Lottery players. Most of their grants are small – £10,000 or less – but they transform communities and change millions of lives every year.

Funding available

Local community groups and registered charities in England can apply for the following grants:

Awards for All gives groups a way to get small Lottery grants of between £300 and £10,000. It funds a wide range of community projects aimed at developing skills, improving health, revitalising the local environment and enabling people to become more active citizens. In short, projects that address the issues, needs and aspirations of local communities and people.

Reaching Communities funding is for projects that help people and communities most in need. Grants are available from £10,000, upwards and funding can last for up to 5 years. These grants can fund salaries, running costs, a contribution towards core costs and equipment. They can also fund up to £100,000 for land, buildings or refurbishment capital costs.

Advice on applying

Groups considering applying for funding are advised to contact the Big Advice line to discuss their project idea on 0345 4 10 20 30. Additional guidance on strengthening your funding application is available here and you can register your interest to attend a live online funding workshop delivered by Funding Officers

You can also find out more about other sources of Lottery Good Cause funding, including grants for arts, heritage and sports projects here.

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