Greater Manchester’s Mayor and Police and Crime Commissioner has delivered a £200,000 Christmas cash boost to communities across the region.
A community ambassador scheme to tackle hate crime, an adult literacy programme, and a breakfast club for ex-offenders are among 50 projects that have been given a slice of Tony Lloyd’s Active Citizen’s Fund to boost volunteering and help build stronger, safer neighbourhoods.

Tony said: “Through this funding we are backing our communities and investing in their innovation and enthusiasm to make Greater Manchester’s neighbourhoods stronger, safer and more inclusive. By working with local people and giving our residents a helping hand, we can make a real difference together.”

Today, Tony has also announced the third round of his Youth Aspiration Fund – a £500,000 pot to empower young people, raise their aspirations and develop their life skills. Youth groups and organisations are invited to apply for grants of up to £30,000.
“By empowering our young people, giving them a voice and the freedom to explore new ideas and build their skills and confidence, we can give them the best start in life. The Youth Aspiration Fund has already helped hundreds of youngsters across Greater Manchester do just that, through a host of innovative projects. If you share this ambition then I invite you to bid for a slice of this money.” adds Tony.

Previous Youth Aspiration Fund bids include hard-hitting initiatives using mock prison cells and real-life experiences to educate young people about the consequences of crime, the development of a youth hub in the heart of the community where young people can get support, advice and learn new skills and interactive, theatre-based projects exploring issues of grooming, bullying and anti-social behaviour.

Among the projects listed are

· Bringing Breightmet Together (Heartlift Limited, Bolton) – £5,000 – To recruit and train voluntary ambassadors to work with communities to tackle prejudice and hate crime against refugees.

· Divert (Women of Worth, Bury) – £5,000 – Working with retail stores and GMP, this programme supports women who have committed shoplifting offences to address the underlying issues for their offending and turn their lives around.

· Brunswick Food Pantry (Hope is Key CIC, Manchester) – £3,424 – A volunteer-led service offering hot meals alongside help and support in a welcoming environment to local families in need. Project will also address issues such as mental ill health and unemployment.

· A Sense of Belonging (Saddleworth Environmental Education, Oldham) – £5,000 – Provision of outdoor activity courses for young people, which includes awareness sessions on topics such as child sexual exploitation, bullying and substance abuse.

· Humraaz (Rochdale Women’s Welfare Association, Rochdale) – £5,000 – A volunteer recruitment and training programme to support victims of domestic abuse.

· I’m in Control Programme (Community Success, Salford) – £4,233 – Working with vulnerable young people to tackle their mental health problems through relaxation and behaviour change sessions, while building their confidence and job skills.

· Enabling Youth Through Motocross (Stockport Action for Voluntary Youth, Stockport) – £4,930 – The scheme teaches young people how to ride motocross in a safe and supported environment while teaching them about the consequences of illegal riding.

· Read for Life (St Peter’s Community Partnerships – LEAP Children and Families Centre, Tameside) – £4,976 – A peer mentoring programme to support adults in improving their reading skills and encourage them to take an active role in their community.

· Step Up Trafford – Housing, Education and Employment Pathway (Housing Options Service, Trafford) – £5,000 – A skills and wellbeing support service for homeless people, aimed at improving their mental health and wellbeing, developing their skills and confidence and supporting them into accommodation.

· Life After Project (DIAS Domestic Violence Centre, Wigan) – £4,996 – Specialist counselling and support services for male and female survivors of sexual abuse.


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