This week, the We Love MCR Charity is re-launching their longest-standing grant programme.
Their ‘Stronger Communities Fund’ is being revitalised to help Manchester in its post-COVID recovery work, and they want local communities to tell them what they need.
The Stronger Communities Fund is calling on community groups and charities in Manchester to apply for funding for initiatives which celebrate and invest in Manchester’s vibrant multicultural neighbourhoods and youthful energy.
Now the COVID-19 vaccination programme is underway, many community groups are preparing to emerge from a period of hibernation and isolation, assessing the holes left in their operations and finances.
We Love MCR Charity is asking Manchester residents directly if they know of any groups in their communities that could benefit from a cash grant from their Fund.
As well as focusing on assisting in the recovery from the pandemic, the Fund’s relaunch will see the maximum grant value increase from £2,000 to £5,000.
The two-year time limit after a successful grant application is also being scrapped.
We Love MCR Charity believes in funding great ideas whenever a community is ready to get started on their project – groups are now able to re-apply to the Stronger Communities Fund just 12 months after a successful award from We Love MCR Charity.
We Love MCR Charity is also pledging a healthy £215,000 to the Fund in the year starting 1st April 2021, reinforcing its commitment to Manchester’s people and communities.
The Stronger Communities Fund is We Love MCR Charity’s oldest grant programme, operating for 10 years and already supporting community groups and charities in every corner of the city.
It welcomes applications across four broad themes: helping in the early years; combating loneliness and social exclusion; protecting and improving our open spaces; and offering positive youth activities.
“The Stronger Communities Fund re-launch simply could not come at a better time for Manchester,” says the charity’s Chair of Trustees and Lord Mayor of Manchester, Councillor Tommy Judge.
“The people of this city have lost loved ones, livelihoods and opportunities during this pandemic.
“Therefore it is the people of this city who are best placed to steer their communities out of the pandemic.
“Often what they need most is support and funding.
“We Love MCR Charity will support our city brilliantly now, as it has done for many years.”
Marie O’Neill-Steinegger, Grants Manager at We Love MCR Charity, said they’ve supported many amazing groups over the last 10 years, and this year they want to support many more.
“Today we’re underlining our commitment to Manchester’s local groups and charities by offering them our financial support,” said Marie.
“Our communities know what they need to do to improve things for their neighbours.
“Contact us with your ideas today!”
What the grants mean to local heroes
The groups funded by We Love MCR Charity are Manchester’s local heroes.
Here is what two of the groups who have received Stronger Communities Fund grants say about the Fund:
“Having all these extra library resources funded by the Stronger Communities Fund is very positive for our residents,” said De Paul UK of Safestop.
“They can now access the right support and skills before they move on to their own accommodation.
“It also makes our accommodation feel more like a home and less like an institution, which has a huge impact on our residents’ wellbeing”.
Ho Shin Do Karate says We Love MCR Charity made the whole process of applying to the Stronger Communities Fund really simple.
“Their grant is helping us to empower our young people, at a time when funding for activities for young people is hard to find,” they said.
If you know an amazing community group or charity that does fantastic work for your area in Manchester, please tell We Love MCR Charity about them on their social media: Twitter, Facebook and Instagram. To find more information about the Stronger Communities Fund, visit welovemcrcharity.org/stronger-communities-fund and encourage local community groups to make an application there. Or you can email the Charity today at firstname.lastname@example.org with your ideas and questions. The next two deadlines to submit applications for funding are 5th March and 2nd April.