The funding boost has been generated by proceeds from the 5p single-use carrier bag charge in the Co-op’s Welsh food stores.
Welsh groups can get grants of up to £10,000 to explore enterprising ideas that could contribute to a more sustainable future for their community space. Funding could support feasibility costs, technical or legal fees and, projects which test and explore new ideas. Eligible organisations must engage local people and support the environment, and applications close at noon onFriday, 21 June.
In addition, interest-free loans of up to £50,000 are available to organisations to grow more established business ideas. Loans are usually repaid within five years with no need to make repayments in the first year. Some organisations could be eligible for a further grant dependent upon circumstances.
The Co-op Foundation has been awarding funding to help community spaces UK-wide become more sustainable since 2017. One group to benefit recently is Welcome to our Woods, based in the Rhondda Fawr Valley, South Wales. Its £90,000 funding boost will enable it to up-scale its conversion of waste wood into saleable products like furniture and biomass fuel, generating income to help maintain more areas of woodland sustainably, while creating jobs, training and volunteering opportunities for local people.
For more information about The Co-op Foundation, and details of how to apply to the new fund, visit www.coopfoundation.org.uk