VOLUNTARY and community groups in Bournemouth are being encouraged to apply for funding as the Council opens its Community Action Grant Scheme.

The Bournemouth Council initiative offers grants of between £200 and £5,000 which must be spent within 12 months to help fund a specific one-off project or activity.

The scheme aims to provide financial support to groups which help to reduce anti-social behaviour and improve engagement within the community.

Councillor Jane Kelly, right, Cabinet Member for Partnership and Regeneration, said: “The Community Action Grants are a fantastic opportunity for voluntary organisations and community groups in Bournemouth to access funding for projects which meet our criteria.

“These organisations are absolutely vital to help to empower communities to make improvements in their areas in ways that they know will make a difference, and I am delighted that these grants are available to help them bring their projects to life.

“We have some amazing talent for ideas and organisation in our communities, and I would urge anyone with ideas for projects to formulate their plans and apply for this funding to make it happen.”

Turn Your Back UK has already been awarded £4,336 to develop volunteer led workshops on knife crime for young people.

The charity was set up by Jane Ormerod in memory of her son Nicholas, who died aged 29 after he was knifed in Boscombe in April 2011.

East Dorset’s Retired and Senior Volunteer Programme was given £3,879 to run a weekly volunteer run coffee morning for isolated older people in the north of the Borough.

The scheme has also helped St Christopher’s Church as they were handed £700 to expand their successful drop-in centre for 0 to three year-olds. The deadline for applications is Friday February 28 at 5pm.

For further information contact Romany Meehan on 01202 466130 or email: romany.meeha n@bournemouthcvs.org.uk