Voluntary and community organisations across Stratford-on-Avon District are invited to apply for Stratford District: Digital inclusion grants, providing up to £4,000 to help your community get online.
We are particularly looking for applications to be aimed at supporting isolated or rural communities and those lacking basic IT skills and would welcome applications that seek to increase financial wellbeing and access to training or employment opportunities. Applications should clearly demonstrate how they will contribute to the development of the skills and confidence needed to access the internet, get the most out of being online and ensure that there is suitable provision for them to do so within their community or a community facility.
Cllr Maurice Howse Portfolio holder for Enterprise, Revenues and Housing said “People living in rural areas or those without basic computer skills can face difficulties in getting online and gaining those important basic skills. There are fewer local opportunities for digital skills training, and travel to attend training is often not possible. These grants will enable digitally excluded residents to gain the skills and confidence they need to realise the benefits of the internet.”
The Digital Inclusion Grants programme has been made possible through funding of £40,000 provided by Orbit Heart of England to support collaboration and partnership across the district. According to Tim Dumbleton, Digital Inclusion and Development Manager at Orbit, “Being online is becoming increasingly important and Orbit is an organisation that recognises that we want to help our customers and the wider community get the most out of being online. Funding this programme really demonstrates our commitment to supporting both local companies and residents and supports our vision of building communities.”
Voluntary Action Stratford-upon-Avon (VASA) is working in partnership with the District Council and Orbit to provide support to communities in their application. An introductory meeting took place on Tuesday 28th July to provide communities and groups with more information and VASA will continue to support those groups who are already working on bids. There are still several weeks before applications close and any new groups who would like support should contact VASA as soon as they can –
Please contact David Morgan (Fundraising and Development Officer at VASA) 01789 298102
You can download an application form at www.stratford.gov.uk/community/community-grants-funding.cfm or contact Carol Roberts on 01789 260112 firstname.lastname@example.org if you require any further information.
If you would like ideas on what you could do for your community download this help guide DIGITAL-INCLUSION-SUPPORT.pdf
The closing date for applications will be 16 October 2015 with funds released in November 2015, grants will be awarded on a one-off basis, but projects can be for up to two years.