A £1.2MILLION grant programme will help future-proof community organisations in Denbighshire.

The new Denbighshire Key Fund will provide revenue and capital support to third sector groups in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic, Brexit, and other economic challenges including the national cost-of-living and energy crises.

Led by Ruthin-based Denbighshire Voluntary Services Council (DVSC), the scheme is financed via the UK Government’s Levelling-Up Fund.

DVSC Chief Officer Tom Barham says that grants are focused on sustainability, resilience, and long-term planning.

“The money is there to strengthen organisations going forward, support delivery, staffing and infrastructure,” he added.

“Community organisations are vital to this region – volunteering levels in Denbighshire are the third highest in Wales – and it is crucial they continue meeting the needs of people who utilise their services every day.

“We want to make the sector more resilient to unforeseen changes and threats like Covid.  It is a unique fund in that sense, and we hope to see applications that target these areas.”

Examples include rural groups holding events and activities for their local community, or financial support for equipment, furniture, rent, repairs, security, energy bills, refurbishing facilities or other key costs that would have a benefit now and in the future.

Organisations can apply for a revenue or capital grant of between £2,000 and £50,000, and the maximum total amount any applicant can receive is £50,000.

Charities, social enterprises, and community groups based in Denbighshire, or who have a significant number of beneficiaries living in the county, are eligible to apply.  Large, national organisations are unlikely to be successful.

“We will award grants to those who genuinely know how to improve services in communities within the area,” said Tom.

“And it’s important for smaller groups to get in touch; we know the impact you have at a local level and that often grant funding seems out of your reach – that is certainly not the case here and we really want to hear from you.”

The first round of applications is now open and closes on Saturday September 30, before reopening in March 2024.

For more information, email keyfund@dvsc.co.uk or visit the website: www.dvsc.co.uk.