Community organisations and charities across South London have been bolstered by a total of £220,205 in funding, committed through National Grid’s Community Grant Programme (CGP).
Since the beginning of last year, funds have been awarded to applicants located near sites operated by National Grid’s London Power Tunnels (LPT) project, a £1 billion scheme to rewire South London via deep underground tunnels. The 32.5km route runs through sites including Wimbledon, Kings Avenue, Bengeworth Road, Kidbrooke, Eltham, Hurst and Crayford.
The CGP seeks to strengthen and uplift communities across areas where National Grid is carrying out key infrastructure works through the provision of financial support to eligible groups and organisations. The programme has so far been a catalyst for positive change and community empowerment for those living near LPT’s South London route.
Successful applicants are able to use the grant money to support impactful initiatives and worthy causes that will benefit local communities socially, economically and environmentally. So far 12 organisations situated near to LPT sites have been awarded grants of up to £20,000, enabling them to drive remarkable initiatives that enhance their local areas.
We know there are many deserving causes that would benefit from funding and are looking forward to seeing more applications over the coming months
Loughborough Junction Action Group, located close to the Bengeworth Road LPT site, is one of the groups that has benefitted from the CGP. Funds were used here to support work around the Loughborough Farm community growing project as well as the Grove Adventure Playground – ensuring a thriving inner-city green space where locals can come together to foster friendships and connect with one another.
Anthea Masey, Chair, Loughborough Junction Action Group, said: “We learnt about funding from National Grid by being involved with the community liaison group for the works taking place at Bengeworth Road. The funding from National Grid has been unbelievably helpful in keeping our projects going, allowing them to expand, involve more volunteers and making sure people can increase their skills. It’s all about enabling us to bring our community together.”
St Giles Trust, a UK-wide charity based in Camberwell, which works with young people facing disadvantages such as homelessness, addiction, exploitation, long-term unemployment and mental health, also benefited from the CGP. Funds supported the SOS Summer Programme, which works with young people who are at risk of criminal exploitation.
Natalie Campbell, Project Manager at the Trust, said: “National Grid helped us with our Summer Programme funding, where we were able to build a project which provided a variety of sessions and residentials for our young people; such as cooking, life skills, sessions around county lines exploitations and a girls group focusing on self-esteem and self-awareness. These sessions all helped to build our young people’s aspirations and have a better summer, whilst exploring different opportunities for them going forward.”
Other groups that have benefited from funding include varied examples such as Friends of Ruskin Park in Lambeth; the 1st Royal Greenwich Scouts; and the Samuel Montagu Youth Centre in Kidbrooke.
Onur Aydemir, Project Director, London Power Tunnels, said: “The community grant programme offers vital support to organisations that play a pivotal role supporting South London communities. Over the past year we have been incredibly proud to help enable some of the amazing work being carried out by dedicated groups operating near to our project. We know that there are so many other deserving causes that would benefit from funding. We’re looking forward to seeing further applications from eligible organisations over the coming months.”
The LPT team is now calling on further groups to get in touch to see if they could be eligible.
If you would like to know more about the CGP, or apply for the next round of funding, you can find detailed information, including eligibility requirements and the application process, on National Grid’s Community Grant Programme page.
More information on London Power Tunnels can be found on the project’s website.