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Our ‘In This Together - Community Matters Fund’ hits £1 Million with new grants for festive community support

With the festive season approaching at the end of a difficult year, we are extending our ‘In This Together – Community Matters Fund’ to offer help to the most vulnerable people affected by COVID-19 and in need of additional support at this time.

We are inviting charities, community groups and local authorities to apply for awards of up to £1,500 to support initiatives such as those offering food and clothing parcels and hot meals, as well as gifts and support to vulnerable children, adults and the elderly over the winter holidays.

Phil Swift, Western Power Distribution CEO, said: “We all know that the festive period is going to be different this year but, for some, the effects of the pandemic will hit particularly hard and make this time incredibly difficult. I’m delighted we’re able to extend our commitment and play our role in supporting our communities through this challenging time.

“Our grants have already delivered a welcome boost to a wide range of organisations from large city hospitals to smaller community groups. As winter approaches, we are recognising initiatives that work hard to spread a little festive cheer and practical support amongst those that need it most. By the end of 2020, WPD will have contributed £1million to many immensely worthy causes, and I can say – hand on heart – that every penny will have been money well spent.”

To date, grant-funded initiatives have directly benefited thousands of people impacted by the emotional, social and economic impact of COVID-19 across the breadth of our network. AGE UK in Lincoln and South Lincolnshire received funds to deliver food and essential supplies to the elderly, and a telephone befriending service to those who feel lonely or isolated during the pandemic restrictions. The Basement Project in Bromsgrove received nearly £10k towards its work in supporting young people who are homeless or at risk of homelessness. The fund helped to supply food, as well as equip support workers with laptops and headsets to deliver advice and support from home.

In Wales, the Rhymney Valley Foodbank received funds to help them meet the extra demand from local families, while Mid Devon Mobility was able to deliver essential services and telephone befriending to around 600 vulnerable, elderly and isolated people in the community.

Applications for the ‘In This Together – Community Matters Fund’ are welcome from registered charities, community groups and councils within the WPD distribution network area.

Phil Swift, concluded: “I’m incredibly proud that we’ve been able to adapt our business practices and keep our 6,500-strong team safe at work, keep energy flowing across our network, and support vulnerable customers through our Priority Services Register. With this extension to our funding campaign, we hope to further this commitment to more people that need help within our network reach. We are ready to welcome applications and would urge local good causes to apply as soon as they can.”

The application form is available here and the closing date for submissions is Sunday 15 November. Applicants will be notified as to whether their application has been successful or not by the end of November.


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