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Local organisations benefit from COVID-19 recovery fund

Eight voluntary and charitable organisations on the Galson Estate will receive grants of up to £3000 from Urras Oighreachd Ghabhsainn to assist with their recovery from COVID-19-associated impacts.

After a successful application to the Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations (SCVO) Communities Recovery Fund, via Highlands and Islands Enterprise, Urras Oighreachd Ghabhsainn (UOG) were granted funding to partner with voluntary and charitable organisations within the Galson Estate. This enabled UOG to administer grant funding that will support community groups in their recovery from the pandemic, with the award able to cover the costs of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), fund health and wellbeing activities and assist with enhanced cleaning procedures, among other projects.

The eight local organisations that will benefit from the funding are: Guth Airson Iarrtasan Nis (GAIN, Eoropie Play Park), Spòrsnis, Taigh Dhonnchaidh, the Cross Free Church Continuing, Carthannas Nis, Comunn Eachdraidh Nis, Lionel School Parent Council, and Clan Macquarrie Community Centre (CMCC).

Donald ‘Ba’ Macdonald of CMCC said of their successful bid for funding:

“CMCC is delighted to have bid successfully for a £3,000 SCVO grant via UOG. The improvements arising from the funding support will help us give our users and volunteers greater confidence that they can use CMCC again and be safe in doing so – hopefully, encouraging attendance, participation and organisation of events once more”.

The CMCC plans for the funding are to fit two turbo air hand-dryers, replace two existing carpeted areas with washable, non-slip vinyl floor coverings, undertake a deep clean of the entire premises, purchase a new floor cleaning machine, and to purchase additional cleaning materials/sanitiser/gloves/masks etc to assist with COVID-19 risk mitigations.”

Simon Amos, Manager of Spòrsnis which also received £3,000, said: “Currently we run our weekday children’s activities at a loss - every day we run at least two kids' sessions and we do this because our primary objective is to encourage health and wellbeing engagement within the community. We employ good coaches and support staff, buy good quality equipment and make sure the facilities are kept clean and in excellent condition. We then charge a very basic fee of just £2 per child per activity, so that everybody is able to attend if they want to. Effectively we subsidise the activities that generate the greatest engagement at Spòrsnis, and we are pretty proud about doing so.

“Finding money to ensure the longevity of health and wellbeing activities is a challenge, so it is really good news when the community landowners support the project and provide funding, effectively helping to continue the engagement of local kids in these types of activities - football, badminton, shinty, Tchoukeball and basketball.”


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