Relaunch of the Community Investment Fund
Urras Oighreachd Ghabhsainn is delighted to have relaunched its Community Investment Fund, which opened on Wednesday 1st June. The announcement was made at the UOG Business Centre in front of a range of previous applicants and local organisations.
The first part of the relaunch was a celebration of Community Investment Fund achievements from 2014 to 2020. Over this period, 105 applications were approved from 56 organisations totalling £394,000 of grants. Leverage was an impressive £7 for every £1 distributed by UOG, with grants ranging from £420 up to £40,000. The Fund had become well known and appreciated by the community, underlining its effectiveness as an important social investment vehicle.
The new look Fund has been simplified and streamlined in line with feedback received from previous applicants. The main products offered now comprise a Small Grant and Development Grant, plus a Supporting Growth package for more strategic initiatives. Small Grants are expected to be up to £2,000 involving straightforward applications and minimal documentation. Beyond this, a Development Grant is a more flexible type of assistance that can be tailored to suit specific circumstances above £2,000. Any organisations interested in a Development Grant are strongly advised to contact UOG before submitting a formal application in order to offer the best chance of success. UOG has also highlighted the potential for longer-term relationship agreement where organisations have an ongoing programme of development activity over a period to avoid submitting consecutive applications.
Another response to feedback is the appointment of a dedicated officer to proactively assist applicants in preparing applications and to monitoring project delivery after approval as well as assessing applications. Marie Gillies, already well known to many who are in regular contact with UOG, has migrated across to take up this role for 2.5 days per week. She can be contacted via email@example.com or 01851 850393.
Agnes Rennie, Chair of UOG, commented “We are delighted to have reached the stage where we can relaunch the Fund. Clearly, the cable failure was a major blow but we have bounced back once again and, with additional reserves now in place, directors and staff have the confidence to re-start the redistribution of monies across the Estate. Following a review and consultation with relevant parties, the Fund has been refreshed to better address the needs of the community and the many organisations that are active within it. We are aware that various organisations have been patiently awaiting this relaunch and we look forward to receiving a range of interesting and exciting applications in the months ahead.”