Communities across Staffordshire are set to benefit from an extra £91,500 funding for projects that help tackle climate change or protect the environment.
The Staffordshire County Council climate action fund, now in its third year, to date has supported 217 projects providing £129,000 in funding.
Among the projects funded and making a difference are a community church in Rugeley which received £1,000 to upgrade to LED lighting in its sports hall.
Chris Fielding, manager of Rugeley Community Church said: “The funding we received to upgrade to LED lighting in our sports hall has made a dramatic impact.
“The old metal halide fittings were inefficient, costly to run, uneven in their light distribution and did not provide sufficient light levels to meet modern standards for sports or events. The new lighting addresses every single one of those issues, reducing our carbon footprint whilst transforming the hall into a bright, welcoming space for the wide range of activities we provide or host.”
A repair café in the Staffordshire Moorlands which helps the community to repair their broken items received a grant of £500. The grant helped purchase a PAT testing kit and training for its volunteers which will help to keep electrical items safely in use for longer and helps reduce the amount of waste.
The funding is open to not-for profit organisations including charities, societies, voluntary and community groups, parish councils and schools. Each councillor has an amount of funding to allocate to a chosen scheme.
Projects that focus on reducing energy, such as changing to more energy efficient appliances and lighting, or those that help reduce the use of fossil fuel heating are all likely to be considered for funding. Other initiatives like tree planting and waste reduction will also be considered as high priorities.
Simon Tagg, Staffordshire County Council’s cabinet member with responsibility for Climate Change said: ”Tackling climate change remains one of the county council’s top priorities and we are working hard to reach net zero by 2050.
“This is our third round of funding and we’ve seen some fantastic projects and work from our schools, voluntary groups, and charities.
“Last year I funded the Newcastle Green Wall Demonstrator project, which was an ivy wall by Newcastle bus station which will be monitored to see its impact on traffic pollution. Through these projects, and by all working together, we can make a real difference in tackling climate change.
“The funding is being allocated on a first come first served basis, so I would urge community groups to speak to their local councillor, check if they are eligible and make an application.”
Each county councillor has £1,500 to give out in their area and a minimum of £500 per application applies. Groups can apply to more than one county councillor and receive a total grant of up to £3,000.
To apply, organisations will first need to speak with their county councillor and then apply online at www.staffordshire.gov.uk/climatefund