The Jersey Government’s micro-grant scheme, Connect Me: Connecting Our Communities, has reopened for applications for projects which give residents the opportunity to participate in cultural or physical activities.
During the first round of funding in 2022, more than 40 initiatives received micro-grants of up to £5,000 so that they could establish or expand projects which could improve the mental or physical health of Islanders who may have been affected by the pandemic, and related isolation.
Applications are open until 19 May 2023 via an online application form.
Minister for Social Security, Deputy Elaine Millar said: “The first round of the Connect Me: Connecting Our Communities initiative was hugely successful and we have seen many fantastic examples of initiatives that have been able to happen because of these micro-grants. They have made a real difference to our community.
“The pandemic may be behind us, but the effects of isolation are still here and that’s why this scheme is so important. Different people are attracted to different activities and the wider the variety and access to them, the more likely we are to reach people who are struggling with isolation. We have already seen considerable success, but this is just the beginning.”
All organisations with experience in providing opportunities for Islanders to participate in arts or physical activities can apply. Funds will not support the usual operational budget of any applicant, but will help them to expand them.
Each project will be considered by an applications panel against the scheme’s aims:
- To engage a large cross section of the Jersey community in arts or physical activity aimed at enhancing sustainable wellbeing over the next two years
- To increase participation in the arts or physical activity across the whole population; especially amongst groups most impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic
- To provide a means for Government to progress towards the delivery of the strategic objectives outlined in the:
- Common Strategic Policy, Government Plan
- Arts Strategy
- Heritage Strategy
- Inspiring an Active Jersey Strategy
- To stimulate the creative economy by providing coordinated work for creatives and arts practitioners
Initiatives which have previously benefitted from the scheme include Project Bounce (pictured) – a women’s only basketball league; Age Concern, Jersey and Taking Part, Making Art – an art initiative from Mencap.