Staffordshire Community Funds
Each area in Staffordshire now has it’s own Community Fund, with a seperate fund for Penkridge, although this area is also covered by the South Staffordshire Community Fund.
Whilst not a community fund in the strict sense, the High Sheriff Fund works in a similar way, but covers the whole county of Staffordshire.
A community fund is a permanent endowment fund that will distribute grants to that area specifically. All donations to that particular fund are pooled together and invested according to Charity Commission guidelines. Each year the interest is given away as grants to individuals, community groups and local charities. As only the interest is given away it means that the fund will exist forever, meaning there will always be a source of grant funding available to the many needy individuals and community groups in the area. The aim of each fund is to raise £500,000 over the next five years. If only 5% is given away each year, it means that we can make grant awards to each area of £25,000 per year, forever. Of course, as the fund grows, it will be worth more each year, which means that the amount of money we can give away will be more.
Aside from donations from local people and local businesses we can also add dormant funds to the local community funds. These are funds that might have been set up many years ago for various causes. Due to national and regional developments there may be no need for these funds any longer – certain funds may be directed towards things that are now financed by the Government or the local council, or the need may not exist any longer. These funds may only be worth a few hundred pounds each and can offer very little at today’s costs and prices, but when they are added to other donations, like in a community fund, it means that they can still continue to benefit the geographical area for which they were intended.
Each year there are various fundraising efforts made to increase the size of each fund, meaning people in an area can raise money for a local charity where they can see the benefits of their work first hand. Often, the mayor of each area will add some of the money raised in their tenure to the local community fund, ensuring that the area continues to benefit from their hard work long after they have left office.
Each community page to the left will give further details about that fund specifically and details of how you can donate. The benefit of these funds is that every penny really does count – it’s all about the strength of a community pulling together – and it’s surprising how quickly those pennies mount up. It will also give details of people who have already contributed to the fund, along with the people who will make decisions locally, (Donor Advisors). There’s also a link to apply for a grant from the fund.