Charities and voluntary groups working to address issues such as antisocial behaviour, drugs and hate crime in Devon and Cornwall can now apply for grants of up to £10,000, thanks to funding from the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC).
The grant scheme is being delivered in partnership with Devon Community Foundation (DCF) and Cornwall Community Foundation (CCF) and aims to benefit small and medium-sized organisations whose work contributes to the Commissioner’s Police and Crime Plan.
The Commissioner works to enable safer, more resilient communities and this scheme aims to empower smaller voluntary, community and social enterprise (VCSE) organisations to play a role in both progressing and informing PCC priorities. The Commissioner is particularly keen to support community groups led by or working with minoritised communities, those working in rural or coastal communities and those facing cost of living challenges.
Alison Hernandez, Police and Crime Commissioner for Devon, Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly, said: “Antisocial behaviour, drug use and other criminal activities affect people all across our force area, not just those living in highly populated areas, causing feelings of fear and distress in our communities.
“Our rural and remote communities by their very nature can feel isolated and unseen, and I want those residents to know that I am as committed to helping them feel safe as I am those in our larger towns and cities.
“The cost of living has hit many in our communities hard and it’s vital that support is also out there for those struggling to make ends meet.
"I am making this funding available to support groups in Devon and Cornwall who are working hard to tackle drug use and antisocial behaviour, as well as violence and road safety - all issues I have made priorities in my Police and Crime Plan. I urge any organisation that is working to create safe, resilient and connected communities to apply for a grant before the November deadline.”
Philippa Knott Kos, head of grants at Devon Community Foundation, said: “We’re delighted to see the Commissioner proactively seeking to support groups working for people facing particular disadvantage and those hit by rising costs within Devon’s communities, and trusting them to create their own solutions to the problems they face. At DCF we’re committed to ensuring the funding reaches those who need it the most, and can make best use of it.”
Tamas Haydu, CEO of Cornwall Community Foundation said: “We are grateful to the Police and Crime Commissioner for their generous funding to enable us to continue to support community groups and organisations in Cornwall who support people and help to reduce antisocial behaviour, addiction and violence."
Cornwall Community Foundation have two funds available - the Police Property Act Fund, focusing on preventing crime and reducing anti-social behaviour in rural and coastal areas, and the Police & Crime Commissioner’s Community Grants which focuses on projects related to anti-social behaviour, drugs and victims of crime through all of Cornwall.
Devon’s grants schemes, PCC Safer Communities, along with the two CCF funds, opened on Monday, September 18, and groups have until Wednesday, November 8 to apply.
Grants of up to £10,000 are available in Devon, and up to £5,000 in Cornwall. This funding can include contributions towards running costs to help organisations become more sustainable in the face of rising bills and expenses.
The PCC has been working with DCF and CCF since 2021 to deliver grant schemes to benefit local residents.
To date, more than £250,000 has been distributed in Devon thanks to funding from the PCC, and £300,000 across Cornwall.
This has enabled both DCF and CCF to award more than 60 grants within each county, to groups and charities working to connect communities and policing, prevent and deter crime, and protect people at risk of abuse.