Community Investment and CSA
Community investment can be an important source of capital for community supported agriculture (CSA) ventures. It involves members and supporters of a CSA venture investing money through the purchase of bonds or shares.
The Co-operative Community Fund
Lush Charity Pot
Grants on line
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CSAs could be eligible for RDPE funding and the good news is that it looks set to continue, despite a climate of other funding cutbacks. Apparently there are various "measures" under which funding is allocated, some are only for existing farms or farm family members but there are also funding measures for social and community projects and for commercial enterprises in rural areas. Each English region handles the RDPE slightly differently but its definitely worth projects getting in touch with their local Regional Development Agency to find out more.
Esmee Fairbairn Foundation
The Esme Fairbairn Foundation has a long standing interest in food, particularly its sustainable production and distribution.For more information go to:
Awards for All
Awards for All England is a simple small grants scheme making awards of between £300 and £10,000. The Awards for All programme aims to help improve local communities and the lives of people most in need. The application form is short and simple. Email them the completed form. You will find out if you are successful within six weeks.
UnLtd is a charity which supports social entrepreneurs - people with vision, drive, commitment and passion who want to change the world for the better. They do this by providing a complete package of funding and support, to help these individuals make their ideas a reality. UnLtd is one of the only UK organisations to provide an individually tailored combination of cash funding, practical support and networking opportunities. They provide several levels of awards ranging from £500 to £60k. A number of CSA projects have already been successful in securing a grant from UnLtd.
A company called Vegware which makes packaging from plants, is providing community groups that promote sustainability in the widest sense with individual grants of £20-200 per month. The fund is intended to contribute to core running costs and act as a basis from which to either focus on their chosen task, or apply for project grants. If you are involved in enhancing any aspect of your local environment, whether built or natural, or involved in community projects, please get in touch.
Funding Central is a website for all third sector organisations, including community groups, providing access to thousands of funding and finance opportunities, plus a wealth of tools and resources supporting organisations to develop sustainable income strategies appropriate to their needs.
Parish Councils have a pot of money for local projects - contact your local councillor and speak to them about your project and ask if they can support you. We were given £500 to buy a water pump and pipes for our well, so now the garden is off-grid. If you don't ask, you don't get - what's the worst that can happen?!
Healthy Start, the Department of Health's new scheme to help pregnant women and children under four in low-income families eat healthily; provides vouchers which can be exchanged at any outlet that sells liquid cow's milk, fresh fruit and vegetables. Visit the site under Related links on the right of this page.
Grant-giving trusts are listed in The Directory for Social Change. Libraries usually have a copyof this, or have the facility on a Fund Finder CD-Rom or are registered to use the online service www.dsc.org.uk, T: 020 7209 5151
Ecology Building Society
The Ecology is a mutual building society dedicated to improving the environment bypromoting sustainable housing and sustainable communities.
18 Station Road, Cross Hills, Keighley, West Yorkshire BD20 7EH
T: 0845 674 5566 E:firstname.lastname@example.org www.ecology.co.uk
More funding information
The Federation of City Farms and Community Gardens also has a number of funders listed on their website which may be worth exploring.
Local Food fund
Funding is available through the Big Lottery's Local Food fund, a £50 million programme to distribute lottery grants to a variety of food-related projects, helping make locally grown food accessible and affordable within the community.
First stage applications have now closed.