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Drum Corps celebrates as Project Aspire awards its 60th community grant

Project Aspire, our on-going plan to help tackle social inequality in the borough, recently awarded its 60th grant to a local community group. The Cadence Drum and Bugle Corps is a local performing arts charity which helps develop musical talent and teamwork. So far nearly £90,000 has been allocated to community-led schemes which help boost health and wellbeing, build community spirit and improve skills and access to employment.

Project Aspire's The Fair Before Christmas Cllr Iseult Roche, Lead Cllr for Project Aspire, Health, Safeguarding and Sport says: "Project Aspire is here because we believe every person matters - this fundamentally underpins all we do.  It's about working with our diverse range of residents to strengthen the community spirit that makes Guildford a place where everyone is truly valued. It's great to see how much we can achieve when we all work together and I'm delighted that we have already supported over 60 community-led schemes, both large and small, which all have a positive impact on our local community."

Carol McFarlane from the Opportunities Communities project adds: "Thanks to funding provided by Project Aspire, the Opportunities Group was able to deliver a course to support people who needed to update their IT skills before returning to work, many after taking a break to raise a family. Many of those who took the course are now back in the workplace with renewed confidence and skills."

Project Aspire works with local communities across the borough, including in Park Barn, Westborough, Ash, Merrow, Stoughton, Bellfields  and Stoke to offer funding for community projects and initiatives that benefit local residents. Projects supported by grant funding so far include:

  • Ash Dementia Alliance
  • Bushy Hill Community Club
  • The Matrix Trust Young Leaders Course
  • Ash Tales - community outreach project with the Yvonne Arnaud Theatre
  • Bushy Hill Junior School - Growing for Good project
  • Guildford City Youth Project
  • Ash Youth Centre - music project

Other funding has helped support the themes of:

  • health and wellbeing - exercise groups for the over 60s, Saturday Sports Club, American Football
  • work experience and skills - IT skills to help get people back into work, the Kane FM work experience project
  • supporting the community - social groups, a whist club, Cub Scouts

Residents who would like to start their own group, or who have an idea to help build community spirit, are invited to get in touch with the Project Aspire team on 01483 444856 or by emailing projectaspiregrants@guildford.gov.uk

Published on Thursday 14 December.