New Support Programmes for Community Rights
First Steps Programme
Are you interested in developing practical action plans to improve your neighbourhood or housing estate? The Community Development
Foundation in partnership with Locality will be supporting 115 communities to decide what they do and don't like in their area, what
steps are needed to make positive changes, and which local partners they need to bring on board to make it happen.
The programme is aimed at small community groups. It offers practical support and grants to help develop community action plans: groups can get £2500 to work with others to help write their plan, as well as access to skills training, and a mentor to see them through the process. Participants will also be plugged into networks of other people who are doing similar things.
Groups can apply from 1 April 2015 and the closing date is 8 May 2015 so if you're interested head over to
www.mycommunity.org.uk/programme/first-steps to find out more
Community Economic Development Programme
The Community Economic Development (CED) programme is a new initiative designed for local community groups and organisations who want to take a lead in shaping their economies for the benefit of local communities. If you belong to a community that wants to work towards seeing real economic change in your area - whether this is in food, housing, finance, energy or any other local economic opportunities - then the CED programme will set you on the right path.
The programme provides specialist support, advice and grant funding to help residents, local business and public sector organisations to work together to develop the best ideas to strengthen the local economy.
Whether that's working on a strategy to promote local spending, exploring the possibility of developing a rural broadband co-operative, or working with key organisations to promote community-led housing, this programme wants passionate people who are committed to working together on a local economic plan that can deliver real local benefits.
For more information visit
Neighbourhood Planning Programme
Do you belong to a community that would like to shape its future growth and development? For example, have a say over where new homes, shops and offices are built, where green spaces are protected, and what new buildings look like. If so, you can do this by developing a Neighbourhood Plan, which is used in judging planning applications and has the same weight in law as a Local Planning Authority's Local Plan.
The 2015-18 Neighbourhood Planning Support Programme is now open to help you to do this. The Programme provides grants of up to £8,000 for all neighbourhood planning groups, and those groups facing more difficult issues can
access expert help from planning specialists, and may also be eligible for a further £6,000 in grant. A phone and web advice service is also available alongside a range of resources to help groups progress their plans.
For more information please visit
Community Buildings and Housing Programme
Do you belong to a Community that would like to bring forward new community buildings or housing, and obtain planning permission for it, without having to apply to the Local Planning Authority through the normal planning application process? For example , this could include getting permission for community-led developments such as affordable housing for rent, community facilities such as a children's playground, or the conversion of disused buildings into community facilities. If so, you can do this by preparing a 'Community Right to Build Order' and the 2015-18 Community Buildings & Housing Support Programme is available to help you to do this.
The Programme provides two types of support - the Community Buildings Pre-Feasibility Grant of up to £10,000 and the Community Buildings Project Support Grant of up to £40,000. These will help you to refine and assess the viability of your proposal, and will help you with collecting evidence and information needed to take the project forward through to getting permission.
The Programme is now open so if you are interested please visit http://mycommunity.org.uk/programme/community-buildings-housing/