Grants are now available from the Clackmannanshire and Stirling Environment Trust (CSET) to create greener communities.
The Trust awards grants to local groups to help them implement projects that improve the environment and provide a benefit to both the local community and the general public.
To date in Clackmannanshire, the Trust has distributed £94,500 to 18 different groups to complete 24 projects worth £199,500 to the local area. A further 12 groups have been awarded just over £120,000 for ongoing projects estimated to be valued at over £500,000.
Many types of groups across Clackmannanshire have benefited from funding to carry out a wide range of projects.
Alloa rugby pitches are a popular recreational area, used by both the rugby club and local residents. However, drainage was a real issue with the area often under water. So Alloa Rugby Club applied for and received two awards from the Trust, £4,500 in 2009 and a further £2882 in 2010, to carry out the much need drainage improvement works.
Club Secretary Graeme Kerr said: "Without the grant from CSET, Alloa rugby pitches would be un-playable as they would be under water because of the serious drainage issue. The grants from the Trust allowed us to successfully resolve this, and I'm happy to say that despite the recent wet weather no games have had to be postponed because of pitch problems."
The Delph Pond Forum in Tullibody were awarded £2365 in 2009 as a contribution towards the provision of picnic benches and seats for use by the community in the public park.
Local resident and forum member Janette McGowan said: "The Delph is a well used and well known recreational area but suffered from a lack of facilities. The benches and seats are a boon for the area and have been well used by the local community."
The Devonvale Hall In Tillicoultry has been run by the community-based Devonvale Hall Company Ltd since 2005. The group continues to work to restore the hall to its former glory, and while this is an ongoing issue, the company were more than happy to receive £2500 in June 2008 to upgrade the lightening and a further £13,663 in March 2010 for brand new seats.
Tillicoultry Primary School was awarded £4000 in 2011 towards constructing a footpath around the school grounds and through the section of community woodland. Head teacher Patricia Paterson has welcomed the improvement to the grounds, particularly as it allows greater accessibility for both the pupils and the local community irrespective of the weather!
Given the positive impacts the Trust has made so far, chairman Terry Barlow wants to encourage more groups to seek funding from the Trust. He said: "The community are at the heart of the Clackmannanshire and Stirling Environment Trust and as such the Trust has used the Landfill Community Fund monies it receives, to support projects that the local people want and need."
Clackmannanshire Council's Portfolio Holder for Sustainability Councillor Eddie Carrick added: "I would like to urge as many local groups as possible to consider applying for this funding. This funding will be able to help some grass-roots schemes get off the ground, make improvements to the built and natural environment and generally improve the quality of life in our communities."
Applying for funding is straight forward, as any not-for-profit organisation that wants to carry out a project that benefits the local community, improves the local environment and can demonstrate public access can apply. Groups can apply at any time for a small grant of up to £2000 to implement a project costing no more than £4000. If you are considering a larger project this year you need to apply by the following deadlines 2nd March, 11th May or 12th October 2012.
For further details or to discuss a project proposal please contact from the Trust's manager Audrey Morrison on 01786 484611 or by email on email@example.com