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Kirk’s £2.4 million investment in communities

Over the past four years the Church of Scotland’s Parish Development Fund has granted almost £2.4 million in awards for a range of projects across Scotland, helping local people make a real difference in their communities.

Commenting on the awards, the fund’s convener, Martin Fair, said: “Time and again in the course of our work we come across people who are surprised and delighted that so many churches are engaged in such a huge variety of work across Scotland, whether it’s a befriending scheme for old folk living alone, a project offering drama, art and film-making opportunities for young people, or a family project offering support for women and kids. The Parish Development Fund affirms the imagination and commitment of local people who hope that communities can become better places to live.”

Grant awards made by the fund over recent years include:

– £45,000 towards the running costs of the Route 81 Youth Project in Garelochhead, Argyll;

– £41,000 towards the costs of a family support project in Dundee;

£40,000 towards the costs of a community arts project in Clydebank;

£18,000 towards the costs of the Church in the Mount Befriending Service for older people in Mount Florida, Glasgow.

“We believe that every young person has potential and we therefore want to encourage them at every opportunity”, explained Alastair Duncan, minister in Garelochhead and a trustee of the Route 81 Youth Project which has benefited from the Fund. “We nominated one of our young people for a Strathclyde Youth Club Association “Award of Merit” because of his enthusiasm and participation in the project. Some people had said that this guy would never get any awards – but he did get the award in Glasgow City Chambers. This kind of thing is a huge encouragement to us all because we feel we’re reaching young folk that other people are inclined to write off.”

The fund’s report to the General Assembly gives details on a wide range of projects supported by the fund, explaining that local communities are able to lever significant amounts of additional funding from charitable trusts and others to support their work.

• Full story at the Church of Scotland.

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