Local charities benefit from UWE's Better Together Fund

Issue date: 20 January 2011

The 'Better Together Fund', UWE's charitable fund, is inviting groups and charities in Bristol to apply for grants. The deadline for applications is 9 February 2011.

Grants of up to £3,000 are available for local and international charitable projects, and applications are open to UWE staff, students, and alumni. Smaller local charities that could benefit from volunteer and financial support are invited to apply by teaming up with a member of UWE staff, student or alumni. For more information or to apply, please visit the project website www.uwe.ac.uk/btf

The Better Together Fund is a new charitable initiative launched in 2009 to offer alumni, staff and students the opportunity to support projects which enrich the local and wider community, help students facing financial hardship, and enhance university life and the student experience at UWE.

In 2010 the Better Together fund awarded over £30,000 to support 11 projects and causes in the Bristol area.

Among the projects to receive funding last year was The Bear-Pit Improvement Group, led by Henry Shaftoe, a Lecturer in Planning and Architecture at UWE, and supported by the Bristol Civic Society and People's Republic of Stokes Croft. Through direct interventions and liaison with Bristol City Council, the group hopes to achieve much-needed improvements to make the St James Barton roundabout area not only safer, but a desirable space to spend time in. Ideas for making quick improvements may include: refreshment carts and moveable seating, art works, staging for performers, murals, allotments or growing spaces, art and craft stalls, play events, markets, festival events and car boot sales.

Henry Shaftoe said:“This grant has been really useful in getting this project off the ground. This is a key pedestrian space, yet one of the most feared and disliked in the centre of Bristol. Hundreds of people pass through here every day. We needed funding to start the process of improvements that would get people's attention and show them what is possible. Now we are hoping to move things forward with some longer term ideas, which should ensure this becomes a convivial, rather than fearful, place for the citizens of Bristol.”

Emma Sambrook, Director of Development & Alumni Relations at UWE says, “The Better Together Fund is already helping small local groups in Bristol and we want to make sure those that can benefit from the fund know it exists and can apply. The fund is entirely supported by donations and as well as helping students facing hardship, we support community projects, and educational and extra-curricular activities around the University. The money raised is dispersed annually and applications for community grants are open to staff, students and alumni of UWE.”

Other charities receiving grants last year included:

Art+power, (enabling disabled and socially excluded artists to develop their practice);
The Art of Numbers, (partnership between UWE and Begbrook Primary School in Stapleton, to raise attainment and confidence in numeracy); Brisfest (community carpentry project); Bristol Link with Beira (writing a history of the 20 year link with Bristol); Frenchay Parent and Toddler Group Summer Fun Day for children; Karma Active school Martial Arts; Dance fitness and Multi Sport activities; The Likwenu Foundation improving the quality of life and education for the people of Likwenu Primary school in Malawi; Kick Start (award-winning personal development programmes for young people); The University of Local Knowledge (ULK) public arts project in Knowle West and South Bristol.


Editor's notes

The total amount awarded from UWE's Better Together Fund last year was £36,000, and grants of up to £5000 were offered.

Full details of the charities which benefited last year as available from the Press Office.

FFI: Jane Kelly or Mary Price, Press Officers


Tel: 0117 32 82208

E-mail: Jane.Kelly@uwe.ac.ukor Mary.Price@uwe.ac.uk

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