Voluntary groups invited to bid for £18m Scottish Executive community funding

The Scottish Executive is injecting £18m into the
country’s most deprived communities allowing voluntary and
community organisations to bid only if they are commercially
competitive, announced the Scottish Executive, writes
Shirley Kumar

In an attempt to change the investment culture of the sector, the
Executive wants organisations to become “self sufficient
businesses,” where they are able to make a profit that will
be reinvested back into the communities they serve.

It hopes to help 500 organisations develop their services over a
two-year period with greater emphasis on allowing the sector to
gain equal access to service delivery contracts.

Priority will be given to projects that will regenerate the most
deprived communities in Scotland and services for and run by young

Scottish Executive communities minister Margaret Curran said:
“I’m clear this is not about handouts for failing
businesses, or for giving one sector preference over another.
It’s about laying out a structure of support to drive forward
progress and about supporting those who really deliver on the

The funding will be managed by a new Social Economy Unit under
Communities Scotland and is expected to be available from

It includes a £16m Direct Investment Fund, with £12m
allocated to medium to large sized organisations. Around 70 per
cent of the fund will be devoted to capital investment projects,
which will allow organisations to gain access alternative sources
of funding.

A £4m Seedcorn Fund will allow smaller, community focused
organisations to develop their services and the Social
Entrepreneurs Fund will provide grants of up to £5,000 to
enable individual entrepreneurs to turn local ideas into live

Around £1m has also been allocated for training and £1m
to fund a support programme.


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