Grant aid for community 'Warm Spaces' in Mid and East Antrim

Eighty-two applicants shared a budget of £82,916 allocated by Mid and East Antrim Borough Council for Her late Majesty’s platinum jubilee events, councillors have been told.

A report to the council’s Policy and Resources Committee said 292 applicants received awards for projects with a total of £632,249 overall distributed through the Grant Support Scheme 2022/23.

A second round opened in October with a further budget of £75,000. To date, 103 applications have received funding amounting to just over £58k.

A Covid-19 Community Recovery Warm Spaces Scheme which opened the same month received 12 applications with awards of almost £6,000 approved.

Holy Trinity Church, Carrickfergus. Pic: Google

Among those to benefit is Holy Trinity Church, Carrickfergus, which will be providing a “warm room” weekly on Wednesday mornings until the end of March.

The application said: “There is a cost of living crisis in Carrickfergus resulting in unprecedented pressures on people already in poverty and we believe in the Prospect area of our parish.

“This winter, despite the support given by Government, many people in our local area may well be having to make tough decisions about food or heat.”

Feel Safe

As well as refreshments and activities, the grant will be used to heat the building to “provide community and make all who attend feel safe and warm”.

The Inter-Ethnic Forum Mid and East Antrim plans to provide warm spaces for Filipino and Muslim communities where they can avail of “warmth, refreshments and companionship”.

Ballee Community Association in Ballymena is planning a ‘Warm Space’ project through which a hot meal will be provided fortnightly.

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Michelle Weir, Local Democracy Reporter