The last few months have seen Maryland’s first Christmas tree, and a burgeoning community group going from strength to strength, to say nothing of a resident-led clear-up campaign. Inspired by Seyi’s efforts, and by the local energy there, all three of us were talking about how we might encourage some more community activity around Maryland.
We know that one of the key ways that we as a Council can support and encourage community groups is through our small grants: ‘Newham – Let’s Get the Party Started‘ , and Newham – ‘Go For It’ grants. The first is a small grant, normally up to £250, to organise a community event of some kind. Street parties are a good example, but they have been used for many other different kinds of events including Play Streets, a NCT small children’s Olympic party, arts trail participative events, and much more. ‘Go for it’ is where you can apply for ‘seed funding’ to get a group or a regular event up and running. If you wanted to establish a youth group, for example, or a social event for elderly residents, you could apply to this fund to get yourself off the ground, including information about how you plan to fund your group in the longer-term.
So, we thought that it’s all very well offering these small grants, but what we need to do is a bit more of getting out and talking to people about them. With that in mind, we are trialling a pop-up session, in Maryland, where Seyi and I will be available, with an officer, to talk to anyone who wants to come in with an idea.
So, this coming Tuesday the 9th February, we will be at Nooks on Leytonstone High Road, between 5 and 7pm. We will be armed with a sheaf of application forms, accompanied by Glennette who works at the Gate, and we will be available to chat to anyone who wants to pop in. If you are a Maryland resident and you think you might be interested in running something locally, please do pop in and see us. It doesn’t matter how well-developed your idea is – you might have a fully-fledged idea and want a form, or you may just have a general desire to do ‘something’ and want to pop in to discuss with us what it might look like.
If you would like to pop-in and see us, we would love to meet you.