Hardship grants supporting people through the winter

Community groups and organisations across Cumbria are being encouraged to apply for funding to help people who are struggling financially.

Working in partnership with Cumbria County Council, Cumbria Community Foundation is offering financial support to charitable organisations that are helping people through the cost of living crisis this winter.

The Community Hardship Fund is providing grants of up to £10,000. The money can be used for offering practical skills such as budgeting and cooking courses or to buy equipment for community lunches. The grants will also cover costs to sustain a service for example: foodbanks, food pantries and hubs, and additional staff costs to increase activities.

Brathay Trust received £9,988 to provide struggling families in the Barrow area with a slow cooker, food, recipe cards and activities for children to increase the family’s cookery knowledge as part of the Take and Make programme.

Laura FitzGerald, Operations Manager at Brathay Trust, said: "This programme will support families to be more fuel efficient and eat healthy, nutritious, and full meals. 60 families facing adversity due to the cost-of-living crisis will be provided with a new slow cooker and 10 weeks’ worth of recipe cards and ingredients needed to cook a nutritious meal."

To date, £74,000 has been awarded including a grant to Howgill Family Centre to provide essential household items, Home to Work to support its healthy food growing project, Age UK Carlisle and Eden to deliver 300 winter warmth packs to older people and the Rock Youth Project to support low-income families by offering regular cooking classes.

Annalee Holliday, Senior Grants, Programmes and Communications Officer, said: "We know there is increased need across the county with food banks running out of food and more and more people unable to afford to eat or heat their homes to a safe level. This new fund will support projects that are keeping people fed and warm and provide additional practical support and advice to help people cope throughout this period of great hardship."

Applications to the Community Hardship Fund can be submitted at any time and groups should hear the outcome of their application within 10 working days.

To apply for funding, visit www.cumbriafoundation.org/fund/community-hardship-fund or

Email Annalee Holiday at annalee@cumbriafoundation.org or telephone: 01900 825760.