Keepmoat offers boost for community projects

David Carmichael, Partnerships Director for Keepmoat Homes Yorkshire, Faye Duckett, Housing Market Renewal Development Officer for Barnsley Metropolitan Borough Council and Ian Lax, Goldthorpe Reform W.M.C. Junior Football Club secretary.
David Carmichael, Partnerships Director for Keepmoat Homes Yorkshire, Faye Duckett, Housing Market Renewal Development Officer for Barnsley Metropolitan Borough Council and Ian Lax, Goldthorpe Reform W.M.C. Junior Football Club secretary.

A selection of local community projects has received a much needed financial boost with the first allocation of the £100,000 Keepmoat Community Fund, an investment programme delivered alongside the Seasons housing scheme.

The first allocation totalled £18,306 and coincided with the first stage of development at Seasons, a partnership between Keepmoat Homes (part of the Keepmoat Group), Barnsley Metropolitan Borough Council, Chevin Housing Group, Berneslai Homes and the Homes and Communities Agency which will eventually deliver 875 new homes over the next 15 – 18 years.

Between September and November 2011 local groups were invited to submit an application to be considered for the funding. The successful bids attended a fund awarding event at the Seasons show home, marking the first birthday of the development.

In attendance was Ian Ball, project manager for the Hickleton Youth Project, which received £500 from the fund. Ian said: “Our project engages young people in educational recreation through the youth club, which provides programmes such as healthy living, cook and eat, sports activities and arts and crafts.

“We give the young people empowerment and responsibility through a youth council which decides what programmes and activities are run. This provides practical education about democracy and how choices can affect positive change for individuals and the wider community.

“The funding we received helped to fund a trip to London during which the young people visited Downing Street and enjoyed a tour of the Houses of Parliament, learning more about the importance of democracy and its impact on people’s lives. The trip had a huge impact on the group and everyone came away full of ideas to improve the youth project and better themselves in the future.”

Also successful was the Goldthorpe Reform W.M.C. Junior Football Club, receiving £500. Ian Lax, the club’s secretary, commented: “The club is run by a group of dedicated volunteers and all our funding comes through donations. The money from the Keepmoat Community Fund will pay for new kits, training equipment and our annual prize giving night.

“We have four teams and provide coaching to over 60 local kids, keeping them fit and healthy and building respect in one another and the wider community. We’re delighted to receive this funding as it will help us to continue this good work.”

David Carmichael, Partnerships Director for Keepmoat Homes Yorkshire, was on hand to present the projects with their well deserved funding. He said: “We’ve worked closely with the Thurnscoe Alliance to select the projects that will make the most positive contribution to the local community, enhance the lives of residents and help attract interest and further investment in the area.

“We’re confident that the funding will have a significant impact on the lives of people in the community that can be felt for a long time. Keepmoat will be redeveloping the housing here for the next 15 – 18 years so the presentation of cheques today represents the first stage of a long-term commitment to investment.”

The first phase of Seasons, known as ‘Springside’, is now underway and comprises 160 properties, including two and three bedroom homes, available to buy, rent or part own through shared ownership. More information about the site and the range of homes on offer can be found at Keepmoat Homes