Calling all groups who do vital work helping people in their communities. The Western Morning News has joined forces with Devon and Cornwall Community Foundations to launch a campaign distributing much-deserved funds to Devon and Cornwall-based groups.
The £££s for People campaign is asking residents of the region to nominate their favourite community groups for a chance to win a share of our £20,000 prize fund.
The campaign, in association with Cornwall Glass and Glazing, will benefit 60 community groups in total – 30 in Devon and 30 in Cornwall. There is £10,000 available to distribute in each county to worthy projects.
Examples include youth groups, mental health support groups, playgroups, carer support groups and help for homeless people.
With the recession, many more people are in need of help in various ways – food banks being a growing area supported by the Devon and Community Foundations.
"Without the community groups in Devon and Cornwall, the local area would not function," said Martha Wilkinson, chief executive of the Devon Community Foundation. "£££s for People offers Western Morning News readers the chance to really make a difference and show their support for the groups they are involved with, and have their voice heard."
This money is particularly vital, because the smaller voluntary and community groups are the ones that tend to miss out from public donations to charities. Figures show that 85% of donations to charity are targeted at the most well-known 5% of charities.
The campaign, which starts today, gives our readers a chance to redress the balance by highlighting worthy causes on their doorstep, who could do great things with even a small grant.
"You can give a small group £500 and that might make a difference in helping 40 people's lives, but if you give a big charity £500 that will be spent in minutes and won't even help people," said Carolyn Boyce, chief executive of the Cornwall Community Foundation.
She added that the £££s for People campaign was a chance for groups doing vital work to become better known, "and gain support for their work in the wider community".
There are thousands of voluntary and community groups across each county that are suitable for nomination.
They need to be based in, and benefit the people of, Devon and Cornwall and could include anything from your local youth club to those helping the homeless or unemployed.
Once all nominations have been made, 60 groups will be selected to go through to the final voting stages and are each guaranteed a minimum of £100 to put towards the work they do.
The remainder of the fund will be allocated based on the number of votes received for each group – the more votes collected the more cash the community group will receive. It is as simple as that!