£145,000 for six voluntary groups

Coun Pauline Nash talking about tourism in Calderdale.'Pictured at Albert Prominade, Halifax
Coun Pauline Nash talking about tourism in Calderdale.'Pictured at Albert Prominade, Halifax

SIX voluntary organisations could share £145,000 so they can prepare for their grants being totally axed during the next 18 months.

They are Calderdale DART, Age UK, Community Transport Calderdale, Ground Floor Centre, Cloverleaf Advocacy and Pennine Relate.

“These groups have been delivering valuable services to significant numbers of people – many of them Calderdale’s most vulnerable residents,” said Coun Pauline Nash.

“It is important that in changing the way we commission these services to get the best value for money, we don’t just pull the funding plug, leaving them high and dry.”

Rather than just award grants to worthy organisations, from April the council commission services from organisations which meet council priorities.

Councillor Nash (Lib-Dem, Skircoat) the council’s community services spokeswoman, said the transition money would only be made available to groups and organisations previously funded through community grants.

“We have listened to their concerns and feel that it’s only fair to make money available to give them longer to find other means of funding,” she said.

At least 10 organisations had expressed an interest in providing advice and information services but there was only one firm bid, from Calderdale Citizens’ Advice Bureau.

Calderdale Council Cabinet will be asked on Monday to award the bureau the contract.

Councillors will also be asked to confirm cultural grants worth up to £100,000 a year to The Square Chapel Arts Centre and £10,000 this year for the Hebden Bridge “Handmade Parade”, reducing to £5,000 next year and nothing in 2014.

Grants have been recommended for another eight organisations: WomenCentre £65,000 over three years, The Prince’s Trust £38,000, Calderdale Smartmove £51,000, Street Angels £74,000, The Halifax Festival £54,000 over two years, Groundwork Environmental Services £50,000, Treesponsibility £23,000 and White Ribbon Campaign £20,000 in 2013/14.