Grants totalling £72,490 given to community groups across Gwent at this year’s Your Voice, Your Choice event

Community groups joined together to bid for a share of a grants pot worth around £72,490 from the Gwent High Sheriffs’ Community Fund.

The 2022 ‘Your Voice, Your Choice’ event saw a welcome return to a face-to-face event to enable groups to bid for a grant to support their project.

‘Your Voice, Your Choice’ is a partnership between the Gwent High Sheriffs’ Community Fund, the Office of the Gwent Police & Crime Commissioner and Community Foundation Wales to award grants of up to £5,000 to community groups across Gwent.

This event features an innovative grant-giving format that enables local people to prioritise solutions to local issues and support grassroots projects.

Last year the event went online but, this year, the groups were able to gather together in person. A digital element was added to the traditional format with 11 groups submitting videos ahead of the event, outlining their pitch and how their project would benefit their local community.

These videos were then shown at the event and voted on by the other groups. The projects thought to be tackling the most important issues received a share of the grants pot. The hybrid format of the event enabled groups to have the best chance of showing the true impact of their work and sharing their enthusiasm and commitment to improving lives in Gwent.

This year, both Savoy Theatre and Shaftesbury Youf Gang were awarded multiyear grants, aimed at supporting sustainability.

This grant-making celebration is the highlight of the Gwent High Sheriffs’ Community Fund calendar and the culmination of a year of fundraising by the current High Sheriff of Gwent, Phillip Alderman. The Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner for Gwent contributes £65,000 to the scheme.

The Gwent High Sheriffs’ Community Fund works hard to build safer communities in Gwent by supporting projects that mentor and inspire young people to fulfil their potential. This event is an opportunity to celebrate the hard work and dedication of volunteers and community groups who do so much to improve the lives of people in Gwent.

Richard Williams, Chief Executive of Community Foundation Wales, speaking about the event, said:

“It was great to be able to bring the groups together in person this year. Once again, community organisations in Gwent showcased their amazing projects that are helping to improve the lives of people in their local community.

Your Voice, Your Choice provides a platform for community groups to share their stories, often through the words of the people they are helping. It puts the power in the hands of local people to prioritise solutions to local issues.

We want to thank everyone who joined us and took part in this year’s Your Voice, Your Choice.”

Police and Crime Commissioner Jeff Cuthbert said:

“I am committed to enabling children and young people to live happier, healthier lives, free from the fear of crime.

By supporting the Gwent High Sheriff’s Fund we are helping to ensure that grassroots community groups are getting essential funding to support the young people in their area.

It was fantastic to see the commitment, dedication and drive of so many groups working to make a difference to the young people in their communities, and I am pleased that all were able to receive funding that will help them to take their projects forward.”

Phillip Alderman, High Sheriff of Gwent 2021-22, said;

“It was so good to be able to be able to host Your Voice Your Choice as a face-to-face event on Saturday. All of the groups were outstanding and really seemed to enjoy being able to network again. Community groups meeting in a venue at the heart of its community is what Your Voice Your Choice tries to promote.

The awards made will hopefully allow all of the projects to grow and continue to make our community a better, safer and happier place to live.”

The organisations awarded grants at the 2022 event were as follows:

  • G-Expressions
  • Gwent Music
  • Shaftesbury Youf Gang
  • HCT (Help Caring Team)
  • StreetDoctors
  • Savoy Youth Theatre
  • Rewild Play
  • The Bigger Picture
  • Glyn Gaer Primary School
  • Gwent Young Farmers Club
  • Llamau

You can watch their video entries here.

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