Food banks given just six days to apply for £5,000 grants

Voluntary groups and non-profit organisations, including food banks, face a race against time to apply to the council for grants of up to £5,000.

Food banks: Croydon Council is trying to help voluntary groups, just not trying very hard

The human dynamos in the propaganda bunker at Croydon Council got round to releasing the details of its funding scheme last night, including a note that the deadline for applications is January 31.

That gives the already hard-working volunteers and charity organisers just six working days to get their paperwork and application sorted.

The council has a bit of a reputation for being reluctant to distribute “free money” when it is given grants for local causes and businesses, as it showed during the first covid lockdown in early 2020.

But the low-key manner in which this particular giveaway was announced – in a press release emailed after 5pm on a Friday evening, and therefore unlikely to get much pick-up and missing the dead-tree local papers’ deadlines for next week – seems particularly cheap and petty, even by Croydon Council standards.

It’s just as well, therefore, that Inside Croydon is here to get the word out…

In this instance, the government has given Croydon Council more than £140,000 to distribute to voluntary organisations that assist households most in need with food, energy, water bills, and essentials such as sanitary products. That’s enough cash to help nearly 30 food banks and other aid organisations around the borough.

The funding is aimed at non-profit organisations that help people to pay for basic living costs, such as food banks, one-stop shops, FareShare distributors and hygiene banks.

Eligible organisations can apply for a one-off payment to help support families and individuals in need.

The four-page form can be downloaded here.

But the paperwork demanded of the volunteers doesn’t end there. “For all awards, a report will be required that provides an update of how many families and individuals were assisted with this fund,” the council states.

Completed forms need to be emailed to communitygrants@croydon.gov.uk before that looming deadline of January 31.

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About insidecroydon

News, views and analysis about the people of Croydon, their lives and political times in the diverse and most-populated borough in London. Based in Croydon and edited by Steven Downes. To contact us, please email inside.croydon@btinternet.com
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