Extra funding for Dorset Youth Projects

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Dorset County Council is one of the first local authorities in the UK to embrace a pioneering new way of distributing money for local projects with Crowdfund Dorset. 

The council has teamed up with Crowdfunder to offer local groups and organisations the opportunity to raise funds for their project online before applying for a contribution from the council – helping them boost the money raised from the crowd for brilliant ideas.

The council has set aside an Innovation Fund of £200,000 to provide young people with places to go and things to do, or to help young people improve their community through social action – volunteering, campaigning, or having a voice in local decisions. 

Crowdfunding projects to support youth groups, sports clubs, activities and events launching as part of Crowdfund Dorset may be eligible for a contribution from Dorset County Council of up to half the cost of a project to a maximum of £5,000. Don’t forget – community groups must also raise 25% of their target before they will be considered eligible for council funding.

By crowdfunding, people with great ideas for youth projects must be able to show they have public support – including from young people and the local county councillor.

A similar scheme by Plymouth City Council placed £90,000 of funding into crowdfunded projects. In total these have raised more than £500,000 across the city via the partnership.

Dorset County Council is looking to improve on this innovative way of growing community funding, help other kinds of grassroots projects to thrive with the support of the crowd and additional funds.

Jason Nuttall, our Head of Funding commented on the partnership, “We are delighted to be working with Dorset County Council as it takes up the exciting opportunity of opening up crowdfunding for the county with the added benefit of funding contributions for projects. We know this model works, and we are excited about sharing the social and economic benefits of the campaign for the county as this partnership takes off.”

Cllr Rebecca Knox, Dorset County Council’s Cabinet member for health and wellbeing, added, “It’s a pleasure to be working with the committed team at Crowdfunder in order to distribute funds direct into the heart of our community. Crowdfunding is a democratic and transparent way of distributing funds and we are delighted to be at the forefront of innovative community funding in the UK. We hope this will be the first of many examples of using crowdfunding to support a range of different projects.”

Somerford Youth Club coordinator, Jae Harris talks of his Dorset-based crowdfunded project in Christchurch, “We raised over £2,300 to support and raise awareness of our plan to take over the youth club building. This enabled us to start working towards local employment for the centre alongside taking on apprentices to upskill local young people in the future. Crowdfunding also enabled us to unlock further pledges of support from two match funding organisations, similar to the model that Dorset County Council are providing to the community through crowdfunding. We are excited to watch Crowdfund Dorset unfold across the county.”

For more information about Crowdfund Dorset and how to get involved either to support a crowdfunding project or to run a project, visit: http://www.crowdfunder.co.uk/dorset and follow #CrowdfundDorset on social media.

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