As part of Cheshire West and Chester's Re-opening and Recovery Programme for rural areas and local communities, the council is working with Cheshire West Voluntary Arts Network and Creative Lives, to offer microgrants to kickstart creative activity happening in communities across the borough.
Creative Lives (formerly Voluntary Arts) is a national charity dedicated to championing community and volunteer-led creative activity, and working to improve opportunities for everyone to be creative. Creative Lives will work with the local team to support applicants and distribute grants of £200 – £500 to eligible groups throughout the borough's rural areas and districts of Chester, Ellesmere Port, Northwich, Neston, Vale Royal and Winsford.
The microgrants are intended to help local groups start, or restart, creative activities in local communities. The funding encourages community building, engagement and wellbeing, by supporting a wide range of art-forms in communities across the borough.
Proposals are encouraged that will do at least one of the following: enable activity to restart, celebrate the local high street and bring communities together safely. The grant can be used to support creative experimentation, reaching out to new members and audiences as well as covering practical costs (from hire to insurance).
The Reopening and Recovery Programme is funded by Cheshire West and Chester Council. These microgrants will fund activity happening between October 2021 and January 2022.
All applicants will be offered ongoing support from Creative Lives, Cheshire West Voluntary Arts Network and Cheshire West Voluntary Action, to continue to develop their activities. Successful applicants will also have the opportunity to apply for a small number of larger development grants.
There will be funding distributed in November (applications submitted by 5pm, Friday 15 October) and December (applications submitted by 9am, Monday 15 November).