Public decide on community funds

The 1st Girvan Guides were just one of the successful groups
The 1st Girvan Guides were just one of the successful groups

21 community groups are celebrating after landing fresh funding to help support their work. More than 110 voters turned out to take part in the ‘South Carrick Decides’ event, which is part of a new way of encouraging people to get actively involved in local decision making known as ‘Participatory Budgeting’.

A fund of up to £15,000 was available at the event, with community groups pitching to an audience of local people about their proposal.

Among the projects to benefit were Lendalfoot Community Association, getting older people online at the Boyle Court Library Group, 1st Girvan Guides and lighting up the skies with a fireworks display for Girvan and District Entertainment and Attractions.

The money was made available from the South Ayrshire Health and Social Care Partnership, the Scottish Government, and The Big Lottery Fund. The aim is let communities decide which local projects get funding.

Councillor Rita Miller, Chair of the South Ayrshire Integration Joint Board and South Ayrshire Council’s Portfolio Holder for Health and Social Care, said the investment would make a real difference to the community, “All the groups taking part are making a real difference to their communities, and it’s encouraging to see so many being successful in securing fresh funding.

“Our new participatory budget approach to grants allows people to prioritise projects that they feel most strongly about which empowers communities to take greater control of decisions that directly affect them.

“This new way of working is central to our commitment to respond to local needs and I’m pleased to say the decision days are proving popular with nearly 100 different groups having benefitted in the last four months.”

Special thanks goes to J Carruthers and Sons, Battleys, James Frew, Lyreco, and Glenapp Castle for their support on the day.