Girl guides, musicians and animal rescuers were among the recipients of the latest round of Newtown Town Council’s Community Fund grants.
Representatives of 11 community groups and projects were presented with donations totalling more than £8,500 at a reception in the council chamber.
With more than £9,500 already awarded earlier in the year, this now brings the total for the year to more than £18,000 to 28 local groups.
Welcoming group leaders to the presentation event, Cllr David Selby, chair of the council’s Resources Committee, said: “It’s wonderful that our town has such a variety of voluntary groups.
“The community scheme is designed to help these groups develop and grow. Well done to all the successful groups this year, and the town council looks forward to continuing the scheme next year.”
The Mayor, Cllr Sue Newham, supported by Deputy Mayor Cllr Susan Hill, remarked on the success of the community fund since its launch in 2015 and made the individual presentations of between £500 and £1,000.
Receiving the awards, the group representatives explained how the funding would help support vital projects across the town.
The first award to Arts Connection was collected by Michelle Rickard and Kezia Morgan-Rickard, whose family has used the service.
Michelle said: “Arts Connection is for families from Maesyrhandir who go along once a month to do arts, crafts and cooking.
“It’s absolutely brilliant, we have been running for three years now and have around 40 people attending.”
grant for the Dragons Cricket Club was handed over to chairman Peter Davies.
He said: “It’s very difficult to fund everything. This money will go towards things like kits and equipment – it will be well spent, I guarantee.”
Chloe Foster accepted a grant on behalf of 2nd Newtown Guides.
She said: “We are a group for girls aged 10 to 14 and we do all sorts of things like badges and trips. This money will go towards tents to go on a camp next year.”
Kelly Healy, who started Kelly’s Kat Rescue earlier this year, picked up a grant to support her group’s work in taking in stray cats.
She said: “It costs an awful lot of money with vet bills and things. Since March we have helped over 160 cats, many of them in a really bad condition.”
Nia Llywelyn collected the award to Menter Maldwyn, saying: “The money will go towards a St David’s Day celebration of Welsh language and culture in the town.
“I’m glad I have had the opportunity to come tonight – I have met so many new faces and talked to a lot of new people. We welcome any ideas you have about the running of the day.”
Sue Lawson from Montgomeryshire Family Crisis Centre explained the work of the organisation’s two refuges and outreach programmes. She added: “This money will be a fantastic help to us.”
Jean Humphries and Pat Egerton, secretaries of 30 years at Montgomeryshire Motor Neurone Disease Association, said their group aimed to support local people diagnosed with the condition.
Jean added: “The money will help us provide them with the care that social services can’t.”
South Montgomeryshire Volunteer Bureau’s Pat Hogg and Jane Jones were next to collect a grant. Pat explained that the money would go towards new computers.
Next up was Newtown Silver Band Chairman David Evans, who said the band – which started in 1880 – was still going strong.
He said: “One of our aims is to provide free tuition to anyone who wants it. What we propose to do is to run a series of workshops for our young and not-so-young musicians.”
Patricia Hughes, from Play Montgomeryshire, said the money awarded to her organisation would support its services including the mobile toy library.
Last up was Gill Colerick who accepted a grant towards the Stroke Association’s new Neuro Café in Newtown.
She said the cafe, which meets every Wednesday morning from 10.30am to 1pm, was still in the process of establishing a permanent venue, and hoped the money would help this.
Mike Poynton, who attends the cafe, joined Gill in collecting the grant award. He added: “I have had a lot of support, it’s been really helpful talking to other stroke survivors.”
Also at the presentation event were Doug and Jen Reynolds, from Newtown Carnival Committee. They were presented with a Tourism Grant, which the council separated from the Community Fund Grants last year.
Cllr Selby added: “You as volunteers are a vital part of the community that you live in.
“The great thing looking at you all is seeing what a variety of organisations you represent.
“It shows the strength of the community in this town.”