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First community action fund project is revealed

20 December 2017

The first project created using Bridgend County Borough’s new Community Action Fund is a Garw Valley youth club for young people aged between 8 and 11 years of age - and 65 local children have already signed up to take part.

Based at the Halo Leisure Centre in Pontycymer, the new youth club runs every Friday evening with the first hour from 6pm to 7pm devoted to skates and scooters, with indoor ramps made available. From 7pm to 9pm it becomes an open youth club with football, arts and crafts, games, music and more.

Designed to provide children and young people in the valley with a place where they can get together, socialise, make new friends and access advice and support, the youth club has been developed and will be run by local volunteers.

Councillor Rod Shaw, who represents the Pontycymer ward on Bridgend County Borough Council, said: “This is a community-driven project in every sense, and I am delighted that it has brought local people together in the planning and development of what we all feel is going to be a very valuable new facility for the Garw.

“When we asked for suggestions on how the funding could be best used, a youth club was by far the most popular idea. Before applying for funding, we tested the water with a pilot scheme, and were amazed at how popular and successful it was.

“The new youth club already has 65 members, and I am sure that its popularity will continue to grow. Young people can also benefit from the volunteering opportunities that are available at the club. Simply come along to the club to find out more."

Introduced by Bridgend County Borough Council earlier this year and believed to be the first of its kind in Wales, the Community Action Fund enables each of the area’s 54 elected members to apply for funding of up to £5,000 which can be used to carry out specific improvements within their wards.

Examples of how the funding might be used include making improvements to a community centre or village hall, purchasing communal play and exercise equipment, staging a community festival or event, setting up a new group activity such as a gardening or walking club, and more.

The fund cannot be used for things like buying clothing or a uniform for a single individual, political activities like campaigning or lobbying, offering gifts and hospitality, or helping to meet the running costs of an organisation.

Councillor Hywel Williams, the Deputy Leader of Bridgend County Borough Council said: “This project aptly demonstrates what the Community Action Fund is all about.

“We want it to be something that can support local councillors in setting up initiatives and facilities that will benefit our communities and help to improve local life.

“I’m really pleased to see a new youth club opening in the Garw, especially one that has been delivered with such a great sense of community involvement.

“I’d like to thank everyone who has supported it, and I am looking forward to seeing what other initiatives and improvements are going to be delivered with the help of our Community Action Fund.”

Last Updated: 20/12/2017
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