Essex Community Foundation

News archive

Grants available for recreational activities in Harlow

24th July 2019

Voluntary and community organisations working in Harlow are being encouraged to apply for grants from the Harlow Recreation Trust. 

Grants of up to £10,000 are available for projects and activities that support the development of recreational skills, knowledge and talent for the benefit of people living in Harlow. 

The Trust, which is managed by Essex Community Foundation (ECF), has awarded grants totalling £330,000 since it was established with ECF in 2010. ECF assesses all applications to the Trust and works with a panel of local people who share their local knowledge and expertise to help make decisions on which applications to support. 

Caroline Taylor, chief executive of ECF, said: “The grants awarded from this Trust help build recreational skills and confidence.  Over the past 9 years, a wide range of projects have benefited from support, including horticultural therapy sessions, sports clubs and a weekly group for young carers.

“The grants team at ECF are available to discuss ideas and funding needs. Grants will generally be for one year, but for exceptional projects the panel may consider awarding funds for more than one year.”

Plant Pots and Wellies were among the organisations to have been awarded funding previously. A grant of £5,000 enabled them to buy tools and equipment to set up a new horticultural therapy project in Harlow for people with additional needs and disabilities.

The Offshoot Foundation also recently received a grant of £3,225 from the Harlow Recreation Trust to provide film workshops to young people during the Summer holidays.

Paul Press, from The Offshoot Foundation, said: “Our workshops help young people to learn hands-on skills in filmmaking and editing. They also develop leadership and teamwork skills and increase their aspirations for future careers.

“We believe that everyone should have access to the media arts and know that a creative career is an option for them, which is why the first workshop will be based around music videos.”

To discuss your funding needs and how to apply, please call the grants team on 01245 356018.  The deadline for submitting applications is 5pm on 6 September 2019.

Helping everyone to enjoy the Summer holidays

23rd July 2019

Braintree District Mencap Society has been awarded a grant of £6,300 to run a full programme of activities for children with a learning disability over the summer holidays. 

The grant, administered by Essex Community Foundation (ECF), was made possible by the generosity of the Bartella Charitable Fund and the Britvic Community Fund.

The funding will enable Braintree Mencap to provide children and young adults aged between 5 to 19 years old activities help to gain experiences in the community and provide their families with some respite care up to three times per week.

Yvette Wetton, Chief Executive Officer at Braintree Mencap said “We are so delighted to be able to deliver this important service for families. This funding will enable us to support families to have a great summer break enjoying both supported family outings and play scheme sessions.”

Caroline Taylor, Chief Executive of Essex Community Foundation, said “Everyone should have the opportunity to have fun with their friends during the school holidays, so we are pleased to support this programme of activities. Having the team from Braintree Mencap on hand will help to ensure that parents and siblings also receive much-needed respite and enjoy time together as a family.”

If you are a family who might be able to benefit from this or other Braintree Mencap family services contact Sara Suckling at Braintree Mencap on 01376 326302 or email her at

For more information about ECF, please call us on 01245 356018.

Four Harwich community groups awarded grants

4th July 2019

Four Harwich community groups providing initiatives for local young people have been awarded a total of £10,245 from the community fund provided by Galloper Offshore Wind Farm.

The four groups are:

  • Harwich Festival of the Arts Trust: £5,135 with the funds going towards the cost of a new part-time administrator who will develop cultural activities in Harwich Festival’s new Centre.
  • London Bus Theatre Company: £3,635 to support the production of a feature film and drama project for 300 young people from the most deprived areas of Harwich and Dovercourt.
  • Harwich Shanty Festival: £975 to run shanty workshops with young children and adults with additional needs.
  • Harwich Amateur Boxing Club: £500 to help with running costs for an amateur boxing club in Harwich.

More than £5,000 was awarded to Harwich Festival of the Arts Trust to employ a part-time the administrator who will ensure that the full potential of the new centre is realised and the existing year-round community activities are developed and expanded.

General Manager of the Trust, Michael Offord said: “We are delighted to welcome Sian Allpress as the Harwich Festival administrator. She has a vital role to play in developing the Harwich Festival as a year-round organisation, particularly as we embark upon the exciting task of developing the new Harwich Arts and Heritage Centre.”

The London Bus Theatre Company is already underway with its initiatives that include drama workshops in local primary and secondary schools on alcohol and anti-social behavior, film production with young people who will develop the script and deliver the full project from shoots to cinema marketing, and a monthly drama club at Harwich and Dovercourt High School.

Project Manager Kathy Austen said that: "The funding will help engage more young people from Harwich into the project and will make a real difference to their lives by boosting their confidence and self-esteem, improving transferable life skills and reducing isolation”.

The first workshop session for the Harwich Shanty Festival will be with primary school children and timed to tie in with the 75th Anniversary of D-Day this year. A D-Day veteran and regular shanty performer will run the workshops. He was involved with the Harwich Tugs during WW2 and will also broaden the children’s awareness of local history.

Pam Fitzgerald, Festival Director said: “We are proud of Harwich’s maritime history and enjoy fostering a sense of community pride by celebrating our heritage. The grant from the Galloper Community Fund will enable us to run three very special and very different workshops during the lead up to our Festival in October”.

Harwich Amateur Boxing Club is a local club for amateur boxers with sessions starting for those as young as five and aiming to help attendees gain confidence, fitness, self-discipline and respect.

Martin Webb, Head Coach said: “We at the club are delighted to receive the recent cash injection that will help our volunteer-led club remain sustainable, and hopefully see many more members go on to learn the sport of amateur boxing”.

Managed by Essex Community Foundation (ECF) on behalf of Galloper Offshore Wind Farm, the Galloper Community Fund will award around £10,000 each year until 2022 to support charitable, educational and environmental activities in and around Harwich. This second round of grants means the fund has now awarded more than £20,000 to help local organisations and initiatives.

Galloper, a 353MW offshore wind farm sited approximately 30km of the Suffolk coast, is operated out of Harwich International Port where a state-of-the-art operations and maintenance base is now under construction. 

Galloper Operations & Maintenance Manager, Sean Chenery, said: “Our team of 60 will work out of Harwich International Port for the lifetime of the wind farm and many also live within the Tendring District so we believe it is important to play an active role in the local community. Our fund is just one way we can support worthwhile local organisations and initiatives.”