In 2019, as part of the ‘Empowering Places’ programme, BUD partnered with the fantastic people at Co-operatives UK, Centre4 and Power to Change to help connect Community Businesses with opportunities to grow and develop.
“Over the past five years the Empowering Places programme, funded by Power to Change and delivered in partnership with Co-operatives UK, New Economics Foundation and Centre for Local Economic Development, has been testing out the ways in which catalytic community anchors in some of England’s most deprived communities can seed community businesses in their places to kick start a virtuous circle that builds social infrastructure for long term impact.
“These ‘catalysts’ – in wards within Hartlepool; Wigan; Leicester; Bradford; Plymouth; Grimsby – have worked with their communities to identify local needs and business opportunities, they have incubated business in assets theyown, they have supported businesses to take on assets, they have nurtured community groups long the path to community businesses and supported entrepreneurs to connect with their community,” – Power to Change
“Empowering Places is rooted in the foundational belief that local people are best placed to understand and tackle social issues in their neighbourhoods,” says Bethan Hunt, Co-operatives UK Empowering Places Manager.
“As the programme lead, Co-operatives UK has witnessed the power of place-based funding in enabling positive change through community businesses, which support thriving local economies, where communities can come together, volunteer and secure decent employment.
“Co-operatives UK is committed to inspiring communities to come together through democratic enterprises due to the impact this creates through the distribution of power and wealth.”
You can see the impact of the ‘Empowering Places’ project here.
In Grimsby, Empowering Places ‘catalyst’ Centre4 wanted to ensure Community Businesses had the resources and the knowledge to access funding opportunities, and so enlisted the help of BUD (us!) to achieve this.
Most recently we have worked with Nunny’s Farm, a community business which neighbours Centre4 on the Nunsthorpe Estate in Grimsby, who needed support to develop their strategy and income generation plan.
We knew that, with the right information, we could help connect Community Businesses like Centre4 and Nunny’s Farm, with opportunities to grow and develop.
As summarised by Power to Change Empowering Places lead Natalie White:
“From saving local shops and creating leisure facilities, to providing training opportunities for local people and helping to build affordable housing, we know that Community Businesses help make places better in a real way.
“But articulating their story and the difference they are making in a way that appeals to investors and funders can sometimes be challenging for Community Businesses.
We know all too well how daunting it can be knowing where to start in accessing funding. We want to help level the playing field, and provide information often inaccessible for those who need it most to lead positive change in our communities.
We are proud to share with you a resource developed during our experience with Nunny’s farm, designed to take you step by step through every step of securing funding for your organisation.
The downloadable workbook will guide you through everything needed to access funding, from sourcing the right funder, to developing proposals and slide decks.
It breaks down some of the more difficult aspects of securing funding through activities and reading, and is a great tool for businesses and organisations at the start of their funding journey.
You can download the workbook here
We would like to take this opportunity to thank Co-Operatives UK, Centre4, and Power to Change, and we hope that this resource helps you take your own projects and community businesses to the next level.