West Norfolk community projects win county cash grants

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Nine West Norfolk community projects are to receive grants of up to £2,500 from Norfolk County Council’s Healthy Communities project.

The scheme aims to support initiatives that help people to remain active and give them the best chance of living longer.

Among the groups receiving grants are the Matthew Project, to provide a regular drop-in session for young people in North Lynn, and the North Lynn Discovery Centre’s bid to build a new, free community gym.

Discovery Centre manager Jimmy Yallop, who hopes the gym will open next month, said: “We are really pleased to receive this funding and without it the project would not have been able to go ahead.”

Two grants have each been awarded to Sustrans for Active Explorer projects in Hunstanton and Downham and West Norfolk Befriending, who hope to provide more support and one-to-one sessions in the two towns.

The Forward Day Centre and West Norfolk Mind have also been awarded to the Forward Day Centre in North Lynn, for a project to allow service users to grow vegetables, and West Norfolk Mind for their Gardening for Health allotment project.

The grants were designed to give priority support to schemes which aim to reduce emergency hospital admissions, encourage a healthy lifestyle and give children the best possible start in life.

Dan Roper, chairman of the Norfolk Health and Wellbeing Board, said: “These grants will make a real difference to local communities.

“The money allows the ideas for community-led health improvement activities to be turned into action and therefore help those most in need of help and support.

“The fact the ideas have come from communities themselves means the money is being spent wisely and as a result will have the biggest impact.”

Lucy Macleod, Interim Director of Public Health for Norfolk, added: “Local people themselves are the experts in what health issues matter most to them where they live. This is why this funding scheme is so important.”