New £11.5 million fund to tackle poverty and inequality

Empowering local communities.

People in disadvantaged communities are set to benefit from a range of projects to tackle poverty, inequality and rural disadvantage.

Around 250 community groups, social enterprises and charities across the country will receive a share of £11.5 million in 2019-20 through the new Scottish Government Investing in Communities Fund. Further funding each year over the next two years will allow recipients to create longer-term plans, helping more people to benefit from their projects.

Communities Secretary Aileen Campbell said:

“Local communities understand what works in their own areas, and this new funding will support a range of local projects.

"It will help with the creation of jobs, skills and opportunities, building people’s confidence and wellbeing, and support local communities to grow through initiatives that include employability, financial advice, after school clubs and befriending services.

"Introduction of this flexible, multi-year fund is the result of listening to the views of people in many different communities. It will enable community groups to make sustainable and impactful changes by providing them with the resources they need, when they need them to support people through the multiple challenges they face.

“This Fund will empower communities to have more control over of their own affairs and take forward more of the activities they have identified as being vital to their local area.”

Matt Baker from Dumfries arts-led charity The Stove Network said:

“We are living in an era of community empowerment which offers so much confidence to local people by allowing them to take responsibility for the changes they want to see in their area.

“As our work grows in scale and more people come to depend upon it for opportunities and connections, this funding from Scottish Government becomes a vital lifeline. It allows us to employ key roles to support our dedicated volunteers that already give so much, and enable the growth of community-led initiatives that benefit the people who need it most.”


The new Investing in Communities Fund forms part of the Scottish Government’s wider Empowering Communities Programme.

The fund offers availability of multiyear awards, which means funding is available over three financial years from 2019-20 to 2021-22 with projects able to apply for funding for more than one year. This allows for longer term planning to develop and support communities to design and deliver local community-led solutions to tackle poverty and inequalities.

The full list of successful projects will be made available on the Scottish Government’s Empowering Communities Fund webpage.

The Stove Network in Dumfries run a fully accessible public arts space for the population of the town and the wider region. The charity supports a network that creates opportunities and connections for the creative community and integrates with our local economy and wider society.


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