A Fund which has provided more than £1 million to support Braintree district residents and communities through major social issues is open for applications.

Community groups and charities can apply for a slice of the £95,725 available this year from the Braintree District and Eastlight Community Fund.

Managed by the independent charitable trust, Essex Community Foundation (ECF), and set up by Braintree District Council and Eastlight Community Homes, the Fund has awarded more than £1 million to local causes since 2015.

The fund will support causes which tackle the big issues affecting residents the most: the cost-of-living, loneliness and isolation, emotional health and wellbeing and the lack of opportunities for young people.

Applications are welcomed from charities, residents’ groups, social enterprises and other non-profit organisations.

Grants of between £500 and £2,500 are available for smaller scale grassroots projects, alongside larger awards of up to £30,000 over three years.

James Green, Eastlight’s Community Empowerment Director, said: “Our Braintree District and Eastlight Community Fund exists to support the amazing work carried out by local charities and groups in our communities.

“So if you’ve got a great scheme or programme that could help improve the lives of residents living in Braintree district, then we want to hear from you.”

Cllr Marry Cunningham, Cabinet Member for Stronger Communities at Braintree District Council said: “The work of local charities and community groups makes such a difference to the residents of the Braintree District. This funding allows us to support some great initiatives and I look forward to reviewing this year’s applications.”

Last year’s funds supported brilliant organisations including Abberton Rural Training (ART), which provides “lifeline” programmes which help supports people’s mental health, and Soul Food, which offers meals and community support to anyone who needs them in Halstead.

How to apply

Complete the short online application form here. The deadline to apply is 5pm on Friday 18 August.

If you have any questions, please contact the ECF grants team on grants@essexcf.org.uk or 01245 355947.