Cyfenter fund

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£4 million European boost for social enterprises

A £4m (€4.8m) fund to help third sector organisations to grow and deliver vital services for their communities, creating 36 jobs, has been given the go-ahead following an EU funding boost from the Welsh Government.

Through the Cyfenter fund, community and third sector groups, as well as social enterprises, will be able to access between £10,000 and £75,000 towards the costs of building refurbishments, staffing and start up costs. Cyfenter will be available across Anglesey, Gwynedd, Conwy and Denbighshire, and will help organisations offer new and viable services to their communities such as childcare and food cooperatives.

The funding will also create jobs as new organisations are established and others are expanded. It is expected that up to 26 new social enterprises could be created.

The programme is led by enterprise agency Menter Mon, and backed with £3m from the European Regional Development Fund ERDF through the Welsh Government. Further funding will come from the four local authorities where the project will operate..

Announcing the funding, Deputy Minister for European Programmes, Alun Davies, said: “We are committed to strengthening the economy through the creation and growth of sustainable social enterprises which have a central role to play in providing services to local people. This latest investment will help create more employment opportunities as well as boost the economic, social and environmental well being of people and communities in North West Wales. Looking ahead I am determined that any future European programmes for Wales will support high quality projects that will deliver smart, sustainable and inclusive growth.”

The Cyfenter Competitive Fund will also be established to identify gaps in service provision. Competitive bids will be invited from new or existing social enterprises for funding to provide these services – ensuring that enterprises meet the need and demand within communities.

Menter Mon’s Managing Director, Gerallt Llewelyn Jones said: “With private and public sector services under increasing pressure, it is crucial that viable models of delivering services in North West Wales are developed from within the non profit sector. This is Cyfenter’s primary aim.”

Source: NewsWales: http://www.newswales.co.uk/?section=Community&F=1&id=23627, relayed by ClearlySo