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Charities and groups in Newmarket, Haverhill and Bury St Edmunds could receive funding from £466,000 pot

Community groups across Suffolk are set to share in a £466,000 bonanza which is expected to be approved by West Suffolk councillors next week.

Applications totalling more than £1 million from 46 groups were received from community groups, charities and voluntary organisations for grants from the council's Community Chest.

These have been whittled down by a working party of councillors which has recommended payments being made to 32 groups across the district.

Some of the Rural Coffee Caravan team with visitors at the Suffolk Show 2023. Photo: James Powell
Some of the Rural Coffee Caravan team with visitors at the Suffolk Show 2023. Photo: James Powell

A grant of £20,300 to the Bury St Edmunds-based Women's Aid West Suffolk group would see an outreach service for victims of domestic abuse set up at Foley House Newmarket, initially with a weekly coffee morning with creche facilities, leading to the introduction of the Voice programme which is designed to help victims and survivors of domestic abuse.

"We have spoken to a lot of people in Newmarket about the service and they have told us we need to be here, so we know there is definitely a need," said the group’s operations manager Katherine Ahluwalia.

She said that 18 months ago a pilot scheme was set up in Haverhill because it was felt that people living in rural towns should not have to travel to Bury St Edmunds, Cambridge or Ipswich, a journey that was not possible for some women.

“We were absolutely passionate about taking services out to people and this one was a huge success,” said Katherine. “We were told it had been life saving,” she added.

Also set for a financial boost is The Stable cafe and community space in Newmarket High Street, which has been recommended for a grant of £5,000 to continue to foster a sense of belonging for people of ages by providing opportunities to take part in activities and develop friendships.

The Racing Centre in Fred Archer Way, Newmarket, is likely to get £5,100 towards its community connector project which will help people in need of help to get referrals and to support families with cost-of-living pressures.

Another £5,000 is earmarked for The Lightwave community interest company which helps people in Red Lodge and Beck Row who are struggling financially by providing a foodbank, budgeting advice and support funds.

The REACH Community Project which offers debt advice and cost-of-living support to people in Newmarket and Haverhill has been recommended for a £6,600 award and EPIC Dads, the Mildenhall-based group which offers weekly well-being support to fathers, mothers, carers and families in partnership with St Mary's School Academy is set to receive £2,500.

The following is a list of all the other charities set to receive grants:

♦ Brave Futures, West Suffolk – £10,000

♦ Bridge Community Church, Bury St Edmunds – £5,000

♦ Bury Drop In, Bury St Edmunds – £9,916

♦ Citizens Advice West Suffolk – £245,000

♦ Free Food Haverhill – £7,481

♦ Gatehouse Caring, Bury St Edmunds – £10,000

♦ Haverhill Community Trust – £5,000

♦ Haverhill Men’s Shed – £10,052

♦ Haverhill Scout and Guide Management Committee – £5,000

♦ Home Start in Suffolk – £7,000

♦ Hope After Suicide Loss, West Suffolk – £10,000

♦ Lyward Colley Trust, West Suffolk – £6,000

♦ Music Prescription, Bury St Edmunds – £2,500

♦ Our Special Friends, West Suffolk – £9,000

♦ Rural Coffee Caravan, West Suffolk – £6,812

♦ Second Chance Stroke Association, Bury St Edmunds – £2,500

♦ Still Good Food, Bury St Edmunds – £8,672

♦ St Nicholas Hospice Care, West Suffolk – £10,000

♦ Suffolk Accident and Rescue Service – £10,000

♦ Suffolk Family Carers – £2,500

♦ Suffolk Mind – £6,000

♦ Suffolk Rape Crisis – £10,000

♦ The Befriending Scheme, Haverhill – £5,000

♦ The Offshoot Foundation, West Suffolk – £3,000

♦ The Voluntary Network Befriending Scheme, West Suffolk – £10,000

♦ West Suffolk Vineyard Church, Bury St Edmunds – £5,800