Clubs and groups with initiatives that could support areas of Liverpool and Knowsley are being invited to apply for up to £5,000 in funding out of a total £100,000 as part of a participatory budget scheme to crackdown on serious and organised crime in the area.
The scheme, ‘Live Now’, is being run by Liverpool City Council, Knowsley Borough Council, Mersey Care, One Knowsley and Merseyside Police and is intended to strengthen community resilience by boosting funding to local clubs and groups, which in turn helps to reduce crime and anti-social behaviour and support vulnerable members of the community.
The first of four community cafés will be taking place at The Gate Community Centre, 600 Princess Drive, Huyton, L14 9NQ on Thursday, April 27 2023, between 9am and 1pm.
The event is one of many initiatives taking place in the Dovecot, Longview, Yew Tree and Huyton areas following the launch of the EVOLVE project to disrupt and deter gangs from operating and to make the areas places people love to live, work and visit.
It forms part of the Hold and Build phases of EVOLVE and is a way of ensuring that residents decide how the money is spent via community cafes or workshops in the lead up to the event, where residents come together to identify what it is missing from their area and how the community could benefit.
Sergeant Nicola Parsons from the EVOLVE policing team said: “The participatory budget fund aims to support local groups to provide activities and resources which will ultimately assist in reducing and preventing crime and anti-social behaviour, tackling County Lines and protecting vulnerable people within our communities.
“The idea behind the scheme is that community groups apply for funding and residents make decisions together about how the funds will be spent to best help improve where they live.
“Community groups can receive funding to further develop existing projects or start new ones and bid for a sum of money, which is usually delivered in a fun Dragon’s Den style where the community get to vote on who they want the funds to go to.
“Not only does this ensure that funding is going towards what the community really needs but it also builds strong links between groups who continue to work together long after the event, providing longevity in projects and shared resources which benefits the community.”
Sgt Parsons added: “Members of the community and potential applicants are invited to come along and have a cup of tea and chat with the team, get advice on how to fill in the application and discuss ideas about what the community needs.
“We are all excited to see what projects are brought to the table and would urge anyone who thinks they’ve got an initiative underway that would benefit from some extra funding, to get involved!
“We’re also keen to speak to anyone who may wish to get involved in helping us decide on where the funding should go.”
The £100,000 funding pot has been contributed to by Mersey Care, Liverpool City Council, Knowsley Borough Council, One Knowsley and Merseyside Police’s Community Cashback Fund which helps fund community projects across Merseyside using cash seized from criminals under the Proceeds of Crime Act.
Those applying for the fund can be from either a voluntary or community group and can be based elsewhere but must benefit or be accessible to residents in the Dovecot, Longview, Yewtree, Huyton and immediate surrounding areas.
They must also ensure their bid has a connection to at least one of the following:
- Reducing or addressing crime and anti-social behaviour
- Protecting vulnerable people from becoming victims of crime and anti-social behaviour
- Supporting victims of crime or anti-social behaviour
- Tackling County Lines
Successful applicants will be invited to attend the Live Now final participatory budget event on Saturday, June 24 2023 where they will pitch their bid in a two-minute presentation to the local community group who will allocate funds for the projects they believe will have the biggest impact in their community.
Interested community groups should email EVOLVELIVENOWPB@merseyside.police.uk for more information.