More than £3m of funding announced for Greater Manchester arts and community groups
Greater Manchester arts venues and community groups are set to receive more than £3m of funding this year after GM councillors agreed to protect a GM-wide grants scheme.
Voluntary and community organisations from right across Greater Manchester will be supported by the scheme. PANDA, the Performing Arts Network and Development Agency, will receive funds to support their Creative Breaks programme.
Creative Breaks helps unemployed or underemployed people in GM find skilled jobs by giving them training in arts marketing, event promotion, film making and project management.
M6 Theatre, who run youth theatre workshops and community projects for 8 to 18 year-olds in Rochdale, will also receive a grant from the scheme to help them continue the work they do with young people.
Interim Greater Manchester Mayor Tony Lloyd said: “These grants are another example of the benefits that come from working together across GM. Working together, we can support arts networks giving people the skills to get back to work, community groups that help young people gain confidence through sport as well as our world-leading cultural institutions.
Councillor Alistair Cox, Chair of the AGMA Statutory Functions committee that oversees the grants programme, added: "It is great news that Greater Manchester leaders have agreed to continue this grant funding for a further year. This displays great confidence in the work and commitment of the 19 cultural and voluntary organisations that are in the current programme.
"I know through chairing my committee how hard all these organisations work to make sure their services reach the widest range of people across Greater Manchester - and particularly those communities which are the hardest to reach. Through our monitoring we know in detail the degree to which their work improves the economy of Greater Manchester, contributes to the improving of skills and employability of the residents of Greater Manchester and helps to develop strong and inclusive communities. This is all the more important at this time of severe financial restraints and reduced budgets."
LGBT Youth North West (who have recently been re-named as the Proud Trust) and the Water Adventure Centre will both receive funds from the scheme that are specifically set aside for leading Greater Manchester community groups.
The Water Adventure Centre in Droylsden is a youth project that helps build confidence and self-esteem in children through water sports.
The project has been awarded funds to enable it to continue its work with children affected by disability, discrimination and disadvantage.
LGBT Youth North West, who support lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans young people in GM and the North West of England, will also receive a grant to continue their work.
Greater Manchester sport is also set to benefit. Greater Sport, the GM Sports Partnership, which works with councils, sports governing bodies and other organisations to help get people in Greater Manchester more active and live healthier lifestyles, will have their funding continued.
The grants scheme also supports organisations across GM that are nationally- and internationally-recognised centres of excellence which bring investment and visitors to the region. Much-loved Greater Manchester cultural institutions such as Halle Concert Society, Manchester Camerata, HOME and the Royal Exchange Theatre are set to receive hundreds of thousands of pounds in funding.
Bolton’s Octagon Theatre and Oldham’s Coliseum Theatre are also amongst the beneficiaries of the scheme. Each theatre will be awarded a substantial sum to help promote the arts within their communities.