COMMUNITY organisations in Cumbernauld and Kilsyth have benefited from a round of funding by North Lanarkshire Council.
The council has awarded grants totalling £210,000 to many good causes.
Among them were the Scottish Spina Bifida Association (£4750), Scottish Pensions Association Cumbernauld (£380), the Cumbernauld branch of the Multiple Sclerosis Society (£855). Kilsyth Old People’s Committee (£950), Watch Us Grow (£19,000) and Cumbernauld and Kilsyth Unemployed Workers’ Centre (£28,500).
The last two organisations – Watch Us Grow and the workers’ centre – are in receipt of a three-year funding agreement due to expire next March.
The council’s social work convener, Barry McCulloch, said: “Across North Lanarkshire, many thousands of people give their time and skills to help others in their local communities.
“Through voluntary organisations, they offer invaluable support and advice to improve the quality of life of friends, family and others.
“The support these organisations provide complements the social care services provided by the council, and we are pleased to be able to contribute towards their operation through the Section 10 grants.”
Watch Us Grow, based in Palacerigg Country Park, trains people with learning disabilities to grow and sell plants, developing the skills they need to find employment and live more independently.
Its chairwoman, Ann McCulloch, said: “This funding will sustain our garden project which currently supports 24 people and is the main project at Watch Us Grow.”
She added: “The money is absolutely crucial, without it we would be unable to continue.”
Cumbernauld and Kilsyth Unemployed Workers Centre offers advice and support services to people who are out of work.
In the last year it has secured over £1.2 million for the people it supports, either in benefits or from employment tribunals.
Denis Hackett of the centre said: “We are very grateful to North Lanarkshire Council for this funding, even though it is reduced by five per cent, as we understand the tough financial circumstances it is in at the moment.
“However we also intend to approach the Scottish Government for additional funding as we want to expand our services for people facing employment tribunals, a complex area of law where legal aid does not exist.”