South Down MLA Colin McGrath MLA has welcomed news from the National Lottery Community Fund that a number of local community groups are set to receive substantial funding.
The South Down Assemblyman commented that: “In these difficult times local charities and community groups are in greater need of funding than ever. This announcement from the National Lottery Community Fund could not have come at a better time.
Ardglass GAC are set to receive funding to the sum of £9,950 which will be used to run a weekly dance class which will be open to all ages but with a focus on the older community as well as a monthly tea dance.
“Bright GAC are receiving a £9,623 grant to host a community festival to encourage healthier lifestyles and improve well-being.
“Drumaness Cross Community Playgroup will receive much needed funding of £8,764 to increase play and learning opportunities for children at the group by developing an outdoor play area.
“The Mourne Community Choir will receive a grant of £5,000 to fund their weekly meetings.
“And the Pantry Foodbank in Newcastle will receive a £7,500 grant to help sustain their services in the midst of COVID-19.”
Mr McGrath added: “These are all incredibly worthy causes who are right at the very coalface of community service delivery. When we begin to see lockdown restrictions eased there will be a greater importance and significance to allow our older neighbours to have the opportunity to avail of such events and groups.
“This will hopefully reduce any feelings of isolation and loneliness. This funding also means there will be the opportunity for a terrific community event which will bring people of all backgrounds and all ages together to get involved in sport and socialise.
“Again, once these very uncertain days of COVID-19 have passed such events and groups as the ones noted above are going to be more important than ever.”