Sudbury

Sudbury group offering seed money for small community projects

The Coalition for a Liveable Sudbury has opened applications for the third year of Project Impact, an initiative to provide funding for small, community-based projects. Anyone can apply for a grant of up to $500, which can go to a community project.

Project Impact supports small community projects, from murals to neighbourhood gardens

Project Impact helps small community projects, like the Coniston Community Gardens, get started. Applications for the next round of Project Impact are open until Jan. 30, 2018. (Coniston Community Gardens/Facebook)

The Coalition for a Liveable Sudbury has opened applications for the third year of Project Impact, an initiative to provide funding for small, community-based projects.

Anyone can apply for a grant of up to $500, which can go to a community project. Past projects include a bike exchange, a mural painting, a "living wall," and a water buggy for local festivals.

"We think that small projects can make a big impact, because it involves the residents of the community of Sudbury and it's to promote change in the places that they live," says Sarah Allen, the co-ordinator for Project Impact.

Allen says Project Impact follows a model called "participatory budgeting" — funding comes from community donations, and the community votes to determine which projects will receive funding.

"Projects get pitched by the community members, they're chosen by the community members and it's also the community that funds them. So it gives a real sense of ownership over what's happening in the community."

Applications for this round of Project Impact can be found online and are due Jan. 30, 2018.

Project Impact has helped support a variety of community projects, such as a water buggy at local festivals and a mural at the Northern Ontario Railroad Museum and Heritage Centre. (Coalition for a Liveable Sudbury)

Helping community organizations grow

Coniston Community Gardens is one of the past winners of Project Impact, with their proposal to build 15 accessible planter beds for seniors. Lead gardener Linda Hachez says the new beds helped to bring seniors and neighbourhood students together.

"What's happened is the mentoring that's going on between the kids and the seniors," she says. "So that part of it makes us really happy."

Hachez says Project Impact is a good way for community groups to get off the ground, and has fewer restrictions than most other grant programs. 

"Although there are lots of benefactors that will give you money, there's lots and lots of red tape involved," Hachez says.

"Project Impact gives you a good idea how to start, where to start and some seed money to get started."

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