Large Image

Young West Cumbrians called to join youth panel

Cumbria Community Foundation is looking for young people living in West Cumbria aged between 16-25 who are passionate about their community and making a difference, to join the 2021 #CanDo Youth Advisory Panel.

#CanDo encourages community organisations to apply for funding for community projects, led by young people. Those applications are then considered by a youth panel, putting the decisions firmly in the hands of the next generation.

The Youth Advisory Panel will be made up of up to 15 young people with a wide range of lived experiences and a diversity of backgrounds and will form a crucial part of the Foundation’s grantmaking and steer its charitable work in a more youth-led direction.

Funded by Sellafield Ltd, with match funding from Thomas Graham & Sons and local donors, #CanDo is part of Transforming West Cumbria, a multi-year social investment programme developed by Cumbria Community Foundation.

People who take part will have the opportunity to meet other young people and get a unique view into the charity sector. The panel is expected to meet up to four times a year and will be held virtually with an in-person meeting if possible, with pandemic restrictions.

Emily Dixon, 16, from Cleator Moor who was part of the panel last year, said: “The panel was a great experience to be a part of. It was nice to be able to speak to people and share ideas even with the current circumstances. Everyone was really willing to get involved and all the ideas were very different.”

Gary McKeating, Head of Community and Development at Sellafield Ltd, said: “This is a great opportunity for young people to get involved and be empowered to make a difference in their communities, I would encourage people to apply, you will also develop new skills and meet new people along the way.”

Annalee Holliday, Senior Grants & Programmes Officer at Cumbria Community Foundation, said: “Young people have enormous potential to make a positive change – their involvement is crucial to the future of our communities. This group will bring expertise and a fresh pair of eyes to help us decide which projects are funded.”

Applications for the #CanDo Youth Advisory Panel will close on Friday 9th July, 5pm.

The first meeting will take place on Tuesday 27th July and will be held virtually.

Click here to download the #CanDo Information Pack.

Click here to download the CanDo Youth Advisory Panel Application Form.

For more information or to apply, click here or call Annalee Holliday on 01900 820827 or email

Local wool helping local people

We are lucky to have many local businesses supporting the Foundation. A massive thank you to Laura Rosenzweig of Laura’s Loom who is contributing some of her earnings to people who are in a less fortunate place.

Laura Rosenzweig said: “I am aware of the good work of Cumbria Community Foundation since it gave a grant to Sedbergh Town Band a few years ago. Recently I took a deeper look at the website and saw that the Foundation can help in all manner of ways, disbursing funds to a wide variety of projects that help with many different needs.  It’s not always obvious who is and isn’t struggling; there are many who put a brave face on a difficult situation. Through the Foundation I am confident that my contributions will reach those who need it most.”

If you are interested in supporting the Foundation, please contact

Good causes benefit from a quarter of a million pounds

Charitable projects across the county have received a share of more than £235,000 addressing a range of issues including homelessness, mental health and domestic violence.

More than 40 charitable organisations and 11 people received a share of the funds at Cumbria Community Foundation’s recent grants panel.

The money came from funds set up by local people and businesses including Herdy, Russell Armer, Westmorland Ltd and author Hunter Davies.

The 106 Bus Partnership received £2,000 from the Pappagallino Fund to support its vital bus service for residents in the Eden area.

The service means that elderly rural residents have transport to do their weekly shopping, attend regular health appointments, pick up prescriptions and attend vaccination centres.

Chairman, John Owen, said: “We have had a very difficult 12 months with Covid restrictions meaning our passenger numbers have been quite restricted. However, are determined to keep the route running so that isolated rural residents, without their own transport can get to the shop and attend Covid testing and vaccination appointments.

“As restrictions ease, we expect to see more people using the bus again. We’re also putting together some ideas for days out using the 106 bus route for people who are planning to holiday at home this summer. The money from Cumbria Community Foundation has helped us over the financial challenges of Covid and will ensure that the route can continue into the future. “

School children from Heron Hill Primary School in Kendal are learning to become young apiarists thanks to £3,000 from the Holehird Trust and Russell Armer Fund.

There is a real buzz at the school around their new interest in beekeeping after the children were introduced to the activity by chair of school governors Jacqui Cottam, who is an experienced apiarist and established the Bee Team.

Jacqui said: “The funding will prove invaluable to our project over the next year. Our Bee Team Young Apprentice Scheme, targets children who may be at risk of not achieving their potential in life.

“The scheme allows pupils who may not have the ‘social leg up’ many youngsters have, by giving them not only nationally recognised qualifications, but most importantly, life skills, a reference, confidence and work experience to take to the next step of their journey, as well as educating and enthusing the next generation of beekeepers.”

Carlisle based iCan Health and Fitness CIC received £5,971 to support its new WeCan Cook project. The pilot project will provide simple, healthy cookery classes to add to its current list of services including a community gym that focuses on promoting healthy weight.

Julia Clifford, Director, said: “We have been inundated with requests from our community to start an interactive cooking programme, where people cook alongside a chef. This is very much the way we do everything, we enable people to gain skills through interaction, rather than teaching through a dictating model that we are so used to here in the UK. We will offer six four-week sessions for five beneficiaries each month to learn healthy, affordable dishes to enhance their wellbeing.”

A project for the environment and youth work sector designed to engage and inspire young people from across the Westmorland area was awarded £32,220 from the Westmorland Family Community Fund.

The Oaklea Trust’s Green Mentor Scheme will encourage young people to take part in environmental learning and action over the next two years.

Susan Green, Director, said: “The project is designed to engage and inspire young people from across the Westmorland area of Cumbria, to take part in environmental learning and action.

“We can now employ a Green Mentor Youth leader to recruit and support groups of young people aged 13-18 in environmental social action projects.

“This project fits with our workplace behaviour of being kind, in this case to the planet and develops the partnership with the Ernest Cook Trust who initially launched this concept across the UK.

There was also another boost for disadvantaged students across the county as they benefit from a grant of £27,559 from the Printers Inc Social Mobility Fund to purchase laptops for their studies.

£7,639 was also awarded to 11 people to support their career development through educational grants.

Ellen Clements, Senior Grants Officer, said: “There are many worthy organisations in Cumbria that hold communities together. This is a great example of how philanthropy is helping local people and helping our communities to thrive. We are grateful for the continued support of all our fund holders.”

VACANCY – Grants & Programmes Officer

Would you like to be part of our team?

Grants & Programmes Officer

 Cumbria Community Foundation is one of the county’s leading/largest grant makers and addresses poverty and disadvantage by providing vital funding to local voluntary and community organisations through donations from individuals, companies, charitable trusts and statutory organisations.

We’re seeking a highly motivated and enthusiastic individual with knowledge of the needs of the county and experience of charities and community organisations to join our team. This role will focus on supporting community projects with funding, administering grant programmes, working closely with fundholders and have responsibility for leading on wider health and wellbeing initiatives.

Download the job description and application form. 

For an informal discussion about the role, contact Jenny Benson on 01900 825760.

Closing date is Midnight Tuesday 8th June 2021.

Interviews will take place on Wednesday, 23rd June 2021.

Our offices are in Dovenby near Cockermouth, but the role is currently home-based due to COVID-19 restrictions.

Grants available for good causes in Furness

Charitable groups and community projects in and around the Furness area are being encouraged to apply for funding.

Cumbria Community Foundation manages over a hundred grant making funds and awards on average £2 million a year to community organisations. Funding for projects in the Furness area are considered four times a year through the Furness Grants Committee.

Last month, four community projects received a share of £45,000 from the Furness Grants Committee. The money came from funds set up by local people and businesses including the Barrow Community Trust Fund, Brian and Ann Clark Fund and Cumbria Young People’s Fund.

The Cumbria Victims Charitable Trust Fund also made a grant of £350 to an individual affected by domestic violence.

Drop Zone Youth Projects received £18,500 from the Cumbria Fund and the Cumbria Young People’s Fund to renovate the orchard area of Dalton Train Station.

Cath Corkill, Project Manager, said: “This project is an innovative piece of work and to have it funded is really positive.  We are linking up with Dalton Town Tidy Group and Network Rail. It will enable us to give opportunities to young people over the summer to engage with their local communities. Through this piece of work, we will offer practical, accredited opportunities for young people who are currently struggling to engage in school.”

Brathay Trust received £20,464 from the Young Persons Opportunity Fund for The Divert Project. This early intervention project will work with 30 young people from Barrow who are at risk of offending, may be disengaging with education and would benefit from positive support.

Gemma Jones, Assistant Head of Community – Cumbria and North West, said: “Through our work in Barrow and relationships with schools and the Youth Offending Service, we know that young people often don’t receive the support they need until they have reached crisis point, and we want to provide an early intervention that will help them understand their potential, the choices available to them and support them to take action to improve their own lives.”

“The 12-week programme will combine one-to-one  and positive group activities, focusing on personal development and life skills using outdoor, creative and nature-based activities.”

Ellen Clements, Senior Grants & Donor Services Officer at Cumbria Community Foundation, said: “We are grateful to the generosity of our fundholders to enable us to support these vital groups.

“The funding creates real opportunities for organisations that make a difference in the communities in which they serve. We would like to hear from any community groups in the Furness area to discuss your projects and see how our funds can support your needs.”

For more information call Ellen Clements on 01900 820824. The closing date for the next Furness Grants Panel is 25th June 2021.