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Community projects in Birmingham and Telford are celebrating this week after being awarded a share of an £18,000 fund set up by one of the country’s oldest housing trusts.

Bournville Village Trust (BVT), established by chocolate-maker George Cadbury in 1900, has awarded 14 groups grants ranging from £250 to over £3,000.

Part of the Trust’s Vision fund, the grants provide funding to community projects to help them launch or grow initiatives that benefit the communities where the Trust works.

Winners in Birmingham include Happy Hands for Deaf Children, which will use the cash to set up an art group for deaf children in Bournville, and the Willow Support Group which helps people cope with mental health issues.

Bournville School Parents Teacher Association (PTA) will use its grant to train children and volunteers to set up and run a school shop.

Other groups in the city to benefit are Shenley and Phoenix Hall youth clubs, Riverside Church, Clarinet Choir, dodge ball team the Bournville Braves, a youth film club, Shenley Seniors social group and Keep Moving exercise classes.

Projects to benefit from the cash in Telford include the Dawley Wanderers junior football team, family support group Home Start Telford and Wrekin and The Place Theatre.

Jessica Allan, Community Development Manager at Bournville Village Trust, said: “Since we launched Vision four years ago, we are proud to say that we have supported 40 community projects, which may otherwise have struggled to raise money, to launch or grow.

“The winners of this year’s funding will use their grants for a range of different things, from improving people’s health and well-being to bringing the young and old together.

“We’re now really looking forward to seeing how the winners develop their ideas and make a positive and long-lasting contribution to their communities.”

Glyn Marston, from Bournville Braves Dodgeball Club, said: ““I feel so delighted to be able bring the fun sport of Dodgeball to our community. Bournville Braves will be a dedicated community sports club that promises to cater for all abilities of all ages.

“The club will be affiliated to the sport governing body (UK Dodgeball Association ) and will be able to provide training for the fun player and the serious competitor. I am so grateful to receive the grant and without this kind support from Bournville Village Trust this project may not be possible.”

Julia Allison, from Home Start Telford & Wrekin, said: “We are delighted to receive funding from the Trust. This money will allow us to support further vulnerable families through their most difficult times, ensuring parents can provide their children with the best possible start in life.”

The grants were awarded by Bournville Festival Queen, Taylor Morris, and Annette Homer, Director of Housing and Community Services at Bournville Village Trust, at Bournville’s Community Hub, off Bournville Village Green.

Bournville Village Trust is a housing association and charity which manages 8,000 homes and provides services to around 25,000 people across Birmingham and Shropshire.

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