Apply now for a share of our Community Cashback Fund19.06.23 - Merseyside
Merseyside Police and the Police and Crime Commissioner have reopened their Community Cashback Fund which sees money seized from criminals reinvested back into our communities.
Grassroots organisations and voluntary groups across Merseyside are invited to apply for a share of £100,000 from the Fund for projects focused on preventing crime, building safer communities, and providing better opportunities for young people.
Local groups can bid for grants of up to £5,000 from the Fund, which uses the money and assets removed from criminals through the Proceeds of Crime Act and redirects it back into our communities to help provide vital resources and fund community projects across Merseyside.
It is aimed at strengthening community resilience by supporting local clubs and groups, which in turn helps to reduce crime and anti-social behaviour, promote diversionary activities, and support vulnerable members of the community.
Merseyside’s Police Commissioner Emily Spurrell said: “I’m excited to announce the relaunch of our Community Cashback Fund, taking cash out of the pockets of criminals and putting it back where it belongs - into grassroots communities across Merseyside.
“Merseyside Police is relentless in its pursuit of criminal gangs and its determination to strip criminals of the money and assets they make from their illegal actions, and there’s no better use for it than channelling it into the areas which need it most.
“By turning bad money to good, we can prevent crime, helping local groups to make their areas safer and stronger, while giving our young people better opportunities.
“I can’t wait to see the bright ideas our community and voluntary organisations have for reinvesting this money in the best way to solve the issues that matter most to local people.”
Chief Constable Serena Kennedy said: “It is fantastic to use the money taken from criminals and reinvest it back into our communities. It sends a strong message to criminals that we will come for their assets and money.
“I’m really pleased that community organisations, neighbourhood groups and individuals across Merseyside have the opportunity to apply for funding and use it for good to shape local initiatives, improve life chances and benefit residents in the long term, using the cash seized from criminals. We all work hard to make our communities safer, better places to live and work and it pays dividends when the money, seized by the force, can be shared with worthy causes that benefit the communities who are often blighted by crime.
“I would encourage local groups and clubs to apply, and I look forward to hearing about the projects we have been able to support and the positive impact they are having in making our communities a better place to live and work in the months and years to come."
The fund is being managed by the Community Foundation for Merseyside. All applications for funding must demonstrate how they will contribute to one of the following key themes:
- Prevention of crime and anti-social behaviour
- Diversion away from criminal gangs
- Promoting Diversity, Equality and Inclusion
Groups can apply for a maximum of £5,000.
The closing date for entries is 4pm on Friday 14th July 2023.
How the Community Cashback Fund works
Merseyside Police are relentless in their pursuit of criminals and part of that approach looks at alternate ways to target them. One of the ways is by targeting their ill-gotten gains.
Between 1 April 2022 to March 2023, and by using a variety of methods including stop checks by officers, drug searches, warrants and proactive financial investigations, there was a total of £3,168,102.02 obtained from 482 forfeiture orders, and total of £3,500,961.00 from 207 confiscation orders (obtained following a conviction) all under the Proceeds of Crime Act (POCA).
These funds are then sent to the Home Office, who return approximately 50% of all forfeited funds, and approximately 18.75% of eligible funds from post-conviction confiscation orders. A proportion of these funds is directed into the Community Cashback Scheme where it is used on community projects in areas blighted by the criminals, and criminality that operate within them.
In 2022, applicants had to demonstrate how they would contribute to one of the following key themes;
- Diversion away from criminal gangs;
- Diversity, equality and inclusion;
- Improving mental health and emotional wellbeing in young people;
- Tackling violence and intimidation against women and girls.
The initiatives that were successful are listed below:
Diversion away from criminal gangs
- Bold Rangers FC - Based in St Helens, the funding will be used to purchase football equipment to allow the group to provide activities for the local community.
- Onward Homes - The funding will allow the group to continue supporting ex-offenders/offenders/at risk of offending young people that are from the Beechwood estate, Wirral.
- For Housing - To work in partnership with VIBE to grow, recruit more young people to a project that seeks to respond to issues that are important to them on the Stocksbridge Estate, Knowsley. The project targets young people age 11+ and gives them the opportunity to feel valued, listened to and see the impact of their ideas.
- Mersey Juniors FC - The funding will be used to offer courses to the groups older players, with a view to giving them a pathway into other football related areas. They will also provide anti-bullying and mental health sessions in Knowsley and St Helens.
- The Florence Institute Trust Limited (The Florrie) - The Florrie offers a social and educational hub for the people of south Liverpool. The funding will help to deliver sessional activities to engage children and young people.
- Walton Youth Project - The project aims to provide a hub of community activity, involving people of all ages. The funding will help to offer diversionary activities to young people at risk of getting involved in criminal behaviour. (Liverpool)
Diversity, Equality and Inclusion
- Vibe, formerly Knowsley Youth Mutual - Vibe is a youth organisation dedicated to supporting young people through a range of inspiring and inclusive clubs, activities and programmes. The funding will be used to provide 24 sessions for young people aged 11-19 who identify as belonging to the LQBTQ+ community to improve their mental health and shelter them away from discrimination and hate crime.
- Powerful beyond all measures CIC (PBAM) - To deliver hate crime awareness workshops to bring the community together. (Liverpool)
- Speke Children’s Environment Committee - The project delivers a range of activities to children and young people living in an area of deprivation. The funding will be used to support children and young people around crime and aim to prevent them from becoming involved directly, or otherwise, in criminal activities.
- The Venus Centre - Based in Sefton, the Venus centre aims to empower, promote and support women, young women and their children in developing their potential, recognising their choice, achieving their goals and challenging injustice. The funding will be used to support the delivery of the international café.
Improving mental health and emotional wellbeing in young people
- Southport Athletic Junior Football Club - To purchase a run-down building on the groups playing fields or alternatively an additional storage container and fencing in Sefton.
- Derry Matthews Academy CIC - The funding will be used to support young people that are not in education, employment or training to divert them away from crime or anti-social behaviour, in Liverpool.
- Employability Solutions - Employability Solutions is a registered Independent School, in Liverpool, offering an alternative secondary education for young people who thrive in a smaller, more nurturing setting than mainstream schools. The funding will be used to deliver a number of activities for children and young people with the aim of diverting them away from crime and anti-social behaviour.
- Granby Toxteth Development Trust (GTDT) - GTDT works with local communities to develop and empower people so that they can take a more active role in society and improve their quality of life. The funding will be used to offer a counselling and mental and emotional health support project for young people. The project, ‘Improving mental health and emotional wellbeing in Toxteth,’ will deliver a mix of activities, including counselling and advice sessions, equipping young people with prevention techniques and family support.
- The Opening Doors Project - The project holds a number of activities for the local community. The funding will be used to increase the number of activities and services at kids clubs, and will be available to all children aged 1-16 and their parents. (Liverpool)
- Parenting 2000 - Parenting 2000 runs a range of services that provide emotional and practical support, and information targeted at vulnerable children, young people and families in the community. The funding will be used to provide weekly, evening mental health and wellbeing drop in for children and young people. (Sefton)
Tackling violence and intimidation against women and girls
- Huyton Initiatives for Youth Activities - The initiative acts as a resource for young people, up to the age of 25 living in Huyton and the surrounding areas by providing advice and assistance, as well as programmes of activity to enable them to participate in society as independent, mature and responsible individuals. The funding wil be used to focus on tackling violence and intimidation against women and girls on Hillside estate in North Huyton. The project will establish a women’s group and a girls group for ages 13-18.
- Mind Balance Solutions CIC - The funding will be used to deliver a 3 month project which will have the aim of tackling violence and intimidation against women and girls, including domestic abuse. (Liverpool)
- Our House Walton Community Support Hub CIC - To deliver the ‘Together, we are empowered’ project to support vulnerable women, who have been victims of abuse. Sessions and workshops will improve participants mental health, confidence building and wellbeing support. (Liverpool)
- Kindfulness Coffee Club - Offering a variety of groups and services that promote emotional and social wellbeing and to help reduce social isolation and loneliness, to build self-confidence and worth. The funding will be used to provide the café drop-in service, which offers mentoring and peer support. (Sefton)
- The Inclusion Network CIC - A youth and community centre in the heart of Bootle. It was originally created to provide services for young people within the community. It now provides services for both children and adults. The funding will be used to provide a 12-week domestic abuse programme for victims of crime, violence and abuse. (Sefton)
- BEE Wirral CIC - Based in Birkenhead, the funding will be used to deliver a project called ‘EVE’ to Educate, Value and Empower women and girls through a series of safety awareness workshops. Workshops will also be delivered to include young men to raise awareness of domestic abuse and other issues, such as harassment, revenge porn and unsolicited online content.
- Rotunda Inclusive HUB CIC - The Hub empowers people of all ages and abilities through exercise and education. The funding will be used to provide a number of diversionary activities for children and young people. (Liverpool)