The Welsh Government has awarded a series of small grants to community cooperative projects in order to protect and help the Welsh language to thrive.
Community groups were invited to apply for funding to set up or support co-operatives, social enterprises, and community-led housing. 21 applications succeeded in securing funding. The grants, known as Prosiect Perthyn, were managed by Cwmpas, a development agency supporting cooperatives and social enterprises.
One of the successful projects will see a former chapel in Pembrokeshire, now owned by the community, turned into a local heritage centre and café with two affordable flats. CarTrefUn is a community housing and heritage project based in Hermon, which has received £12,500 to further this project.
Aberdyfi Community Projects Ltd has been awarded £12,000 towards its goal of supporting the Welsh language in Aberdyfi by creating a sustainable economic community and accommodation for local people. This funding will help them as they purchase the Penrhos Garage and Post Office building which are important to the community as they employ and provide accommodation to local people.
The Welsh Government has already taken significant action to help ensure that the number of second homes and short-term holiday lets can be managed effectively.
The Minister for Education and Welsh Language, Jeremy Miles, said:
“The Welsh language belongs to us all, and that includes every community in Wales. I’m pleased to see the creative ideas proposed by community groups across the country. These grants will help create opportunities, provide affordable housing and help protect the Welsh Language.”
Minister for Economy, Vaughan Gething said:
“Social enterprises and community-led cooperatives are an important part of the social and economic landscape in Wales - providing good quality job opportunities, supporting local economies and in many cases safeguarding community assets and vital services. That’s why supporting them to develop and grow is a key aim of the Welsh Government.
“I’m pleased we have been able to support this project, which is playing an important role in helping co-operatives and social enterprises to support Welsh-speaking communities. Delivering this project through Cwmpas has also ensured the project aligns and benefits from the wider support available through Social Business Wales.”
Jocelle Lovell, Director of Inclusive Communities at Cwmpas said:
“We are delighted to be working with partners to deliver the Perthyn project. Perthyn works with the communities to identify ways to address the lack of affordable housing, protect community assets and create new cooperatives and social businesses. A real enabler for us has been administering a small grant pilot scheme for the communities to help build local capacity and accelerate their business and housing ideas. We look forward to seeing the ideas develop and to working with more communities over the coming months.”