Three community groups focused on supporting people to get active, boost their mental health and meet people in their local areas are the latest organisations to be awarded funding from the Isle of Wight Foundation.
Swim the Wight, Brighstone Lawn Tennis Club Ltd, and Football for All at Seagrove Pavilion have between them been awarded £36,759, a share of more than £90,000 given to nine good causes this year by the partners behind Island Roads: Ringway Island Roads, Island Roads Services, Meridiam and Vinci Concessions.
Grant recipients already announced include Care in the Garden, Vectis Radio’s 4Ps Training School, People Matter IW and the Isorropia Foundation. More projects to receive funding will be announced in the new year.
Sea swimming group Swim the Wight have been awarded £16,000 towards a new vehicle to transport safety equipment. Victoria Thorneton-Field from the group said: “Our sessions take place at beaches all around the Island so it is important for us to have a reliable vehicle to get us and our safety equipment to our sea swimming locations.
“We have around 40 regular swimmers and more than 100 who join us for ad-hoc sessions to enjoy the physical and mental wellbeing benefits of cold-water swimming.
“Our aim is to make sea swimming as accessible as possible, so our group provides the appropriate help, advice, assistance and support with qualified instructors with appropriate safety equipment on hand at risk assessed locations.
“The new van will make it much easier for us to transport kit around the Island and allow us to expand the number of sessions we can provide, giving more people the opportunity to experience the health benefits that sea swimming provides.”
Brighstone Lawn Tennis Club Ltd has been awarded £15,000 towards the resurfacing of its tennis courts, which are regularly used by around 100 members as well as non-members – for a nominal fee. The courts are also made available at no charge to the local school for PE lessons.
Club chairman John Clarke said: “The courts are well used by the local community who use the facilities to keep active, boost their wellbeing and meet one another. The funding from the IW Foundations will allow us to get the courts resurfaced early next year and keep this important community resource open for years to come – providing an accessible place for everybody, both young and old, to keep fit by playing tennis either just for fun or more competitively.”
Seagrove Pavilion Trust has been granted £5,759 to purchase equipment needed to run walking football session. The club hopes to attract new members – both young and old – to the accessible sport.
Martyn Heather from the Seagrove Pavilion Trust said: “We are delighted to receive this grant from the Isle of Wight Foundation. It will enable us to develop our current walking football group whilst allowing us to train volunteers to start up a junior section for the local community.
“In these difficult times it is important to give all ages an opportunity to undertake healthy activities in a supportive and caring environment which enhances participants wellbeing. The equipment we can now buy with this grant is essential in helping us realise these aims.”
Rob Gillespie, Chairman of the Isle of Wight Foundation said: “We are really pleased to be supporting local groups which are making such a positive difference to people’s lives and building stronger communities. We look forward to following the progress of these projects through 2023.”
To date the Isle of Wight Foundation has awarded more than £700,000 to good causes on the Isle of Wight. More information can be found at www.islandroads.com/iw-foundation.