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The West Midlands Police and Crime Commissioner is releasing £189,000 to help communities in Birmingham and the Black Country make their areas safer.

The money, which is made up from cash that police have seized from criminals under the Proceeds of Crime Act, will be handed out to communities who want to invest in their neighbourhoods.

The scheme is now known as the Helping Communities Fund (HCF), but was previously labelled the Active Citizens Fund.

Its purpose is to support locally based projects which aim to make a positive difference and which make the West Midlands a safer place to live, learn or work.  All funded projects will contribute to crime prevention & reduction, and community safety in the local area. 

Since October 2021 the Commissioner has provided each Neighbourhood Policing Unit (NPU) with a share of the £400,000 budget to help fund community projects. Coventry NPU has allocated all its share in the first round of this fund in 2022 and therefore no further applications for Coventry projects can be considered this financial year.

The remaining Helping Communities Funds are now open to applications from Friday November 4th.

Bids must be submitted by noon on Friday 21st November; late applications will not be accepted.

Decisions will be made by community panels from W/C 1st December 2022.

Assistant Police and Crime Commissioner, Wasim Ali said: “I would encourage groups from across all areas to apply for funding.

“At a time when the cost of living is spiralling, it is right that there is funding to support grassroots organisations that reduce crime, violence and anti-social behaviour and support vulnerable victims in our communities.

We have seen a positive public response to the first community budgeting panels and they should be continued.’

Chief Superintendent Anthony Tagg added: ‘The launch of the Helping Communities Fund has enabled locally based projects and programmes to obtain funding for crime prevention & reduction, and community safety work across the West Midlands.

Now, as we enter they latter part of 2022 further funding is being made available to tackle issues that matter most to our communities. This funding is made available from money taken from criminals and those who seek to cause harm to our communities under the Proceeds of Crime Act. It’s then awarded to support local projects and activities in neighbourhoods from across the West Midlands.

Many community- led initiatives are benefitting from this investment, however the Helping Communities Fund also involves communities in deciding which bids are successful in receiving this money. I encourage everyone to consider applying to help make the West Midlands an even safer place to live and work’

Full information on the Helping Communities Fund and an application form can be found here.

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