Funding from one of the region’s largest providers of affordable housing has helped to create the first community café in a County Durham village.
A new community café has opened its doors in Easington Colliery thanks to funding from believe housing.
Easington Social Welfare Centre has created the facility for the village, which has no other café facilities of any kind. The café is expected to give a boost to a variety of community groups as well as providing low-cost refreshments.
Already local knitting and St John Ambulance groups have expressed an interest in using the café to hold their meetings. A host of other groups are also considering the new facilities on Seaside Lane as a base.
believe housing provided £500 to the community café project through its ‘believe housing community grant’ programme. The funding has kitted out the café with furniture, meeting around half of the set up costs.
believe housing Funding Officer, Damian Pearson, said: “Easington Social Welfare Centre spotted a clear need in their community and found a solution that didn’t need a huge amount of funding to bring to fruition. It’s exactly the kind of project that our believe housing community grant programme was created to help.
“I’m sure the café will be a real boost to Easington Colliery. It’s great to know that we’ve been able to play such a significant role in making this opening possible.”
Stephen Fergus, Secretary of Easington Social Welfare Centre said: “The support from this grant has helped us to build a sustainable future. It might have been a relatively small amount but the impact it has already had has snowballed and benefitted the whole community. ”
The application process for ‘believe housing community grant’ has been kept deliberately simple and funding decisions will be made monthly to ensure local groups are not waiting for lengthy periods to find out if they have been successful.