Championed by the forward-thinking Chief Executive of West Lindsey District Council, Ms Manjeet Gill, the fund sought to help rural and community organisations to become more self-sufficient and deliver community-owned and community-controlled services and facilities in demand in their local area.
Newtoft Community Centre treasurer Judy Howard, joint secretary Steph Orr, vice chairman Rob Nelson and chairman Don Pavia and his wife Jackie celebrate their lottery grant for a new building and facilities (image taken from Commerce Industry).
West Lindsey District Council undertook a competitive tender and appointed CAN Invest and the Plunkett Foundation to manage the fund with additional support from Lincolnshire-based Community Lincs.
The fund was one of the few blended capital funds available for rural community enterprise during that period. Specifically, the CAF provided:
- Feasibility and development grants of up to £10,000
- Enterprise funding packages (50% grant/50% loan) of £10,000 - £100,000
The fund helped ‘hard to reach’ community groups to boost enterprising activities to meet local needs through sustainable business models, such as education, community engagement, exercise/ health and arts.