The first community benefit money from the Viking Community Fund is now available for funding local projects.
Managed by the Shetland Community Benefit Fund the Advanced Grant Scheme is open to projects supported by any of Shetland’s 18 community councils. Local or Shetland-wide groups, charities, social enterprises or even business and individuals can apply to SCBF for a grant from the VCF (restrictions apply to applications from business and individuals).
£340,000 will be available for projects in the first 12 months. The four community councils which have a Viking turbine in its area – Delting, Tingwall Whiteness and Weisdale, Nesting and Lunnasting, and Sandsting and Aithsting – will have £50,000 available for projects while the other 14 community councils will have £10,000 each.
During the construction of the windfarm SCBF and Viking Energy Wind Farm have an agreement that will see £400,000 a year going to SCBF to operate the grant scheme and develop its plans for when the main community benefit funds of £2.2 million a year start once the wind farm operational.
SCBF chair, Chris Bunyan, said he hoped there would be imaginative ways of using the grant money to support local communities – as well as being used to help open up funding from other sources. Businesses can apply to help retain essential skills in a local community through training or apprenticeships. Any application must have the support of the local community council to be awarded a grant.
Full details of the grant scheme are available on the Shetland Community Benefit Fund website.