CALA Bursary boosts Midlothian projects

Pit Pony Productions received a grant from the Cala Homes Midlothian Bursary.
Pit Pony Productions received a grant from the Cala Homes Midlothian Bursary.

Two local organisations devoted to making a difference in their communities, are among the recipients of the annual CALA Homes Bursary, run in partnership with the Midlothian Advertiser.

Pit Pony Productions and the Mayfield and Easthouses Youth 2000 Project (Y2K) received a share of £10,000 after deliberation from a panel of CALA staff and Midlothian Advertiser editor Janet Bee. From men’s sheds to playgroups, this year’s scheme is the second in Midlothian and awarded grants to 13 good causes throughout the region.

The two worthy causes below highlight some of the important work being done to help communities get creative in Midlothian.

Having run for seven years now, Pit Pony Productions in Newtongrange has been staging pantomimes and travelling around local schools and care homes to great success. The group aims to build confidence in its members and to provide entertainment which is accessible to the whole of the surrounding area.

Doreen Hamilton, Pit Pony’s secretary, said: “We’ve been on the go for a long time now and any profits we make get ploughed into the next production.

“We used these funds from CALA to help with our production at the end of June in the Mining Museum – a comedy which ran for three nights. CALA’s donation is a real boost and gives us something to do that wee bit extra that otherwise wouldn’t be possible.”

Established in the year 2000, the Mayfield and Easthouses Youth Project is a youth-led community project that works with disadvantaged young people from the ages of 11-18. Y2K offers drop-ins, support for offenders and those “at risk” of offending, targeted group work and one-to-one support.

The group plans to use its share of the bursary to offer a programme of fun and educational activities and trips over the summer holidays.

Lyndsey Ritchie, Youth Work co-ordinator, said: “We work with young people from all backgrounds with drop-in centres and groups in the evening and we also do one-to-one support with the local high schools. The young people choose to work with us and nobody tells them they have to. We’re a full time, Monday to Saturday organisation.

“We depend on funding like this from CALA. The money we’ve been awarded will allow us to run things over the summer holidays, which can be a difficult time for a lot of kids.”

For further information on the bursary, visit www.cala.co.uk/bursary-midlothian.