Society opens its piggy bank to good causes

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Community housing projects and charities in Midlothian are being urged to put their case forward as Nationwide makes £250,000 available to help make a difference across Scotland.

The society is inviting applications for grants of up to £50,000 that have the potential to strengthen communities and help make a difference in local areas.

Projects could range from innovative new housing, improving rented accommodation conditions, to supporting the most vulnerable.

Applications would be welcomed from groups in Midlothian.

Gary Samson, Nationwide’s area director for Scotland, said: “As a building society, ensuring that everyone has a place fit to call home is at the heart of what we do. Nationwide was founded to help people save and borrow money for land and materials to build their own homes. One hundred and thirty years on, we still have the same core purpose – helping people into homes of their own.

“We recognise there is a housing crisis, resulting in many people living in unsuitable, insecure or unaffordable accommodation. So, we are delighted to award £250,000 to communities within Scotland to support housing projects and make a real difference.”

Nationwide members will get a final say on which projects are supported in their local communities and a Community Board, which is comprised of members, employees, housing charities and experts, has been appointed. The board will review all grant applications and put forward a number of local projects to a member vote. Nationwide members will then be able to vote, in branch or online, for a shortlist of charities to be awarded up to a maximum of £50,000.

Nationwide is now inviting applications. Full details can be found at: www.nationwide.co.uk/communityfunding or in local Nationwide branches.

Gary Samson continues: “Our members voted for us to donate at least one per cent of our pre-tax profits to good causes and asked that we focus on tackling housing issues.

“This is a fantastic way for them to make a difference to their local communities and tell us exactly where our funding should be focused.”