Community First comes to an end for Ovenden and Warley

A Community Grant Scheme launched in 2011 has come to an end after having a positive impact on the areas involved over the last 4 years.

The government commissioned the Community Development Foundation (CDF) to manage the Community First Budget. Not all wards within Calderdale were allocated this money, which were based on a combination of need and what impact the recession has had on employment.

Ovenden and Warley were the two areas of focus in North and East Halifax and many projects have been funded throughout the scheme’s duration such as, Halifax in Bloom, the restoration of Warley cemetery and more recently the Ovenden Phoenix football club, which saw young adult males from Mixenden, Illingworth and Ovenden bring their communities and themselves closer together through hard work and sheer determination.

The total amount of grant money awarded since the scheme was launched is £118,685 with 71 grants ranging from £340 to £2,500 and the groups involved needing to match the grant, worked hard through means of voluntary work, cash donations, fundraising and saw a match total of £571,002.

The number of volunteers involved in running a group or project was 1,825 and the total number of people who have benefited from the Grant Scheme is 20,355.

To see a full breakdown of the projects funded and where the grants were awarded, please view the documents below:

Other funding available

Additional funds are available to support small voluntary sector and community organisations and activities through the Small Grants fund and the Community festival and event fund.

Start your New Year with £2500

Year 2 – round 4 Community First in Ovenden opens on Monday 6 January 2014.

Community First gives local groups and projects the opportunity to put great ideas into practice. If you’ve  got a good idea for a project in the Ovenden ward, then apply for a grant of up to £2500!

Latest groups to receive a Ovenden Community First Grant:

Group Amount awarded For
New Horizons Cafe £1360 Digital inclusion project – to enable a wide range of services for those who don’t have access to the internet
St George’s Church £1100 Refurbish the church community hall with a new cooker and water heater
Illingworth Cricket Club £680 Ovenden Community Cricket – to pay for professional coaches to teach junior age children to play cricket, culminating in a summer cricket festival
Dean Field Parents and Friends Association £2004 Community Enrichment Project – to involve children in a planting project on Cousin Lane and to purchase  stationary and IT equipment for the group
Calderdale community       childcare company. £1407 To purchase play and learn equipment for the St George’s Pre school
Lee Mount School Parents and Teachers Association. £500 To purchase a range of craft equipment for the Christmas Fair

If you’ve  got a good idea for a project in the Ovenden ward, then apply for a grant of up to £2500!

Round 4 closes Monday 24 February 2014.

Community First Summer 2013 Evaluation Update

We are delighted to be able to share with you the first update from the evaluation of the Community First programme.

The update is part of a broader evaluation of the programme by Ipsos MORI and nef consulting on behalf of the Cabinet Office and is based on the response to two surveys by over 400 Panel members and 1,500 projects who have received Community First funding.

Please click here for more details.

If you have any questions about the evaluation please email 

Want to make it happen in Ovenden? – Round 2 open now

Community First in Ovenden gives local groups and projects the opportunity to put great ideas into practice.

Year 2 Round 2 is now open and groups can apply for a grants up to £2500 for activities that benefit the Ovenden ward.

This Summer children (and parents) can enjoy a Summer Holiday Club for children aged 7-11 years for just £5 per week thanks to funding from Community First.

Activities will include Tie Dye t-shirts, Badge Making, Conga Shakers, Brazilian Masks, Hawaiian Skirts & necklaces, cooking, Caribbean Steel Drumming and more…
For more info contact or ring 01422 353613 / 07770974611.

If your group has a good idea for a project and you need some advice and support applying for Community First funding, please ring us on 01422 255402.

Round 2 is now closed.

Fancy £2500 for your group or project in Ovenden?

Community First Round 1 is now open for applications and there’s £10,233 in the pot!

This must be spent on grants for activities and projects that benefit Ovenden Ward.

Each grant must be no smaller than £250 and no bigger than £2,500 and must be match funded by volunteer time, gifts in kind, or cash donations. 

Click here>> to find out how to apply for the next round of Ovenden Community First before the closing date Monday 24 June 2013.

What next for Ovenden?…

Ovenden is a great place:

  • OSCA – The biggest community run sporting venue in Calderdale
  • Innovations – Calderdale’s first Sure Start Children’s Centre
  • Crossley Juniors – The largest junior football club in Calderdale
  • Threeways at the Ridings – The biggest community asset transfer in the country

But what next?

  • Can we make it safer, cleaner and greener?
  • We’ve had the best GCSE results ever for local children but how can we help our young people flourish?
  • How do we make Ovenden an even better place to live?

We want YOU to tell us your priorities for your community

Come along and have your say at an event for all Ovenden residents on Monday 18 February 

At Lee Mount Baptist Church


Have a cuppa with us and scribble your ideas on our Ovenden Master Plan map, and add to our online version.

Can’t come to the drop—in?

The Ovenden Community First Panel want to consult with as many groups and people as possible in the area to ensure that the plan represents different views from the community. Have your say on things that matter to you, here…

Community First Reaching New Heights

Kirsty Healey attended the St Georges Youth Project as a teenager for a bit of fun but ended up finding a vocation.

When Community First came to Ovenden at the beginning of 2012, offering small grants to local community groups, the St Georges Youth Project was granted £2,500 in the first round of funding to pay for a Youth Worker apprentice. Kirsty, who was already helping out as a volunteer with younger members of the project applied for the job and was successful.

Left: Kirsty half way up Scafell Pike
Right: Sara (Kirsty’s Line Manager) who also completed the 3,200ft mountain climb

As well as completing a NVQ level 2 qualification and making a start on level 3, over the past six months Kirsty has mainly been working on the Groundwork Project, which provides opportunities for young people aged 12 – 16 years to learn arts, woodwork and cooking skills.

Youngsters get to try new things, work as a team and interact socially and for the benefit of the local community; the young people have cleaned up the area around the for the New Horizons coffee shop, made planters, spray painted the Noah’s Ark logo on the container at the side of the shop and are currently making a mosaic for the side of the charity shop.

Kirsty says she wasn’t very well behaved child at school and didn’t get brilliant GCSE results but working at St Georges has given her the opportunity to make something of herself and aim towards a successful career. She plans to go to university eventually.

“If it hadn’t been for people believing in me and pushing me to achieve my goals I’m not really sure what I would be doing right now. What I do know is that I wouldn’t of learnt half the stuff that I know now, not only about this line of work but about myself!”

St Georges Youth Project recently secured a further £2,400 from Community First to extend Kirsty’s apprenticeship for a further 6 months.

4 More Projects Approved for Grants in October

To date 12 local projects have received funding at a total value of £26,589 from the Ovenden Community First Panel.

At its meeting on Monday 29 October 2012, the panel recommended a further 4 projects for funding.

St George’s Youth Project £4,900 To fund an apprentice youth worker
OSCA foundation £2,500 To improve public access to playing fields
Noah’s Ark Centre £4,795 To pay for professional supervision for volunteer counsellors
Lee Mount and Ovenden Events Committee £2,500 To organise Shrogg’s Park gala and purchase a marquee
Ovenden RLFC £1,800 To purchase a range of sports equipment and pay for publicity
22nd Halifax Boys Brigade £972.66 To purchase a new table tennis and pool table
Dads ‘R’ Us £1,000 To purchase a range of gardening equipment
Lee Mount Girls Brigade £1,000 New laptops
Ovenden Girls and Ladies Sport £2,490 A range of sports equipment
Lee Mount Variety Productions £2,500 Stage lights, microphones, headsets
Crossley Juniors FC £1,000 Football equipment
Laurel Crescent Bowls Club £1132 Bowls Green maintenance work
Grand Total £26,589.66

Click here>> to find out how to apply for the next round of Ovenden Community First before the closing date Thursday 31 January 2012.