Last year I proposed that the County Council introduce a Dragon’s Den style prize fund to support environmental projects. I was promised then that the Council would bring forward its own scheme and it has now done so. The Council’s press release says:
A £70,000 online crowd funding scheme, to support environmental and community projects, is set to be launched by the county council. Crowd Fund Norfolk would enable communities to bid for the council to fund half the cost of a local environmental scheme, with the community raising the remainder. The maximum grant would be £15,000.
The first phase, focusing on tree planting and supporting our nationally important windmill heritage, also supports the council’s commitment to plant one million trees, in line with our environmental policy and Norfolk’s 25 Year environment plan.
A report to the council’s cabinet says: “There is potential for this platform to boost community engagement by supporting community-driven projects benefitting local areas. A wide section of the community can be engaged through the crowdfunding process and the engagement enables significant financial contributions to be raised from the community for projects that matter most to them.
The report says the £70,000 could attract up to three times that amount in match funding from the community and other sources.