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Tuesday, 22 September 2020

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Young Londoners to benefit from HS2 Community Fund award for summer basketball programme

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YOUNG Londoners in Ealing will benefit from a £5,213 grant secured last week being used to provide a grassroots summer basketball coaching programme and tournament.

Ball Out Community, a charity based in London, has secured the funding following its successful application to the HS2 Community and Environment Fund (CEF).

The focus of the project is to use basketball to create a positive environment creating community cohesion, and providing an active deterrent from anti-social and negative behaviour. The programme of free coaching sessions will be running over August across locations in West London.

The funding has come from the HS2 Community and Environment Fund (CEF) – one of two funds, with a combined total of £40million, available to local communities and businesses that are demonstrably disrupted by the construction of HS2 between London and the West Midlands. To date over £7million has been distributed from the Community and Environment Fund and Business and Local Economy Fund (BLEF), with 121 projects benefitting, in total.

Speaking about the benefit the funding will have for Young Londoners, Julius Joseph from Ball Out Community, said:

“We are really excited to have the support of the HS2 fund in the delivery of our Ball Out community project this summer. The HS2 fund will enable us to deliver everything we planned and we can not wait to get started. Basketball has proved itself extraordinarily good at engaging the most underprivileged communities and we will work hard to ensure that happens with the quality we are used to delivering in those areas disrupted by the HS2 construction.”

Cathy Elliott, Independent Chair of the HS2 Community and Business Funds said:

“It is great that the HS2 Funds are being used to support young Londoners with projects seeking to promote sport and create community cohesion. One aim of the Funds is to create a lasting legacy in areas near the HS2 route which this project will certainly do.

“The Funds are available to support local communities and businesses that are impacted by the construction of HS2 and I encourage other organisations near to the line of route to apply and gain the tangible benefits of these Funds.”

Thirteen projects in London have received support since the funding programme opened for applications in March 2017. Other community groups that have benefitted include the Royal Brompton and Harefield NHS Trust who last month were confirmed to have received £74,380 to create peace and healing gardens at Harefield hospital to enhance the wellbeing of patients in their care.

As construction of HS2 gets underway, applications for the funds are still being welcomed. The Funds for Phase One, independently administered by community charity Groundwork UK, support urban and rural, community, environmental and business projects.

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