Macari Foundation amongst 142 to receive share of £3m from Stoke-on-Trent investment fund

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The Macari Foundation, which helps relieve poverty of the homeless, is among 142 projects to receive a share of the Stoke-on-Trent’s City Community Investment of £3 million.

This investment comes after Stoke-on-Trent received their final round of the City’s Community Investment, of £1.2 million, from the fund which launched in 2017.

The charity, which runs the Macari Centre in Hanley, are pleased to have secured £40,000 after being one of the first 60 projects to receive news that their third-round application was successful.  

The money the charity have acquired is set to be used to buy a minibus to support outreach work, day trips and appointments for centre users. 

The money will also be used on new equipment for the building. 

Ex-Stoke City manager Lou Macari, who set up the homeless shelter with the support of the city council in 2016, said: “This is brilliant news for us. We’re absolutely delighted to receive the money from the council. 

“The minibus will mean we can take people out to different places on day trips, many will be places they’ve never been before.

“I took a group of 30 homeless people to Blackpool on a coach previously and they all had such a fantastic day. 

“some of them have never seen the sea before, things that most people take for granted.

“We’ll also be able to use the minibus to get people to appointments, whether they are medical appointments or related to employment opportunities.”

Slyvester community trust, who are set to benefit from £50,000 of the fund, are planning to re-cultivate an area of ex-mining land on Oxford Road, on Fegg Hays and transform it into a inclusive community growing area. 

Susan Akkurt, chair lady of Sylvester Community Trust said : “We are looking forward to breaking ground in June or July. We are waiting for a lease from the council after the elections. 

“The garden will be called ‘Sylvester’s Garden and schools, local residence and a large amount of the community will be involved. It is for anybody and everybody. “ 

Other projects ranging from bringing disused land back to life, improving facilities for the city’s young footballers and protecting Stoke-on-Trent’s only Grade 1-listed building are said to be benefiting from the fund. 

Grants totalling up to £50,000 have already been made available which could be spent on new equipment or improvements to building and infrastructure.

Councillor Abi Brown, deputy leader of the city council, said: “We’re absolutely thrilled to have been able to support 142 groups and projects across the city with a share of £3 million from our community fund.

“You’re always a bit nervous when you launch something like this because you don’t know what the response will be like, but it’s incredible and some of the projects and ideas we have supported have been truly innovative and inspiring. 

“I’ve personally visited many of the projects myself and seen the impact the fund has had first hand. 

“it’s great to know the fund is going to have lasting, long-term benefits for people, groups and communities for years to come.”

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