The Near Neighbours programme, funded by the Department for Communities and Local Government, aims to bring people together in communities that are ethnically and religiously diverse. The work of Near Neighbours enables people to get to know each other better, build relationships of trust, and collaborate on initiatives that improve their local communities. This is achieved through the capacity building work of Near Neighbours’ local coordinators and national partners; programmes of leadership development; and a small grants fund that resources and catalyses social action in diverse communities.
The Near Neighbours small grants fund provides grants of £250 to £5,000 to support projects which:
- Bring together peoples of two or more different faiths and/or ethnicities to build friendships and develop relationships of trust;
- Work locally, enabling people from the same street, estate or neighborhood to come together;
- Work sustainably, nurturing long term relationships that will last beyond the period of funding;
- Work to improve the community, making it a better place to live;
- Involve people from more than one faith group or ethnicity in planning the project and making it happen.
This report explores the impact of Near Neighbours’ small grant fund administered in the 2016/17 funding cycle, focusing on two of the programme’s key aims: bringing together people of different faiths and ethnicities to build relationships of trust; and encouraging people to work together to make their communities a better place to live.