Businesses give community grants to worthy causes

JOY The charity Wetwheels has been given a cash boost
JOY The charity Wetwheels has been given a cash boost
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THREE community organisations have been handed a share of cash from a group of Portsmouth businesses to help them continue their good work.

The Arise project, launched by Gunwharf Quays’ parent company Land Securities, alongside Wightlink and Vail Williams, has granted funding to Connor’s Toy Library, Portsmouth Shopmobility, Wetwheels and Park Community School after each group was successfully chosen by an independent awards selection committee.

They will each share in a £2,700 fund handed out by Arise, which stands for the Alliance to Reward Initiatives and Social Enterprise.

Gunwharf Quays’ centre manager Séan Sweeney, who chairs the Arise board, said: ‘It gives us great pleasure to be able to support and award our first applicants with the vital funds they need.

‘It is very rewarding to see the organisations making use of the money and we’re all looking forward to receiving further applications ahead of our next committee meeting in April.’

Connor’s Toy Library, a charity that provides games and community resources to local people, was granted £800 to buy new toys for children with special needs.

Portsmouth Shopmobility, which provides wheelchairs and scooters for those with limited mobility, was also granted £800 to help purchase a collapsible holiday vehicle.

Wetwheels, which offers wheelchair users a chance to go powerboating safely, was awarded £300 to fund a trip for 20 people on board the boat, which is based at Gunwharf’s marina.

Gus Mckechnie, the charity’s general manager, said: ‘Last year we were able to take 700 disabled people out on Wetwheels and this year we hope to increase that number.

‘We welcome enquiries from disabled people living in Portsmouth who might like to apply for one of the 20 Arise funded places.’

The Arise committee includes Nickii Humphreys, licensing manager at Portsmouth City Council; Cath Longhurst, chief executive of Portsmouth EBP; and former city Lord Mayor Paula Riches.

To apply for funding see gunwharf-quays.com.