Joan McAlpine MSP has urged community groups, farmers and businesses to apply for a record tranche of EU and Government as the deadline fast approaches.
The £5.6 million of LEADER funding is made up equally by the Scottish Government and the European Union. It is a record allocation for Dumfries and Galloway and the third highest allocation in Scotland this time – after the Highlands and Ayrshire.
The deadline for expressions of interest is 9 March. Match funding is required.
Ms McAlpine had a meeting last week with Nicola Hill, Dumfries and Galloway LEADER Programme Manager to find out more about the funding available to local groups. After the meeting she said:
“The size of this LEADER funding is considerable and is a very good deal for the region. LEADER has something of a reputation for being complicated for small groups and organisations to administer, so I was keen to meet with LEADER to find out whether this was the case and how it can be overcome.
“Nicola explained how the expression of interest could be quite wide-ranging and that there is a lot of support from the LEADER team to help groups and individuals hone their application to meet the criteria. The advice available locally is excellent and while there is a process to go through, there is a wealth of support to help make this valuable funding as accessible as possible to local groups.
“We have one of the best regarded LEADER teams in Scotland, which is reflected in the record £5.6 million funding for Dumfries and Galloway. This level of revenue coming into Dumfries and Galloway illustrates how important EU funding is to our region. I will personally be encouraging several local groups to take advantage of this funding opportunity, and I would urge all community groups and organisations in the region to explore how they may be able to benefit.”
Expressions of interest can be made via the website here: https://www.ruralnetwork.scot/funding/leader