SSE wind farm funds create over £5.1m in opportunity for communities

SSE wind farm funds delivered £5,183,931 in support for community projects across the UK during 2017/18, a new report has shown.

In total, 463 projects have been supported across the UK including Scotland’s Charity Air Ambulance who were awarded £60,000 in funding.

The project enabled the charity to increase their flying hours to 12 hours per day. The service can reach 90% of the Scottish population within 25 minutes flying time.

Katie Wylie of Scotland’s Charity Air Ambulance said: “We are extremely grateful to the SSE local community funds for the support received this year towards extending our hours from 10 to 12 a day.  Since its launch in April 2017, 27% of call outs have taken place within these crucial additional hours.”

Other projects included £165,000 of funding decided by a public vote in Moffat in Dumfries and Galloway.

Published today, SSE’s 2017/18 Community Investment Review, documents every award made from SSE’s 29 community benefit funds from 1 April 2017 to 31 March 2018.

The report also reveals that for each £1 awarded by SSE through its grant-making programme, recipients sourced an additional £2.93 in match funding from other sources.

The funds are provided as a part of a commitment made during the development of SSE’s renewable energy projects in Great Britain from 2002 to the present day, with funding decisions taken by independent community panels or trusts.

In total, 463 not-for-profit projects received grants to the value of £5,183,931 in the 12-month period. A focus of the funds was sports and recreation with £629,217 invested in 19 different types of sporting activity. Skills and employment was a popular area across the funds with £1.2m provided to projects which increase people’s life chances – particularly fitting as 2018 is the ‘year of the young person’.

SSE’s Director of Sustainability, Rachel McEwen, said: “This year has been the most successful year yet for SSE’s community funds with over £5.1m of community investment funds available. It’s fantastic to see the work the funds have supported and we’re delighted to play an instrumental role in bringing these projects to fruition.

“I would like to thank the countless people who give up their time freely to sit on our panels or volunteer for their local Trust. Every single individual contributes to the success of our funds and without you I am in no doubt that SSE’s community funds would not have the success they do.”

SSE’s Community Investment Review 2017/18 is available here.

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