Local league offers microgrant program Four grants will soon be available for community projects

Parkdale Cromdale Community League runs many programs, ranging from a collective kitchen, art and music, to yoga and dance. Most of the programs are free, which is one way that the league encourages neighbours to connect.

Sebastian Barrera, league president, said the league is thriving, and even managed to have a little extra money this year. The board considered their options, and they decided to introduce a microgrant program. They are planning to give out four grants of $500, two this summer and another two later this year.

“We’re asking members of the community to apply for a grant to develop a project that has benefits to the community,” said Barrera.

This grant is meant to be seed money to kickstart an idea. He gives examples like block parties or workshops, or a project that develops community engagement, like the community garden that volunteers created two years ago.

“It started with some enthusiastic gardeners who came to the league and said, ’Hey, we would like to start a garden. We just need a small amount of money,’” he said. “A small project that starts with just one person can have an impact in our community.”

The league board is currently putting together some guidelines, which they will announce later this spring. While they are working out details, there are some parameters to applying. Applicants must be residents and members of the Parkdale Cromdale Community League, the money can’t be used to pay a salary, and the applicant must submit a report that shows the benefit to the community.

While the majority of their other programs are open to anyone, this grant will only be open to Parkdale Cromdale residents and community league members. Memberships can be purchased on the league’s website, in person during one of their regular meetings, or at an event.

“This is another way to reach out to people to let them know that Parkdale Cromdale Community League is open and welcoming new ideas and new members,” said Barrera. “We want people to feel excited to be part of our community, that things are happening, and they can access that.”

Once the league announces the grants, applications will be open until they find suitable projects. If this round of grants is successful, they will consider continuing the program next year.

“If we see a need, we will try in the future to get matching grants from the city for more.”

More information on the microgrants will be posted on league website at parkdalecromdale.org.

Featured Image: The grants are meant to help kickstart an idea. | Steven Townsend

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