MORE than £400,000 has become available for investment in local groups and communities within North Ayrshire.

The Scottish Government has released £15million across Scotland to support mental health and wellbeing amongst communities, with £407,000 made available within the council area.

The funds will be distributed via the local Third Sector Interface - Arran Community and Voluntary Service (CVS) and The Ayrshire Community Trust - from January 2022, however, groups can start applying for up to £50,000 from November 22 via a simple application process.

The TSI is being well supported by local statutory partners to help ensure project outcomes are focused on identified needs in North Ayrshire.

Vicki Yuill, chief officer at Arran CVS, said: “We really encourage all groups to apply – no group is too small and you do not need to have mental health as your main focus, so long as there is clear benefit to the mental wellbeing of people in your community.”

“Our funding programme will be split into three tiers – grants of up to £2,000, £10,000 and a few allocations of up to £50,000 – ensuring our application process is flexible and accessible by all kinds of groups, regardless of where they are in their journey.”

“We want to move away from a competitive funding model and look favourably on community groups building relationships and working together to better coordinate support where it is needed most, particularly around those who may have been disproportionately affected by the pandemic.”

Development officers are welcoming conversations at any point in the process and can support groups with applications.

Information sessions conducted via Zoom will take place throughout the month of November will be available to ask questions.

For Irvine on Tuesday, November 16 at 3.30pm via

For Kilwinning on Wednesday, November 17 at 10am via

For the Three Towns on Wednesday, November 17 at 12pm via

For Garnock Valley on Wednesday, November 17 at 2pm via

For North Coast on Thursday, November 18 at 1pm via