The Port of Cromarty Firth has donated more than £16,000 to good causes around the Firth in 2017, through its Community Sponsorship Programme. Launched a number of years ago, the programme sponsors a variety of different community projects and clubs.
This year’s recipients include: the Cromarty Rowing Club, Explore Easter Ross, Invergordon Boat Club, Invergordon Seafarers and the Cromarty Archaeology Project.
In 2017, the Port also committed to providing £10,000 per annum, for the next three years, to the Ross Sutherland Rugby Club. With this funding, the club (which has the largest catchment of any sports club in the UK) will be able to expand its youth development activities and run more girls’ rugby sessions. This support has helped to secure development opportunities, including the employment of two local coaches and a full-time rugby development officer.
Nearly £1000, was pledged to the Cromarty Firth Men’s Shed, which will allow for the maintenance and renovation of two community log cabins. The first initiative will be to provide fresh water and toilet facilities. Set in the beautiful setting of the Milton Woodland, the Men’s’ Shed programme provides a meeting place for older men and helps to promote physical and mental wellbeing of their members. The Port hope to be working with the Cromarty Firth Men’s Shed in 2018 to help with their renovation. This will ultimately be of benefit to the whole area.
The Port will also be donating £1000, for the next three years, to the Lord Lieutenant’s Youth Award, which recognises young people for outstanding achievements, in spite of challenging circumstances or restrictions. Past winners have included those who are mentally or physically challenged or who have sacrificed time to care for a relative.
Bob Buskie, Chief Executive of the Port of Cromarty Firth, said: “We are delighted to work closely with the communities that border the Firth. This year’s list was very varied and we enjoy reading the submissions and learning more about the important work that goes on in the area. We look forward to hearing from organisations, old and new, and seeing what opportunities 2018 will bring.”
The Community Sponsorship Programme aspires to improve, safeguard and develop Cromarty Firth communities, for the benefit of the local people. Community projects, schools or local charities based in one of the nine communities that border the Cromarty Firth are welcome to apply for support from the fund. They can do so by submitting an application form stating the project’s objectives, aspirations and the benefits to the community, along with a letter/email of support from their local Community Council. Projects must be collaborative and meet one of four qualifying criteria: skills development, employability or job creation, vessel crew or passenger support, environmental protection or enhancement, events or projects which encourage inter-community collaboration. Applications are reviewed on a quarterly basis and the deadline for submissions are the last day of March, June, September and December. Application forms are available from firstname.lastname@example.org.