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  • Writer's pictureJake B

FFCS reflects on a remarkable year of community impact

As we step into 2024, FFCS reflects on a year of partnerships and impactful community initiatives. The combination of effective asset management and rising energy prices has allowed FFCS to invest surplus funds into meaningful, local community projects across West Sussex. Explore the community highlights from the past year below.

1. Supporting Sussex Kelp Restoration Project

In June 2022, FFCS committed £55,000 to the Sussex Kelp Restoration Project under a three-year funding agreement. This initiative aimed to support the project's objectives and ongoing work. The funds were utilised to cover the costs of a dedicated officer, the Sussex Kelp Recovery Co-ordinator. The results have been nothing short of impressive, with a significant expansion of mussel beds (1000 meters wide), zero reported kelp loss, and a noticeable increase in lobster and perceived cetacean numbers.

National Recognition: The positive impact of the Sussex Kelp Restoration Project reached a national audience in September 2023 when the BBC1 documentary "Our Sea Forest" aired. The documentary showcased the journey of a local free diver witnessing the loss and subsequent recovery of Sussex Kelp, bringing attention to the importance of environmental conservation efforts.

2. Partnerships for Community Support and Energy Advice

In November 2023, FFCS provided funding support to Selsey Money Support to establish a partnership with The National Energy Foundation (NEF). This collaboration, rooted in community well-being, aims to assist Selsey and Sidlesham households facing financial challenges related to energy bills. The partnership focuses on providing financial aid, streamlining dispute resolution, and facilitating access to grants for energy-efficient measures. If you live in Selsey or Sidlesham, we encourage you to visit the Selsey Community Forum for insights into the support on offer.

3. Empowering Local Initiatives through our Grant Fund

In January 2023, FFCS allocated £20,000 to eleven local organisations with community-driven and environmentally-focused projects. Beneficiaries included UKHarvest, Good Morning Call Selsey, and Youth Dream (Selsey) Ltd, among others, showcasing the diverse range of community projects supported. In addition, FFCS has supported Selsey Academy's science department by sponsoring 50% of the initial setup and ongoing costs for the first car in the Green Power car project!

4. Stepping into 2024

In the past year, we've supported some remarkable social and environmental projects through our community solar farm. Looking ahead, our commitment continues as we plan to support a variety of initiatives, combining small grants with long-term impactful projects. Excitingly, we will be introducing 'Solar Soft Loans' tailored for local schools and community buildings! Visit our Solar Soft Loans page to find out more.


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