AirS Announces £350,000 National Lottery Funding for Sussex Village Action Plus

Landmark, 3-year project with Rother Voluntary Action to boost rural community services.

AirS is proud to announce it has secured National Lottery funding from the Big Lottery Fund to build its rural community support services. AirS will be working in partnership with Rother Voluntary Action to provide essential advice and practical guidance for communities and volunteers in rural Lewes, Wealden and Rother districts.

The Sussex Village Action Plus project will officially begin in October 2017 and will aim to sustain a far-reaching support network of community volunteers, as well as helping to revitalise some existing organisations.  In particular, it will tackle access to service issues in some of the remoter parts of the county, reducing social isolation and loneliness for the most vulnerable local residents.

AirS has eighty years’ experience helping communities to identify their needs and empowering them to develop strong volunteer support networks. Its highly skilled development workers, or Village Agents, help local people deliver everything from Good Neighbour Schemes, befriending services, improved community transport links, community cafes and garden projects, to health and exercise classes, lunch clubs and much, much more.

Teresa Gittins, Head of Services at AirS, commented: “This is a fantastic project for us to be involved in and we’re pleased to be working alongside the team at RVA. Our charity is very much a catalyst for change in rural areas, helping local people with the practical advice and mentoring they need to improve the lives of their whole community.”

“We’re delighted to be able to announce this significant grant and the huge benefit it will make to rural communities,” added Jeremy Leggett, CEO of AirS. “With no access to mainstream services, we provide the safety net to ensure that, as far as possible, the needs of rural residents are met locally.”

Big Lottery Fund

  • The Big Lottery Fund is the largest funder of community activity in the UK. We put people in the lead to improve their lives and communities, often through small, local projects.
  • We are responsible for giving out 40% of the money raised by National Lottery players for good causes. Last year we awarded £583 million and supported around 12,000 projects across the UK for health, education, environment and charitable purposes.
  • Since June 2004 we have awarded over £8 billion to projects that change the lives of millions of people.

“Supporting rural communities in Sussex to be vibrant and diverse places in which to live and work.”