Renewable energy firm Ventient Energy and the Community Foundation Tyne & Wear and Northumberland will support community projects in Northumberland with a grants programme totalling £183,500.
Following the installation of two windfarms near Widdrington village in Northumberland, the Sisters and North Steads Community Benefit Fund – managed by the Community Foundation Tyne and Wear on behalf of Ventient Energy – will make a payment of £133,500 in annual benefit with an extra £50,000 being made available in the first year for local projects and good causes.
The North Steads Wind Farm and the Sisters Wind Farm became operational in November, the projects will to provide annual funding to the local area of £133,500 for an expected 25-year lifetime.
Scott Mackenzie, CEO of Ventient Energy, said: “Renewable energy is a force for good both locally and globally. It is Ventient Energy’s aim to always be a good long-term neighbour in communities around our wind farms and we work with landowners and communities through community funding to help them deliver local projects to meet their specific needs. We are delighted that the community fund is now open for business and confident that it will make an impact on many worthwhile projects in the local area throughout the next 25 years.”
Pete Barrett, senior programme advisor at the Community Foundation, said: “We're delighted to work with Ventient Energy to ensure that the Sisters and North Steads Community Benefit Fund can go further to help projects on their doorstep, strengthen communities, improve lives and support local people in and around the Widdrington area.
“The interest and commitment shown by local people who will give their time by contributing to the advisory panel for this fund has been absolutely fantastic and we are looking forward to working with them to provide support to many vital local projects and community groups over the lifetime of the fund.
“We are the UK’s biggest Community Foundation, and that’s in no small part to programmes like the Ventient Energy Sisters and North Steads Community Benefit Fund. Collectively, our donors have helped us to build more than £80million in total from local giving and philanthropy. We hope that more people and firms make corporate social responsibility an important focus and follow in their footsteps.”