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Community-led organisations from across Scotland are invited to apply to the Scottish Government’s Climate Challenge Fund (CCF) for funding to support local projects that tackle climate change.


To date, the CCF has awarded grants totalling £85.8 million – <a href=””>supporting a range of successful projects</a>, including energy efficiency improvements to community-owned buildings, home energy efficiency advice, lower carbon travel options and community growing initiatives, plus schemes that help reduce waste and move Scotland further towards a more circular economy. 72 CCF grant awards have been made to ethnic minority communities.


Keep Scotland Beautiful manages the CCF on behalf of the Scottish Government and has staff that support applicants and those awarded grants. Additional support for CCF applicants from ethnic minority communities is available from CEMVO Scotland who are working in partnership with Keep Scotland Beautiful. Please contact Zarina Ahmad by email or phone: <a href=””></a> or 07818 533 370.


<strong><u><a href=””>CCF grants of up to £150,000</a></u></strong><strong> </strong>per organisation, per year, are available for projects taking place between 1 April 2018 and 31 March 2020*. <em>The deadline to submit an Expression of Interest, the first stage of the application process for a CCF Grant, is 17:00 on 28 August 2017.</em>


<strong><u><a href=””>CCF Development Grants</a></u></strong><strong> </strong>of up to £1,500 are available until further notice to help community-led organisations identify and scope out potential climate action projects – with the aim of enabling the organisation to apply for a CCF grant or to another funder. <em>Applications for Development Grants are invited monthly.</em>


Potential applicants are encouraged to visit the <u><a href=””>CCF website</a></u> to find out if their organisation and project idea is eligible for funding. Keep Scotland Beautiful advise all potential applicants to submit an <u><a href=””>Expression of Interest</a></u> as soon as possible, (deadline is 17:00 on 28 August 2017), to allow as much time as possible to develop their application.


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*<em>For 2018-2019 some CCF Grant Recipients (with projects involving waste and circular economy activities, or installation of energy efficient measures in community-owned buildings) will be match funded through the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF). The ERDF comes from the</em> <u><a href=””>European Structural and Investment Fund</a></u>.

Refugees Voice – ELREC and Drummond Community High School event,

6th December 2016

On Tuesday 6th December the Edinburgh and Lothians Regional Equality Council (ELREC) in partnership with Drummond Community High School, organised an event in support of the refugee community in Edinburgh & Lothians. A number of organisations and groups were invited to participate and have stalls to promote their work. The purpose of the event was to facilitate a discussion between service providers in the public and third sector, and asylum seekers and refugees in order to hear from the refugees first-hand about their circumstances and needs and link them with suitable services.

The event opened with a performance from the school’s pupils, followed by a speech from ELREC’ Chair, Foysol Choudhury MBE, who also introduced the other speakers of the evening: the Rt. Hon. Donald Wilson, The Lord Provost of Edinburgh, Jodie Hannan (Headteacher at Drummond Community High School), Dr. Elisabetta Spano (ELREC’s Project Lead Officer), Michael Russell MSP (Minister for UK Negotiations on Scotland’s Place in Europe), Ben Macpherson (MSP for Leith and Edinburgh North), Cllrs Cameron Rose and Nick Gardner, Dr. Wali Tasar Uddin MBE and Shami Khan DL (ELREC Vice-Chair). Two refugees also spoke, telling the public about their plight as refugees and the difficulties in accessing services.

The event was successful, with a high turn-out and many stalls from different service providers. The Chair of ELREC, Foysol Choudhury MBE, said “When the refugee crisis became apparent, we at ELREC felt the need and duty of having to do something, as we work to promote equality and social justice. We then decided to create an event that wanted to be one of many initiatives that we aim to organise in support of refugees in the near future”. During his speech at the event, the Minister for UK Negotiation on Scotland’s Place in Europe Michael Russell MSP stated: “Scotland has a long history of welcoming people from all over the world, including those seeking refuge from war and terror.  We all have a part to play in making these refugees welcome in our country and in demonstrating understanding, compassion and acceptance. Community groups and organisations like ELREC and Drummond Community High School are playing an important role in showing their support for refugees, ensuring they feel welcomed and their contribution to society is valued.”

Refugees who attended the event came from a wide range of countries, such as Syria, Iran, Egypt and China. All had the opportunity to discuss their situation and the services available to them with organisations that work in areas of employment, immigration, legal advice, health, education, language support, women and families support. 


First Minister, Nicola Sturgeon, announced on 20 February 2017 the award of £9.97 million for 113 community-led projects in the 23rd round of grants from the Scottish Government’s Climate Challenge Fund.

ELREC was awarded £108,687 from Keep Scotland Beautiful Climate Challenge Fund to run the Communities for Conservation Project.

Ethnic minority communities take action on Climate Change.

Communities For Conservation is a project run by Edinburgh and Lothians Regional Equality Council (ELREC) to empower ethnic minority communities in Edinburgh and Livingston in initiatives related to energy saving, cycling and food growing. Project activities include home energy advice visits to help householders reduce energy use, carbon emissions and move out of fuel poverty. The project will also offer bikeability classes, food growing workshops and events to mainstream the topic of climate change.

Congratulation to the ELREC board, staff, volunteers and partners and everyone who took part in the #communitiesforconservation project.

“The First Minister said:

“Scotland is making huge progress in delivering our climate change ambitions, but there is still much to achieve and the role of behaviour change and community action is crucial.

“The Climate Challenge Fund supports community projects that inspire people to care about the problem of climate change, consider what it might mean to them in terms of their everyday lives and enable them to take action.

“R:evolve Recycle is an excellent example of this approach. They work with people spanning the whole community – from school children to elderly community residents.”

We have managed the Climate Challenge Fund on behalf of the Scottish Government since the Fund was established in 2008 and provide support, resources and training to support grant recipients and other community groups taking action on climate change.

Derek Robertson, Chief Executive of Keep Scotland Beautiful commented:

“Climate change impacts all of us and we need collective action to tackle it, so we were delighted to have supported so many communities from across Scotland in preparing applications for the latest round of the Scottish Government’s Climate Challenge Fund.

“We congratulate all those community-led organisations awarded Climate Challenge Fund grants and look forward to working with them as they implement their projects.

“We have managed the Climate Challenge Fund on behalf of the Scottish Government since the Fund was established in 2008 and are committed to empowering many more communities across Scotland to take action on climate change. We see this as part of our work to make Scotland clean, green and more sustainable.”

In 2017/18 the Climate Challenge Fund totals £9.97 million and is a combination of £9.09 million from the Scottish Government and £0.88 million from the European Regional Development Fund.

Iain Gulland, Chief Executive of Zero Waste Scotland said:

“Scotland’s ambitions for a circular economy, where we make things last for longer, go hand-in-hand with its world-leading commitments to tackling climate change. Thanks to extra investment from the European Regional Development Fund we’re now able to help more communities across Scotland take action locally to benefit Scotland’s environment.

“We look forward to working with the successful organisations to make a real difference to their communities.”

You can view a full list of CCF grant recipients for 2017/18 on the Scottish Government’s website. The projects will commence their activities on 1 April 2017.”

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