From left: James Gagliardini, Community Engagement and Inclusion Programme Manager at Portsmouth City Council Andrew Cullen, Chief Executive, Portsmouth Foodball Club Cllr Chris Attwell, Cabinet Member for Communities and Central Services, Portsmouth City Council Duke Harrison-Hunter, Equality, Diversity & Inclusion Coordinator, Pompey In The Community

Portsmouth Football Club is the latest organisation to throw its weight behind the city’s Community Inclusion Grants scheme.

The programme has a £30,000 pot to allocate with voluntary and community groups able to bid for up to £1,000 to support their project, with applications closing on 30 October.

The club’s chief executive Andrew Cullen declared support for the Portsmouth City Council initiative following a meeting between the two organisations to see how they could support each other’s work in the area of equality, diversity and inclusion.

The Community Inclusion Grants are designed to support projects that aim to challenge inequality, advance equity and celebrate diversity in Portsmouth so could be suitable for any groups looking to attract a wider range of members, make their facilities more accessible or highlight unique aspects of a group or community.

Cullen said:

“We know more than anyone the support the people of Portsmouth can generate and what that can achieve. There are community groups across the city doing wonderful things, it’s great to hear the council is making this funding opportunity available to them and I hope as many as possible get involved.”

As well as the football club hearing about the grant scheme, Cllr Chris Attwell, the council’s Cabinet Member for Communities and Central Services, learned about Pompey’s ongoing work to improve access for disabled supporters at Fratton Park, as well as efforts to engage residents from all of Portsmouth’s communities such as providing tickets to Ukrainian refugees.

Cllr Attwell said:

“The work the football club is doing to encourage a more diverse range of fans into Fratton Park and give them a great experience is really fantastic. We know that most organisations in the city don’t have the resource that Pompey do but we also know that any funding can make a huge difference to them so that’s why we’re making these grants available to help people where they need it.”

Portsmouth Football Club’s backing of the council grants follows hot on the heels of support from both HIVE Portsmouth which coordinates and supports the voluntary, community and social enterprise sector in the city and specialist diversity and inclusion charity URBOND.

Anyone interested in more information on the Community Inclusion Grant scheme, visit the webpage, or email or call 023 9268 8404.