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Power to Change grant to help Marsh Farm Futures (MFF), Luton

August 2017


Marsh Farm Futures has been selected by Power to Change, under its Empowering Places Programme, to deliver activities focused on setting up community businesses. The agreed purpose of the grant is to:

- Identify and develop individuals/groups that have the potential to set up locally based community businesses.

- Develop good relationships with stakeholders and partners and to engage and build community capacity

- Engage actively in the Empowering Places Programme

Marsh Farm Futures (MFF), a registered charity established in 2010, is based at Futures House in Marsh Farm, North Luton. MFF facilitates the delivery of partner services, provides workspace for businesses and meeting halls for community groups and social events. MFF also operates Futures Fun Factory, an indoor children’s soft PlayPark.

The grant offer of £98,000 from Power to Change is timely as it will support MFF to develop one of its strategic objectives, to engage the local community, identify key issues with an aim to build a movement, and create a conducive environment where community business can flourish and transform places.

Power to Change is an independent trust, whose funding is used to strengthen community businesses across England. At a time when many parts of the UK face cuts, neglect and social problems, we are helping local people come together to take control, and make sure their local areas survive and stay vibrant.

Community business is run by and for the local community. It uses its profits to make the local area a better place to live, work and visit. Examples can include communities coming together to set up a local hub to provide a place to meet and work; developing a community laundrette or a project to help regenerate local area.

Ishaq Kazi, Programme Manager, responsible for the delivery of the project said:“I am delighted that Power to Change has selected us as one of the seven organisations in the country, to deliver Empowering Places Programme. This is clearly a resounding vote of confidence in our proposal made to Power to Change and recognition of our commitment to partnership working and engaging the local community. I am really looking forward to initiating and running the project”.

Marsh Farm Futures Chief Executive Mohammed Rafi commenting on this important initiative said:“Our vision for Empowering Places Programme includes harnessing innovation, developing clusters of activity and transforming services for the benefit of residents over the next five years. I am very pleased along with our Board of Trustees/Directors, to say we are all fully committed to this programme and are looking forward to working with residents, existing and new partners”.

Sian Herschel, Head of Place at the independent trust Power to Change, said:“We are really excited about teaming-up with Marsh Farm Futures, to help people in Luton come together and get great local ideas off the ground. It is an area full of potential and we can’t wait to get started”.

Marsh Farm Futures as part of the requirement, will hold consultation events with community groups, residents and partners to discuss and generate ideas on community business, recruit and train participants on entrepreneurial skills and work towards setting up community business that will trade in the market place.