Birmingham and Solihull integrated care board (ICB) has launched a grant scheme worth £200,000 to assist its community partners in tackling health inequalities.
The community-based projects will be able to bid for up to £10,000 each to support their work intended to improve health and care for groups with typically poorer outcomes.
The projects are expected to cover projects supporting new migrants, refugees and asylum seekers, LGBTQ+ people, people with autism and learning disabilities, and people experiencing racial disparity.
The ICB commissioned its local volunteer service, Birmingham Voluntary Service Council (BVSC), and Birmingham Place committee to run the scheme as part of its health inequalities initiative, the Fairer Futures Fund.
Paul Athey, chief finance officer for the ICB and executive lead on the Fairer Futures Fund, said: ‘The Fairer Futures Fund is an £18 million programme which will provide investment into individual, patient, community and clinically-led innovation across health and care in Birmingham and Solihull.
‘We have launched the small grants scheme first as we know this is where we can make a meaningful impact quickly in communities or groups where it is needed most.
‘Starting small will also provide valuable feedback on how the main funding is allocated and how we might scale up and adopt smaller projects across Birmingham and Solihull to bring a wider benefit.’
Stephanie Bloxham, head of health and social care for BVSC, said: ‘This is a great opportunity for bidding organisations to think creatively and collaboratively about how they can make a real difference to the health and care of our most vulnerable citizens. Ideas could be simple or complex, big or small – it could be anything from purchasing kit and equipment for an exercise class through to helping establish a community group.’