NI groups win £150,000 in The People’s Projects

23 Apr 2019 02:01 PM

Adam’s Camp NI, Ards Peninsula First Responders Scheme and Newry Helping the Homeless have won the public over with their plans to make a life changing difference to their local communities.

Five projects campaigned across Northern Ireland from 1-15 April for a share of £150,000. Each had their work featured on UTV, The Daily Mirror and Belfast Live, giving the public a chance to see their fantastic work and then make the tough choice of where the money should go.

After being chosen by voters from across Northern Ireland, the three groups are now using this new funding to continue their work to bring people together, strengthen their communities and make a difference to people’s lives.

The Adam’s Autism Adventures project by Adam’s Camp NI won £50,000. They are providing several week-long camps including therapies and adventures for children with Autism Spectrum Disorder and their families, from across Northern Ireland.

Through intensive therapy the children learn skills such as how to regulate their emotions, improve mental health, develop independence and make friends in a fun camp experience. Activities include six hours of therapy each day, a programme for siblings, respite and parents’ workshops.

Grainne Ashe, executive director of Adam’s Camp NI recently said:

“It’s amazing to win this £50,000. I want to thank everyone who took the time to vote for us and get behind our project - it means so much to us and it’s going to be life changing for many families who have children with autism.”

The Hand on Heart project by Ards Peninsula First Responders Scheme, has been awarded £50,000. The group works with the Northern Ireland Ambulance Service to respond to emergency calls in the rural Ards Peninsula area. Responders live and work in the community so can get to casualties quickly, providing life-saving care until the ambulance arrives.

The project is strengthening their volunteer base by recruiting and training ten more responders and buying equipment so each responder can deliver emergency care quickly.

Jamie Nicolls, assistant co-ordinator of Ards Peninsula First Responders recently said: 

“Thank you so much to everyone who voted for us and to our volunteers who were fantastic at rallying support for our project. We’re so grateful to be one of the winners and with this funding we can now increase our responder base and hopefully save more lives.”

The Hope Thru Soap project by Newry Helping the Homelessalso received £50,000. The group are providing a mobile shower unit for homeless people in Newry and Belfast to have a hot shower in a private space.

They are also providing food, clothes, haircuts and medical check-ups with help from trained volunteers, which include medical professionals. The project will improve hygiene and wellbeing for homeless people, raise awareness of homelessness in the community and attract new volunteers.

Tommy Jones, chairperson of Newry Helping the Homeless said:“This was a dream of ours from the start and now it’s a reality thanks to The People’s Projects. We can now buy a mobile shower unit which will make a massive difference to a lot of homeless people. Thanks to all our volunteers for helping throughout the campaign and thanks to everyone who voted.”

The two runners up — H.O.P.E for Communities by Equine Enrichment and MERGE by Drake Music Project NI — are set to receive £5,000 for smaller projects.

The People’s Projects is a partnership between The National Lottery Community Fund, ITV and The National Lottery. Since 2005 it has given the public a unique say in how National Lottery money should be put to good use in their local area.

Kate Beggs, The National Lottery Community Fund Northern Ireland Director, recently said:

“The People’s Projects highlights the fantastic things communities are doing across Northern Ireland to enable people to thrive.

“All five groups did a brilliant job at showcasing their projects, building community spirit and campaigning for votes.

“Congratulations to everyone and we’re looking forward to seeing this year’s winners use National Lottery funding to strengthen their communities and support people to lead happier and healthier lives.”

The People’s Projects has awarded around £45 million to over 1,000 good causes across the UK since it started in 2005.



Northern Ireland

Notes to Editors

About The National Lottery Community Fund and The People’s Projects

The National Lottery Community Fund

We are the largest community funder in the UK – we’re proud to award money raised by National Lottery players to communities across England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. Since June 2004, we have made over 200,000 grants and awarded over £9 billion to projects that have benefited millions of people.

We are passionate about funding great ideas that matter to communities and make a difference to people’s lives. At the heart of everything we do is the belief that when people are in the lead, communities thrive. Thanks to the support of National Lottery players, our funding is open to everyone. We’re privileged to be able to work with the smallest of local groups right up to UK-wide charities, enabling people and communities to bring their ambitions to life.

Website │Twitter │Facebook │Instagram

The People’s Projects

A UK-wide public vote, which gives National Lottery players and the public a say in where National Lottery funding goes. It is a chance for organisations across the UK to receive further National Lottery funding.

Read more about this programme