Bid for cash - Dragons' Den style!

VOLUNTARY organisations and community groups have just a few days left to apply for a grant - Dragons' Den style.

VOLUNTARY organisations and community groups have just a few days left to apply for a grant - Dragons' Den style.

Groups will be able to sell their 'Big Idea' to the judges' panel made up from NHS Suffolk, Ipswich Borough Council, Suffolk County Council and the Suffolk Mental Health Partnership Trust for a chance to get a �40,000 grant.

The event is being piloted in March but the deadline for completed forms is Friday, February 6.

The money will be awarded to the most innovative proposal or proposals for schemes to help local people improve their health.

Nadia Cenci, Ipswich Borough Council's portfolio-holder for the communities, said: “We want to raise a lot of interest and think the Dragons' Den approach will do this. Following an initial short-listing process we will invite organisations to present their 'Big Idea' to a panel of one-ipswich partners who will make a decision on funding the very same day.”

Graham Newman, Suffolk County Council's portfolio holder for adult and community services, said: “What we are looking for are some innovative ideas to make a real difference to local people and improve their health, well-being and quality of life.

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“By going for a Dragons' Den model we have the chance to speak face-to-face with the groups pitching their ideas but it also means there is a chance for partners or 'dragons' to invest further in the pilot if they want to.”

Organisations can download a form and information leaflet from, or further information is available from Tony Sewell on 01473 251834 or by e-mailing

In addition to this charities and voluntary and community groups in the town can also apply for small grants of up to �2,000 from the Ipswich Community Fund.

For an application form and to find out the funding criteria visit

Are you a charity with an event to highlight? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN, or e-mail

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