Community Accelerator Project launched

Regen Sw are delighted to announce the launch of the Community Accelerator project which will help speed up community projects to generate, own and save energy.
 
We are looking for 30 community energy groups who want to engage the whole community and who need technical expertise to find the most appropriate sites and renewable technologies. To take part you need to join our communities network so that even if your group is not selected for tailored support, you will still be invited to lots of events and training, and be able to access the tools that will be created for the Community Accelerator project.
 
The project will enable community energy groups to better engage the whole community and increase the number of people in the core group. This helps maintain momentum by drawing in skills from as many people as possible, along with support from local authorities and businesses. The project will help community groups look at their energy use, the renewables resource locally, and find the most appropriate technologies and sites.
 
How do I join this project? 
Step 1: Register your group and join over 200 in the Regen Community Energy Group Network www.regensw.co.uk/communities
Step 2: Email Jodie jgiles@regensw.co.uk to let us know you are interested, (you need to do this even if you are already part of the Regen Community Energy Group Network)
Step 3: We will contact you soon for more information!
 
What support is there if we are selected?
  • Creative Community Engagement – support to write a community engagement strategy, events support, tools, templates and kit to borrow.
  • Technical support – for GIS mapping, data, or research to assess potential projects.
  • Networking and tailored support to build relationships with local authorities and businesses. 
  • Monitoring and evaluations tools and support.
  • Training and events which will also be open to the whole Regen Communities Network.
Is there funding available? 
Community groups in Devon who apply will also be eligible for up to £5,000 grant funding each. This money can be used to pay for start-up assistance from legal fees to community engagement and lots in between.
 
This project is funded for 3 years by the Esmee Fairbairn Foundation with additional funding for Devon communities from Devon County Council. This is a national project and we will support communities outside of Devon to access funding.
 
Regen’s chief executive Merlin Hyman said: “Community energy has huge potential as an enabler for communities to generate sustainable income and local jobs. Communities such as Bath, Wadebridge and Plymouth have shown what can be achieved – now we want to support the aspirations of all those who have been inspired by these trailblazers”.
 
Lizzy-Jane Frankel from Wadebridge Renewable Energy Network said: “Community energy projects can help energise and bring together communities.  Finding creative ways to enable everyone to engage in the issues builds and sustains community energy initiatives, and can have real impact on the way they are received and adopted”.
 
Devon County Councillor Roger Croad, Cabinet Member for Community and Environmental Services sad: “We know that over £300m and £400m is spent on energy in the north and south of Devon respectively, all of which disappears out of the local economy. Continuing our support to community energy groups will help build firm foundations for communities to work together to generate their own energy.”