A SPECIAL fund of more than £50,000 has been set up to help rural communities in Wrexham Borough and across North East Wales battle the coronavirus epidemic.

The cash is being administered by regeneration agency Cadwyn Clwyd, who are appealing to local organisations to come forward and share in funds worth up to £3,000 each.

It is aimed at helping develop new ways of providing local services, such as Meals on Wheels and other outreach programmes to help people in rural Wales, particularly the elderly and most vulnerable.

Cadwyn Clwyd operate through Local Action Groups (LAG) in each county.

Chairman of the Wrexham LAG, David Darlington, said the money would help organisations adapt to current conditions.

“This crisis is going to last for more than a couple of weeks and organisations need sustainable help and assistance," he said.

“The people on the ground have the knowledge of who is likely to need help and where that help needs to go to and this will help provide the resources for these local champions to deliver crucial and timely services.

“The cash will help community organisations to adapt to new ways of working and developing innovative solutions to providing services to their communities.”

The fund, worth £54,000 in total, is from a pot of almost £8 million of LEADER project funding which is being administered by Cadwyn Clwyd and from part of the Welsh Government Rural Communities-Rural Development Programme 2014-2020.

The money is funded by the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development (EAFRD) and the Welsh Government as part of a six-year plan to revitalise rural communities and their economies.

Cadwyn Clwyd manager, Lowri Owain, added: “These are very challenging times and that’s as true for the rural areas as for the towns across Denbighshire, Flintshire and Wrexham.

“This money is aimed at community groups, charities and public sector organisations which are at the frontline of the fight against the coronavirus epidemic.

“Many of them are having to seek new ways of delivering their services which is very challenging at this difficult time.

“The cash will be channelled to them through the LAG we have set up across the rural areas.

“We are already helping organisations across the three areas including, for example, the purchase of food containers for home deliveries.

“We are faced with a rapidly changing situation in the in the context of the outbreak and these funds will help adjust frontline community support.

“Local organisations can contact Cadwyn Clwyd and we will work with them with our officers helping them to claim the funds they need.

“We don’t want to take anyone away from the front line and tie them up with organisational matters and these grants can cover equipment and even with marketing costs for material to raise public awareness.”

To date, Cadwyn Clwyd has allocated more than £5 million on LEADER projects across Wrexham, as well as Denbighshire and Flintshire, liaising with LAGs who have the final say on funding.

For more information about Cadwyn Clwyd and to make enquiries about how to access financial support, call 01490 340500, email admin@cadwynclwyd.co.uk or visit cadwynclwyd.co.uk