POLICE and Crime Commissioner Martin Surl has invested more than three quarters of a million pounds to make Gloucestershire a better place to live and work.

Grants totalling £802,325 were awarded to 45 local organisations in his first year in office to reduce crime and create more peace and good order in their communities.

Now the search is about to begin again to find more projects worthy of funding.

“Solutions to local problems usually work best when they come from the people who know their communities best and I am confident we can build on some of last year's success stories”, said Mr Surl.

“Some of the schemes like the Door Youth Project in Stroud and GymNation in Gloucester are helping young people make the difficult transition into adulthood.

"Pathfinders is preparing our would-be young drivers for the roads and helping to keep them safe and Keepsafe, which continues to grow right around the county, is helping those who are older and more vulnerable feel more secure.

“I have also been able to support schemes that will help the fight against gangs, alcohol and drug dependency and the impact all of those issues have on crime.”

Community groups and organisations are invited to bid for a share of the Commissioner's Fund to develop crime reduction and community safety work.

The fund is the part of the budget that is set aside to fund community safety initiatives in line with the priorities set out in the Police and Crime Plan.

“The aim of the fund is to build a safer, healthier and more just and inclusive Gloucestershire with a better quality of life for all”, said commissioning officer Kirsten Fruin.

“There are a number of things which make it unique.

"Firstly it aims to reduce crime and disorder, it aims to make communities stronger and safer, it is targeted on a particular geographical area, community or theme, it encourages co-operation with partners and communities and it aims to bring sustainable benefits to communities.

“Community safety is not just about policing. It’s about everyone taking responsibility and playing their part in making their neighbourhood as good as it can be.”

To request an application form email Kirsten Fruin at kirsten.fruin@gloucestershire.pnn.police.uk