Matthew Scott keen to support projects which tackle social injustice
Matthew Scott is inviting organisations to access cash from his Safer in Kent Fund, hoping to attract bids from projects which tackle the causes of social injustice.
Speaking at a Homelessness Conference in Maidstone on World Homeless Day – also World Mental Health Day – he said:
Mr Scott told the Conference he hoped organisations, including charities and councils, would apply to access funding through his Safer in Kent Fund to help other vulnerable people.
‘As Police and Crime Commissioner, I’m keen to do all I can to help vulnerable people get the right support. People sleeping rough can be victims of crime too.
‘One of the stories that really impacted upon me, and confirmed my commitment to using my position as PCC not only to deliver policing and community safety in Kent but also to stand against social injustice, involved a young man I met when visiting a local homeless charity.
‘He was very upset and distressed because all his stuff had been stolen from the graveyard he was sleeping rough in. A week later I was pleased to hear he’d been referred into an alcohol and drug misuse programme that would help him.
‘I met him again two months later. He was still sleeping rough and he still hadn’t accessed the substance misuse programme because there was a waiting list. He was looking forward to starting the programme, but sadly he never got there. A week later he died in a tent in the graveyard.
‘That was a life wasted. I wondered what more I could do, and what more the authorities could have done, to help him get his life back on track?’
The PCC added:
Up to £10,000 is available for projects which cover one town or district, increasing to £20,000 for projects which cover a larger area - for example two district council areas. Projects must support the delivery of the PCC’s Safer in Kent Plan, such as by reducing criminality or reducing the number of victims of crime.
‘I set up the Safer in Kent Fund in April to tackle crime, reduce re-offending and prevent antisocial behaviour through diversionary projects. I want to hear about bids from projects which tackle some the causes of social injustice that people face.’
Full terms of funding and a Safer in Kent Fund application form are available from the OPCC website.