KBC Bank calls for Bright Ideas to apply for €100,000 funding

3/2/15

KBC’s Bright Ideas fund returns for second year to reward creative community projects nationwide.

KBC Bank Ireland is calling on community groups around the country to apply for funding through its Bright Ideas initiative, a scheme that allows groups to secure funding for innovative projects in the community. A total fund of €100,000 is available for creative projects that can demonstrate tangible ways to transform, improve or rejuvenate any aspect of Irish community life.

Following a successful first year of the initiative, KBC’s Bright Ideas returns for a second year to reward unique community projects with multiple winners selected across the country. In addition this year, two winners from each of the regions will be selected by KBC’s judging panel to enter a public vote for Ireland’s ‘Brightest Idea’, with an additional €5,000 funding reserved for the overall winning project.

The return of Bright Ideas follows an overwhelming response from community groups and volunteers to the first year of the initiative, which was welcomed for helping to shine a light on the importance of community projects and for providing much-needed financial support to encourage local initiatives to thrive.

Last year 28 different community groups received funding that breathed new life into a diverse range of projects - from unique child development and progressive adult learning initiatives, to social inclusion activities for the elderly and quirky green energy projects.

One of last year’s winning projects delighted to secure funding was the Forget-Me-Nots, an inclusive choir in Dublin North-East for older people, family, friends, carers and neighbours, especially those affected by dementia and memory loss. Just one year after entering Bright Ideas, the choir has used the €4,000 funding it received to hire a dedicated choral director and develop new musical scores. The choir now prides itself on providing a regular social outlet for its members, their family and carers – with camaraderie, music and joy at the heart of this unique initiative for a better, more inclusive community.

Commenting on this year’s Bright Ideas initiative, Aidan Power, Head of Brand and Marketing, KBC Bank Ireland, said: “KBC developed Bright Ideas in recognition of local projects by local people working to transform their communities. As KBC expands and opens retail outlets in new locations around the country, we know that we too have a role to play in community life. Our Bright Ideas initiative is about helping to transform and improve local communities by providing much-needed funding and support for local projects that are truly innovative. We had a phenomenal response to Bright Ideas last year and I’m delighted that it’s back to help more community groups shine this year. As the Bank of You, we want to hear from people and organisations who are doing something different, creative and fresh to help their local community fulfil its potential and who have a clear idea of how KBC can help.”

Consistent with KBC’s emphasis on technology and innovation, applications for Bright Ideas funding can be submitted through the bank’s easy to use online application portal at   www.kbcbrightideas.com. Applications for 2015 open on 2 March and are welcome from projects based anywhere in the Republic of Ireland. The closing date for applications is 30th April 2015. 

To learn more about last year’s winners and how Bright Ideas has helped local community groups and their projects visit kbcbrightideas.com