Criminals’ cash given to good causes by Plymouth police

Plymouth community groups and charities have received a welcome New Year boost thanks to cash and assets seized from criminals.

Police in Plymouth have shared £2,750 from the Proceeds of Crime Act [POCA] fund among five deserving causes in the city.

Cash and assets gained through crime are confiscated from convicted offenders and given back to the community through the fund to help make a difference to people’s lives.

Grants are available to people whose projects improve life in the local community, make people feel safer or help to cut crime and antisocial behaviour. People can bid for grants through their local neighbourhood team.

Five city projects were awarded grants in the latest round of bids:

Devon and Cornwall Food Action were awarded £1,000 to help people and families who are struggling to find money for food and household essentials. The charity works with supermarkets, suppliers and wholesalers to redistribute surplus goods to needy people. The grant will help to buy fridges and assist with running costs.

The Ist Keyham [St Mark] Scout Group in Devonport successfully bid for £500 as part of its work to deliver new activities to young people at low cost. The group has around 130 members aged five to 18 who are given the chance to try out new activities such as kayaking, hikes, fencing and bush craft skills to improve their lives and teach them new skills.

Plymouth School of Creative Arts in Stonehouse were given £500 to buy appropriate wet weather gear and boots for students [pictured] undertaking their first Ten Tors challenge on Dartmoor this year.

A grant of £450 was awarded to Lipson Junior Hockey Club, run by community volunteers to provide training and coaching for children aged five to 14. The money has bought much needed goalkeeping kit for the under 10s and under 14s to enable them to safely take part in league games at Marjons University and training [pictured].

Plymouth Parkway’s U8s were given £300 to buy much-needed tracksuits/jackets for the boys’ football team training sessions and match days. The team is self-funded through the boys and their families who raise money for kits, pitch rentals and entry to tournaments.

Temporary Chief Superintendent Tamasine Matthews, commander for Plymouth Police, said: “We are delighted to support these very deserving groups and charities through this scheme which ensures cash gained from criminal enterprise goes back into the community where it belongs.

“The POCA grants give us the opportunity to benefit those who are striving to make the community a better place by developing initiatives which both support people in need, improve lives and makes city communities safer.”

To apply for a grant under the scheme please contact your local neighbourhood team via: https://www.devon-cornwall.police.uk/your-area/