County Antrim groups kick start the new decade with a £77,000 grants boost from the National Lottery

Dunclug Primary School has received a boost.

COMMUNITY groups and institutions across Northern Ireland including in County Antrim are celebrating an exciting start to the new year after being awarded £3.7million of grants from The National Lottery Community Fund.

Ulster Speleological Society and Caving Club is among those groups in County Antrim sharing more than £77,000.

The group based in Randalstown is using a grant of £5,100 to purchase a wide range of caving equipment including helmets, helmet torches, ropes and oversuits.

The aim of the project is to promote a healthy and active lifestyle, expand the club’s membership and encourage members of the public to get involved.

Ballymena Substance Users Support Group is using a £8,140 grant to deliver a programme of support to people affected by substance dependency.

Activities include motivational speakers, music therapy, educational away days and presentations by the community pharmacist.

Carrick Connect is using a £10,000 grant to run the Carrick Connect Project Mentorship in Carrickfergus.

The group are using the funding to deliver more mentorship hours to young people aged 11-24 and provide safe, confidential support to those experiencing emotional difficulties in their lives and are unable to access support.

They are also using the money to run digital arts classes in a mobile cart positioned in various areas in Carrickfergus.

The Bridge Association, based in Antrim, provides vocational training for adults with learning disabilities.

The group are using a £10,000 grant to provide training for its members, to increase their health, well-being and education opportunities.

The money is also being used to provide development opportunities to staff, fund day trips and resources for the office.

Dunclug Primary School in Ballymena, is using a £10,000 grant to purchase an outdoor classroom/sensory room.

The RecoBox is equipped with a range of sensory resources and equipment to serve the pupils who attend the school and children throughout the north Ballymena community.

Gloonan House Tenant’s Social Committee in Ahoghill is using a £4,200 grant to organise a health and well-being event, theatre trip, summer day trips and physical activity classes for residents of Gloonan House and other people living in local sheltered accommodation.

These activities help people create friendships, learn about services and improve mobility and posture.

Also receiving funding are Young Temperance True Blues Orange Lodge, Children’s Law Centre, Ballykeel Together Development Association and Ballyrobert Recreation Club.

Kate Beggs, The National Lottery Community Fund Northern Ireland Director, said: “What a fantastic way to start the new year by announcing these grants which are helping fund amazing projects throughout Northern Ireland. It is great to see the diverse work being done through projects funded by National Lottery money.

“Whether it’s small pots of funding or larger grants, people are being brought together to make good things happen and change lives. When people take the lead and develop their own great ideas, communities really do thrive. I want to say thanks to all the National Lottery players who have helped make this possible.”

For a full list of grants awarded across Northern Ireland visit:

For more information on applying for National Lottery funding, please visit the website If you have an idea you would like to discuss or need guidance please call them on 028 9055 1455 or email

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