Atlas Women’s Centre is feeling on top of the world following news it is to receive a funding windfall of almost £350,000 from the Big Lottery funded Space & Place programme.
The centre is one of thirteen groups across Northern Ireland receiving a share from a funding pot of £4.3 million.
The centre plans to use the grant to create an extension to the upper floor of its current Lisburn premises which will provide a new crèche, outdoor play area and sensory rooftop garden. A lift will also be installed allowing greater access to the building for the local community.
The money has been awarded by the Space & Place programme, a £15million Big Lottery funded capital grants programme which seeks to connect more people and communities together by making use of underused or difficult space.
Gay Sherry Bingham from Atlas Women’s Centre said: “We have won the lottery really; this project is going to make a difference to people’s lives, bring people together - young and old to learn and develop in a safe stimulating accessible environment. The community has wanted this for a long time. Christmas has come early to Lisburn and we now can’t wait for the project to commence.”
Michael Hughes Space & Place Co-Ordinator, said: “The Space & Place Consortium is delighted to be announcing this final round of Space & Place grants. We have seen from past experience that these grants make a hugely positive contribution towards transforming neglected or underused spaces in communities and also help tackle a diverse range of issues including social isolation and lack of facilities. This new space will help people in the community to come together on a more regular basis, allowing them to be better connected and will make a significant impact on building community cohesion in the area.
“We wish Atlas Women’s Centre and the local community every success with the project, and look forward to seeing the new facility.”