Charities and voluntary organisations are encouraged to apply for funding from the High Sheriff of Essex awards scheme.

Grants of up to £5,000 are available from the High Sheriffs’ Fund, which is managed by Essex Community Foundation (ECF).

Money will be awarded to groups which are working to make communities safer and better places to live.

Previous grants have included a handyman service for housebound and vulnerable people living in Epping, construction skills training in Chelmsford for disadvantaged teenagers and a mentoring programme in Clacton for boys who do not have a positive male role model in their lives.

Bryan Burrough, High Sheriff of Essex said: “I have had the privilege of visiting some amazing organisations that are doing great work and I am sure there are many more groups working in local communities.

"I would encourage them to apply to ECF for a grant as the High Sheriffs Awards provide a wonderful opportunity to thank them for the work they are doing and to sing their praises.”

Since it came under ECF’s management in 1997, the High Sheriff’s Fund has awarded 600 grants totalling nearly £500,000.

An independent panel of judges, chaired by the High Sheriff and including past High Sheriffs, will review applications and the awards will be presented by the High Sheriff at a ceremony to be held at Hylands House in March.

The deadline date for applications is December 1.

To apply, visit