£50,000 up for grabs through Comic Relief (video)
COMIC Relief funding has helped to change hundreds of lives in Hull during the 25 years since Red Nose Day began.
Now, the Mail has once again teamed up with the charity to give away £50,000 in grants to community projects and charities in the area.
Fit Mums and Friends, which holds weekly walking and running sessions in Cottingham, is one of a number of causes helped by Comic Relief.
Working mum Sam Barlow is the brains behind the project, which has grown in the past three years.
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She began to miss contact with other parents and put out a note for people to join her for a run the following week.
To her amazement, four mums went along and now almost 300 parents meet up to keep fit together and socialise.
Sam said: "The group is now attracting runners from across the city.
"We cater for all levels of fitness. It's as much about social contact as it is about stamina and other groups have now sprung up across Hull."
The biggest one remains in Cottingham and between 50 and 70 parents turn up every Wednesday evening at the village's pavilion.
A grant of £1,000 from Comic Relief helped fund a specialist course for members who suffer from post-natal depression (PND) and baby blues.
It has so far trained four volunteer runners from the main group to become support workers. They have helped women with PND to integrate and engage in a sporting activity.
Sam said early feedback has been "very positive" and more women are ready to be helped.
"It's an area of need we identified within our members," Sam said.
"The plan is to help more mums who feel isolated by PND.
"Comic Relief funding has really helped us. The women don't have to have a diagnosis, if they are feeling down and need to get out of the house we help them take those first steps."
Paula Farrar, 36, of north Hull, has been helped by the funding after joining up two weeks after giving birth to her second child.
She said: "I suffered after my first child so I wanted to get involved straight away.
"It's the best thing I've ever done and I recently completed a ten-mile race."
Comic Relief has also given aid to a number of other causes in the past year through the Community Cash scheme.
They include Hull Dockers' Life- Saving Club, Pet Respect, Bransholme Chair Exercise Group and Inspiring Communities.
Projects can apply for grants of between £500 and £1,000 and must be based in the Hull and East Riding area.
They must be small groups with an income of less than £100,000 in the past year and be run by local people.
Projects to be awarded cash can be anything from parent and toddler groups to youth organisations.
The Two Ridings Community Foundation will make sure the money reaches those who need it most.
Sue Wicks, UK grants manager for Comic Relief, said staff are "delighted" to be working with the Mail and offering Red Nose Day Community Cash once again to groups in the area.
She said: "I urge as many groups as possible to get their applications in now for their chance to get a grant from the £50,000 on offer."
Visit www.trcf.org.uk/rednoseday to apply for a Community Cash grant.
• Red Nose Day is on Friday, March 15, and everyone in Hull is being asked to "do something funny for money".
The cash people raise for Comic Relief will transform lives in East Yorkshire, across the rest of the UK and in Africa.
People are also urged to wear their red nose with pride after more than £3.8m was spent last year on 270 projects across Yorkshire and Lincolnshire.
The Mail's editor, Neil Hodgkinson, said: "We are delighted to be able to champion the cause of charities and community groups. This is what Comic Relief is about – helping those who help others.
"These organisations work tremendously hard but the selfless efforts of the individuals involved all too often go unheralded.
"They can also struggle for funds. This money can help in a big way."
Visit rednoseday.com for more about donating and getting involved.