Drop-in centre gets cash boost

Here4U help centre at Albert Parade Old Town by Cllr Janet Coles.  February 16th 2013 E08013P

Here4U help centre at Albert Parade Old Town by Cllr Janet Coles. February 16th 2013 E08013P

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Thirteen Sussex charities and community groups have been awarded grants under the Sussex Police Community Cashback initiative, launched earlier this year in partnership with Sussex Community Foundation.

Community Cashback offered £50,000 cash seized under the Proceeds of Crime Act during 2012/13 to local community groups and charities.

Using the proceeds of Crime Act, Sussex Police has secured court orders to confiscate houses, cars, cash and other assets from convicted criminals when they have found to be fruits of criminal activity.

More than 74 local charities and community groups from across the county, working to reduce crime, the fear of crime and/or antisocial behaviour, made applications for grants of up to £10,000 to support their work.

Here4U in Albert Parade, Old Town, was one of the successful groups and received £2,500 towards running costs.

It is a high street based drop-in centre for local people, addressing crisis needs, as well as the root causes of poverty through information, signposting, advice and advocacy.

“The response has been tremendous and wide-ranging and well in excess of our expectations,” said Detective Chief Inspector Ali Eaton, who has overall responsibility for the Financial Investigation Team, the police team responsible for securing court confiscation orders for criminals’ money.

“The fact this money has been taken from criminals and is going back into our local communities gives us great satisfaction.

“It has been a very humbling experience to see the extent of voluntary and community work being carried out across Sussex.”

Representatives from the local authorities, police, the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner, and a representative from Brewin Dolphin considered the applications in September.