Home Manufacturing & Industry Venator launches North East Bright Ideas Fund

Venator launches North East Bright Ideas Fund

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Venator associates with students from Middlesbrough College © Gary Walsh

Teesside based global manufacturing company Venator has launched a £10,000 Bright Ideas Fund to inspire innovation and stimulate learning in STEM subjects across the North East region.

The Bright Ideas Fund will give 40 grants of £250 to groups and organisations that encourage innovative ideas within science, engineering, technology and maths.

The fund is now open for applications from schools, colleges, clubs, charities and other groups that could benefit from a financial boost to pay for resources such as safety equipment, outreach services or an educational day out.

Applications are now being accepted for the Bright Ideas Fund, and will run until midnight on 31 March 2019. To apply, visit the Venator Community Fund website and submit 250 words about how your group or organisation would use the £250 grant to promote STEM based activities. All successful projects will go head-to-head in a month long online public vote opening on 5 April 2019, with the 40 most voted-for applicants each receiving £250.

All proposed projects must benefit communities in the North East of England within the local authority boroughs of Darlington, Durham, Gateshead, Hambleton, Hartlepool, Middlesbrough, Newcastle, North Tyneside, Northumberland, Redcar & Cleveland, South Tyneside, Stockton and Sunderland.

Karen Fenwick, Vice President Corporate Branding and Communications at Venator, said: “Innovation is at the very heart of what we do: making things possible through the creative application of bright ideas. That is why we want to reward groups and organisations dedicating their time and resources to support learning in science, technology, engineering and maths.

“We are delighted to launch the Bright Ideas Fund to encourage STEM learning across the North East.”

Inspire2Learn is a teaching and learning centre funded by schools in Redcar and Cleveland and the revenue it generates. The centre runs courses and events specifically in response to local school needs with a particular mission to bring national speakers and events to a local audience to inspire STEM learning.

Andrew Stogdale, Manager at Inspire2Learn, said: “STEM subjects are fundamental to many of the industries and businesses in the North East that our young people will be aiming for careers in. Simply passing exams does not necessarily promote a love of STEM subjects or develop the passionate attitude that we recognise and value in our local companies.

“Grants such as Venator’s Bright Ideas Fund will allow schools and other organisations to go that extra mile to promote STEM subjects in more engaging and relevant ways than they can ordinarily do. This is a fabulous opportunity to develop innovate projects that will have a real impact on long term awareness and engagement with STEM.”