A PROJECT is sharing more than £2,500 with community groups that need it the most.

The Kirkby Fruit Project, which started in 2012, is donating up to £500 of their profits to several voluntary organisations within a seven-mile radius of Kirkbymoorside.

Each year, the group save tonnes of fruit from going to waste by juicing and selling pasteurised cordial and cider.

The project is run entirely by volunteers, with profits supporting community activities, the purchase of new equipment or local campaigns.

“Covid-19 did affect our productivity last year, but we managed enough socially distanced juicing to keep our outlets well-stocked,” said Chris Simmonds, a volunteer at Kirkby Fruit Project.

“As a result, we have around £2,500 profits to share with local groups.

“The available money for community groups was largely raised prior to the start of the pandemic and the first lockdown.

“Our accounting year runs from September to the end of August then after accounts are finalised, we normally distribute excess funds in November or December.

“Last November, the country was heading into the second lockdown, so community groups had all their activities and plans on hold.

“We as a group decided that it would be better to wait until lockdown started to ease and community groups were able to start planning for the future before releasing the funds.

“The distribution was therefore delayed to March.”

To qualify for a donation, you need to be either a voluntary or community group within a seven-mile radius of Kirkbymoorside.

Groups can download the application form, detail a specific purchase, how much it will cost and how it will benefit the community.

Unsuccessful bids can be carried forward to the following year and all groups may apply each year, irrespective of whether they have previously received a donation.

“As with most other community groups, our activities and ability to generate funds have been severely restricted over the past year though we did manage to run a scaled back juicing service last autumn,” added Chris.

“Hopefully as restrictions now begin to ease, we will be able to get back to some kind of normality and look to the future.”

Applications need to be emailed to Kirkbyfruit@gmail.com by April 19.

To apply, visit https://kirkbyfruitproject.com/community-group-donation-request-2016