The Nine Lives Community Fund awarded a grant of £3,400 to the East Manchester Community Boat Project based in Portland Basin, Ashton under Lyne.
This project revolves around a 12 seat narrowboat, called Community Spirit, that provides education and fun-based activities for adults and children, from across Greater Manchester, who are disabled or disadvantaged.
On average approximately 850 people enjoy a free day out on the canal boat each year and all visitors are encouraged to participate in the crewing of the boat, with supervision. They are also able to enjoy learning more about local history, the local environment and wildlife and life on the canal.
The project needed to update both its safety equipment and its technical equipment to provide educational activities and to meet the required safety standards.
Nine Lives Community Fund provided a grant towards a loop system to help the hard of hearing, laptop, screens, new life jackets, navigation lights and other essenetial items to make the project viable.
Representatives from 9 St. John Street visited the project in August 2011 and were able to learn about the work of the project and see the seat for disabled visitors that had been sponsored as part of their grant.
They also learned about the work of the project and the benefits it bring to those who enjoy its facilities. It provides a total change of scene for people who would probably never have the opportunity to experience a trip on the water in an urban and country environment whilst at the same time learning new skills, have some fun and understand the work of a canal and how it helped their area be a part of the Industrial Revolution.