Barking Riverside, Scrattons Farm and Thames View

News for residents, by residents

Grounded is awarded BD Giving’s GROW Fund

My name is Dana McWilson. I live in Dagenham and work in Barking Riverside in a coffee shop called Grounded Co-operative. I got involved with Grounded through a charity called Everyone Everyday and was trained for six weeks alongside six of my co-workers. I wanted to get involved in the project because I wanted to learn a new skill and the opportunity came at just the right time as I was looking for a job too. Covid and all the lockdowns meant I had more than enough time on my hands and I wanted to meet new people on a daily basis.

We were originally being funded by Barking Riverside Limited (BRL), the estate’s developer, but now we have been awarded £25k as a business from BD Giving, specifically from the GROW Fund. We decided to apply for the GROW fund to help us grow our business financially. Those who are successful in their application for this fund also receive eight months of training on how best to grow their business strategically, filling in any knowledge gaps that there might be.

There was an application form that we had to fill in and submit. It was something my colleagues and I were new to, but BD Giving had many opportunities to help with applications through online forums and they were very responsive via email so we felt supported during the application process. There was a panel of residents from the area who went through each of the applications and out of 100 applications from all over the borough, only eight were to be successful.

We were then sent an email letting us know that we were successful! It was great to know we weren’t going to just be relying on one source for our funding, but also we were going to get more training as most of us have never run a business from scratch before.

We’ve just started the training sessions and are going well so far. There’s lots of new information that really helps us see how we can get Grounded to grow as a business.


By Dana McWilson, local resident
Autumn 2023 Issue

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