If you and your neighbours or community group have a great idea to improve your community, the City of Waterloo wants to hear from you, and will even match your contribution.

Through the recently approved Neighbourhood Matching Program, residents can apply for up to $2,000 to help community projects. For example, if you want to create a community garden, the city will match your contribution. The examples don’t end at gardens, “It’s about what the community wants, and what they feel would work best in their neighbourhood.”

Waterloo’s Coordinator of Neighbourhoods and Community Groups, Kristy Prior told 570 News the funds are designed to help either existing neighbourhood associations, or less organized groups of neighbours, “it’s really to support some grass-roots projects within Waterloo…. that will build an inclusive community or help fill a community need.”

The Neighbourhood Matching Program was brought forward by the Safe & Healthy Community Advisory Committee. Council has set aside $10,000 for the next three years to be awarded over 2012 through 2014. The deadline to apply for a project is June 28th. Waterloo expects to award the funds for the first round of projects in July.

There are a number of ways to apply. First, on the City of Waterloo website. Secondly, you can ask for an application email NeighbourhoodMatchingFunds@Waterloo.ca. Third, forms are available to be picked up in person, from either the Waterloo Memorial Recreation Complex or in the Community Culture and Recreation Service department at Waterloo City Hall.

For more information, to have questions answered, or to meet the committee that put forward this initiative, an open house is being held June 14th from 6:30 to 7:30 at the Waterloo Memorial Recreation Complex.