LOCAL charities are encouraged to apply for a chance of becoming Halton Housing Trust’s charity of the year.

The successful charity will receive regular practical business and financial support for 12 months.

Vikki Mack, who leads on the trust’s charitable work, said: “Since we started working with local charities in 2006, we’ve raised over £210,000.

“To become our chosen charity for 2014/15 is a fantastic opportunity and the successful organisation will benefit hugely from our fundraising efforts as well as the expertise and diverse range of skills of our colleagues.”

Charities need to demonstrate how their work benefits the Halton community and specifically the trust’s 14,000 customers.

A shortlist will be drawn up from those expressing an interest and the trust’s employees will vote for their preferred charity.

As the trust’s charity for the past 12 months, The Alzheimer’s Society has received more than £9,000 from donations and funding for the launch of a Singing for the Brain project in Halton.

Halton Haven Hospice and Norton Priory Museum and Gardens have also benefited from the trust’s support in recent years.

Nick Atkin, trust chief executive, said: “As a community based housing provider it makes sense for us to work with a locally based charity.

“We are keen to support local causes, even more so during these tough economic times “I’d encourage anyone interested in applying to read Our Direction on our website, as we’re keen to work alongside charities with a similar mindset.”

Interested charities should contact Vikki Mack on 0151 510 5106 or e-mail vikki.mack@haltonhousing.org and provide a short submission including why they should be selected.

This should also include a clear outline of any specific projects where the trust could support their work.

Another key selection criteria is how their aims and objectives match those of the trust’s and how the two organisations can work together to benefit the wider communities within Halton.

The deadline for submissions is February 28, 2014.