DORSET charities can get a new cash boost from the Gannett Grant Foundation.

Charities have just over a week to get their entries in for this year’s Gannett Foundation Grant awards.

Last year thousands of pounds were handed out to local good causes by the Foundation, which is run by the charitable arm of the US media firm Gannett, owner of Newsquest media and publisher of the Dorset Echo.

Applicants must enter their submissions electronically by 5pm on Friday, September 21.

Last year local charities Weymouth Rowing Club, the Friends of the MV Freedom and Allsorts pre-school and clubs all received payments towards their ongoing good work.

And now charities are being urged to get their submissions in quickly to the Dorset Echo setting out how they would benefit from the grant.

The aims of the grant are to benefit a wide variety of people across the readership area and to give a lasting benefit to the community.

Last year Allsorts group for Weymouth youngsters, which runs pre-school, afterschool and holiday clubs across various Weymouth schools, received a £5,000 for new outdoor play equipment.

Weymouth Rowing Club was able to install floating pontoons thanks to an £8,000 grant and the MV Freedom got £1,290 to help towards new communications equipment.

Previous winners have also included Dorset Search and Rescue (DorSAR), Dorset Youth Association for their Routes cafe bar and waterside Weymouth Community Forum.

To simplify the process, this year all applications must be received in electronic form.

The Foundation will favour projects that demonstrate ‘good planning, oversight and financial responsibility’.

Charities should include copies of their most recent financial accounts and any supporting information and detail about the charity’s aims should also be included.

A spokesman for the Gannett Foundation said: “We support registered charities with projects which take a creative approach to the fundamental issues such as education and neighbourhood improvements, economic development, youth development, local problem-solving, assistance to disadvantaged or disabled people, environmental conservation and cultural enrichment.”

Applications will not be considered if they are from non-registered charities, intended to fund salaries or general running costs, general appeals as opposed to specific projects, political or regional organisations or state or privately owned schools – except special needs schools, or hospitals other than hospices.

Previous applicants who have been given a grant in the last two years will also not be considered.

Applications can be made by emailing and requesting an electronic form. The form can be saved, modified and then simply attached to an email and sent back.