Coronavirus support for the voluntary and community sector

Grants and funding available for voluntary and community sector organisations.

National Lottery Community Fund

The National Lottery are prioritising funding projects and organisations supporting communities through the COVID-19 pandemic.

In England, they are focusing on funding organisations supporting people and communities who experience disproportionate challenge and difficulty as a result of the COVID-19 crisis. Organisations can apply for grants between £300 and £10,000 and for grants over £10,000.

Visit the National Lottery Website to apply.

Allen Lane Foundation

Grants are available to small registered charities, voluntary groups and charitable organisations in the UK for work that makes a difference to people’s lives as opposed to simply alleviating the symptoms or current problems and should aim to reduce isolation, stigma and discrimination.

Overall, the Foundation wishes to fund work which:

  • Will make a lasting difference to people’s lives rather than simply alleviating the symptoms of current problems.
  • Is aimed at reducing isolation, stigma and discrimination.
  • Encourages or enables unpopular groups to share in the life of the whole community.

One-off grants of between £500 and £15,000 are available (average grant size £5,000-£6,000). To be eligible, applicants must have an income of less than £100,000.

Visit the Allen Lane Foundation website to find out more.

Alpkit Foundation – Grassroots now

Grants of up to £500 are available for organisations serving those affected by coronavirus outbreak. Examples of eligible expenditure include being active in local communities to help elderly or vulnerable people, minimising the impact of self-isolation and support food banks.

Visit Alpkit website for more information.

Armed Forces Covenant Fund Trust – Force for Change Programme

Grants are available for local projects in the UK that support Armed Forces communities as they address the needs that have arisen as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.

The programme offers grant funding to charitable organisations, including community interest companies and local authorities, for local projects that support Armed Forces communities, particularly where they have been affected by the pandemic or where volunteer-run projects need some additional help. Grants of up to £20,000 are available for projects lasting up to a year.

Eligible projects must fall under one of two main themes:

  • Empowering Armed Forces communities to become more engaged in their local area.
  • Providing opportunities for isolated members of the Armed Forces community to take part in activities that improve general wellbeing.

Funding rounds are likely to reopen in 2021.Visit the Armed Forces Covenant Fund Trust website to find out more.

Arts Council England

The Arts Council invest in art and culture for a lasting return. They are looking for organisations, artists, events, initiatives and others to apply for funding, developing creativity. This includes:

  • National Lottery Project Grants- which provides open access programmes for arts, museums and library projects

Visit the Arts Council Website for further details on which grant funds are currently open.

ASDA Foundation

The ASDA Foundation's grants programmes aim to support grassroots charitable organisations working at the heart of its stores' communities. Registered charities, community groups, voluntary organisations and other not-for-profit organisations in the UK can apply for support with initiatives that will make a real long-term difference, benefiting the wider community.

Find out more through the Asda Foundation website.

Bailey Thomas Charitable Fund 

Grants are available to voluntary organisations and charities in the UK to assist with the care and relief of those affected by learning disabilities.

Applications will only be considered from voluntary organisations which are registered charities or are associated with a registered charity. Exempt charities such as schools, Parent Teacher Associations and Industrial & Provident Societies can also apply.

 The Charity operates the following grant schemes:

  • Small Grants: from £250 up to £10,000
  • General Grants: over £10,000

Small grant applications are accepted at any time. Please check the website for deadlines for submitting a General grant for over £10,000.

Visit the Bailey Thomas Charitable Fund website for more information. 

BBC Children in Need

Grants are available for not-for-profit organisations in the UK to improve the prospects of children and young people who face discrimination or disadvantage. Projects can apply for grants

The Main and Small Grants programmes are for not-for-profit organisations applying for grants of up to three years. The Main Grants programme provides funding over £10,000 and the Small Grants programme is for funding under £10,000.

Visit the BBC Children in Need website to apply.

BBC Children in Need -Emergency Essentials Programme

Grants are available to help families, or groups applying on their behalf, in the UK who are raising a disabled or seriously ill child or young person aged 17 years or younger.

The Trust will look at any grant request that relates to the needs of a disabled or seriously ill child, young person and their family.

The grants can be used for a wide range of essential items such as washing machines, sensory toys, family breaks, bedding, clothing and computers/tablets.

Find out more through the Family Fund Trust website.

BlueSpark Foundation

Grants are available for schools, community groups, clubs, societies or other organisations in England to improve the education and development of children and young people through educational, cultural, sporting and other activities. The Foundation aims to help children and young people reach their full potential.

Funding is at the discretion of the Trustees. Some grants awarded are under £2,000 and almost all are under £5,000.

Please see the BlueSpark Foundation website for more information on how to apply.

Boost Charitable Trust

Small grants are available to charities and non-profit making organisations with a focus on helping disabled and disadvantaged individuals in the UK to participate in sport.

The Trust aims to give opportunities to those who wish to fulfil their sporting ambitions, at any level, and provides grants to organisations that support disabled or disadvantaged people to overcome obstacles and take part in sporting activities in the UK.

Small grants of up to £750 are available. This is a rolling programme. Applications may be submitted at any time and there is no formal application form.

Please visit the Boost Charitable Trust website to find out more. 

British Muslim COVID-19 Fund

Grants are available for charities, organisations and voluntary groups in the UK impacted by the coronavirus pandemic. The aim of the fund is to support charities, voluntary groups and other organisations who are working to protect and assist vulnerable people during the pandemic.

Grants of £250 to £5,000 are available and are available to groups irrespective of faith. Please see the British Muslim COVID-19 Fund website for more information and how to apply.

City Bridge Trust

Grants are available to not-for-profit organisations that are working for the benefit of London inhabitants and which make London’s communities stronger, more resilient and thriving.

The scheme aims to benefit people living in Greater London by tackling social and financial inequality, leading to stronger, more resilient communities where local people have more access to facilities and more involvement in the way their communities are run.

Find out more about their grant schemes on the City Bridge Trust website.

Comic Relief Community Fund

The aim of this fund is to support local grassroots community organisations to respond to the needs of vulnerable individuals, families and communities. The fund is offering grants to organisations with an income of less than £250,000. Groups can apply if they meet one of Comic Relief’s four strategic themes:

  • Children Survive and Thrive -projects that support children under the age of 11 to reach their potential and have the best start in life
  • Fighting for Gender Justice - projects that improve equality for women, girls and initiatives that help people affected by domestic violence, abuse or exploitation due to their gender
  • A Safe Place to Be - projects that support people who are rebuilding their lives because of homelessness or forced migration
  • Mental Health Matters - projects that support good mental health in communities, improve access to support and tackle stigma and discrimination

Apply online through Groundwork UK website.

Drapers’ Charitable Fund

Grants are available for UK registered charities working to help improve the quality of life for people and their communities in Greater London by targeting the disadvantaged and socially excluded in the fields of social welfare; education and young people; and textiles and heritage.

Grants of up to £15,000 are normally awarded, but larger grants may be made. Charities must have a total income of less than £5 million per annum. The main focus of grant making is in areas of disadvantage areas of Greater London. Applications can be submitted at any time.

Find out more about the Draper’s Charitable Fund.

Edge Fund    

Grants are available for organisations taking action for a just, equitable and sustainable world; work that challenges abuses of power and aims to bring an end to the systems that cause injustice in the UK and the Republic of Ireland. The Edge Fund has launched a special Rapid Response Fund and is currently accepting applications from across the UK and Republic of Ireland.

Grants of £750 open to all groups that are working towards systemic change, and whose work is in line with Edge Fund's values. To be eligible, applicants should be:

  • A not-for-profit organisation.
  • Addressing issues facing a particular community (e.g. racism) to be led by that community (e.g. people of African and Asian heritage).
  • Small groups with a small annual income that struggle to get funding elsewhere. (To date, funding has not been awarded to any group with an annual income of more than £25,000; the average income of groups is around £2,500.)

Find out how to apply.

Groundwork

Groundwork is an environmental charity that administers grants on behalf of other funders. Find out more about the grant schemes that are specific to London on the London Grants webpage.

Help Musicians Coronavirus Hardship Fund

Up to £500 is available to professional working musicians to alleviate the immediate financial pressures incurred as a result of the coronavirus crisis.

Visit the Help Musicians website for more information.

Hope for the Young

Small grants to support young refugees and asylum seekers during the COVID-19 pandemic. Hope for the Young aim to support refugees, asylum-seekers, and undocumented young people to complete their education by providing grants of up to £4,500 to those who have no access to government funds, or to those who are facing extreme financial hardship.

They provide grants for:

  • Tuition fees
  • Exam fees
  • Transport costs
  • Living allowances

Find out more on the Hope for the Young website.

Lloyds Bank Foundation

Funding is available for any existing charitable partner of Lloyds Bank to help them get through this immediate coronavirus crisis. More information can be found on the Lloyds Bank Foundation website.

London Community Foundation

Grants are provided by the London Community Foundation’s private and public donors to support a wide variety of community projects in London. The London Community Foundation helps fund and support a huge range of activities that help to improve the lives of London’s most disadvantaged.

Child poverty, unemployment, isolation, homelessness, domestic violence and gang crime are just some of the issues the Foundation are tackling through its grant making.

Applications are typically accepted from constituted charities and community groups based in London. The Foundation specialises in funding smaller organisations that do not attract mass public support.

Applications open and close at different times. Applicants are advised to check the website for information on opening and closing dates.

London Housing Foundation

Grants are available for housing and social care organisations that work with homeless people or work to prevent people becoming homeless in London.

LHF will consider making grants in the following areas:

Proof of concept – to support ideas that are new and need testing. The funding is for small projects (up to £35,000 over 12-18 months) that test out whether an idea is scalable and can make a real difference. LHF is currently keen to explore issues to do with homelessness and migration and destitution, homelessness and the criminal justice system, and the impacts of homelessness on young people and vulnerable women.

Sector collaboration – support to help organisations explore the possibility of partnerships or mergers where they can be shown to improve outcomes for clients.

The normal maximum grant for proof of concept and early stage development applications is between £25,000 and £35,000. Applications may be made at any time.

Visit the London Housing Foundation website to apply.

Morrisons Foundation

The Morrisons Foundation awards grant funding for charity projects which make a positive difference in local communities. In the main grants are available to fully fund projects up to £25,000.

Visit Morrisons Foundation website for more information.

National Lottery Awards for All

Organisations can now apply for smaller amounts of funding between £300 and £10,000 provided they are COVID-19 related. Applications will be prioritised from:

Organisations supporting people who are at high risk from COVID-19

Organisations supporting communities most likely to face increased demand and challenges as a direct result of measures to prevent the result of COVID-19

Organisations with high potential to support communities with the direct and indirect impact of COVID-19

Visit the Community Fund website for more information.

Power to Change

Power to Change supports people to start and grow community businesses to revive local assets, protect the services people rely on, and address local needs.

Community businesses help make places better, for example by saving local shops, giving more training opportunities for local people or providing affordable housing. Power to Change can only fund and support community businesses.

Find out what funding is available on the Power to Change website.

Power to Change are also providing specific support during the COVID-19 pandemic, further information can be found on the Supporting the community business sector webpage.

Sport England

Coronavirus has hit the sport and physical activity sector hard, Sport England has modified their funding streams to help people safely return to play and are targeting the places that will have the biggest impact.

This includes helping sport and activity groups, clubs and organisations respond to the immediate challenges of returning to play in a coronavirus-safe way. There is funding to help local sports clubs and organisations adapt and open important places and spaces to help their local community return to play safely.

There are currently several funds available for groups to apply to:

  • Return to Play: Small Grants - £300 to £10,000
  • Return to Play: Community Asset Fund - £10,001 to £50,000
  • Return to Play: Active Together – up to £10,000
  • Tackling Inequalities Fund

 Visit Sport England for more information.

Strategic Legal Fund for Vulnerable Young Migrants

Grants are available to not-for-profit organisations in the UK that provide specialist level legal advice to vulnerable young migrants as well as to firms of solicitors that provide specialist level legal advice to vulnerable young migrants.

The maximum grant available is £30,000, though groups are encouraged to apply for lesser amounts. The average grant size is around £12,000.  Applications must be to find one of two kinds of strategic work:

  • The research and development of cases pre-litigation including: gathering evidence to test a hypothesis or research to establish authorities’ policy and practice, identifying potential plaintiffs/applications/appellants; researching whether to proceed; translating relevant material; and evaluating a litigation strategy
  • Third party “interventions” in existing cases, which allow a non-party intervener to assist the court in arriving in its decision in a case, acting as an amicus curiae, a friend of the court

The next application deadline is Thursday 25 February 2021. Find out more information on the Strategic Legal Fund website.

Sylvia Waddilove Foundation UK - COVID–19 Emergency Fund

Grants are available for small to medium sized not-for-profit organisations in the UK who are struggling to manage the financial impact of COVID-19 either because of increased demand for their services or from loss of income.

Charities, CICs and registered societies can apply.

The organisation must have an income less than £500,000, have free reserves below £100,000 and operate in one of the following areas:

  • Education relating to non-domestic animals
  • Visual and performing arts
  • Medical research
  • The relief of disability or severe illness
  • Accommodation of those in need

For more information about when the fund will reopen please check the website

Tesco Bags of Help

Grants are available to support a wide range of community groups, charities, schools and other not-for-profit organisations who are delivering projects that benefit the local community.

Learn more about the Tesco Bags of Help scheme.

The Yapp Charitable Trust

The Yapp Charitable Trust supports UK charities with a total annual expenditure of less than £40,000. Grant awards are normally for a maximum of £3,000 a year. Funding is available to enable charities to sustain their existing work, including grants for core costs and staffing.

Visit The Yapp Charitable Trust website for further information.

Theatre Reopening Fund 

Grants are available to help UK not-for-profit theatres to make coronavirus/COVID-19-related adaptions and prepare for reopening.

Grants of up to £5,000 are available. To be eligible, applicants must meet the following requirements:

  • Own or manage theatres with titles or signed leases of more than five years on buildings in England, Scotland, Wales or Northern Ireland.
  • Demonstrate that they run a regular theatre programme of professional, community and/or amateur work presenting no less than 30 performances a year.
  • Have a bona fide UK charitable or not-for-profit legal structure and be able to provide certified or audited accounts for at least two years.

Applications can be made at any time and will be assessed on a rolling basis. The Trust aims to make decisions on applications within four weeks.

Applicants are encouraged to get in touch with the Trust to discuss the project/work before applying. Following this initial discussion, applicants should complete the application form available to download from the Trust's website. This must be submitted by email.

Find out more about the fund and when it will reopen for applications.

True Colours Trust

Grants are available to UK registered charities and organisations with charitable status that are working to make a difference to the lives of disabled children and their families in the UK.

The True Colours Trust provides grants to help support families, children and young people in the UK with complex disabilities and/or life-limiting and life-threatening conditions. The Trust seeks to bring about better lives for children and their families through a broad mix of research, advocacy, service delivery and innovation.

Grants of up to £5,000 are available.

The small grants fund will reopen shortly. Find out more on the True Colours Trust website.

Trust for London

Grants are available for work that develops new and imaginative ways of addressing the root causes of London’s poverty and inequality, especially work which has the potential to influence and change policy, practice and public attitudes.

The average grant will be around £80,000 and will not normally exceed £150,000. The Trust funds voluntary and community organisations undertaking charitable activity in London. Although the funding priorities remain the same during the pandemic, the Trust is particularly interested in supporting work that responds to emerging needs as a result of coronavirus.

The closing dates for applications are:

  • 2 February 2021, 1pm
  • 1 June 2021, 1pm
  • 5 October 2021, 1pm

Visit the Trust for London website for more information.

Trusthouse Charitable Foundation

Grants are available to support small and medium-sized charitable and not-for-profit organisations based in and carrying out work to improve the lives of people in areas of extreme urban deprivation in the UK.

Funds are available for revenue costs including core costs, salaries, running and project costs.

Apply online through the Trusthouse website.

Volant Charitable Trust - COVID-19 Response Fund

Grants are available to UK charities that demonstrate a strong focus on alleviating social deprivation and helping vulnerable groups who have been affected by the coronavirus pandemic.

Registered charities, community interest companies, community organisations and social enterprises based and working in the UK (or abroad) may apply. 

The organisation must demonstrate how it is directly involved with the alleviation of social deprivation and how it will support vulnerable groups affected by the coronavirus pandemic. 

Find out more information on the COVID-19 Response Fund website.

Warburtons Families Matter Community Grants Programme

Small grants are available for local projects, activities and organisations that have charitable aims and that will be of real direct benefit to families in England, Scotland and Wales. Organisations should be targeting key social issues and be able to provide evidence of the impact of their work.

Community grants of up to £400 are available. Not-for-profit organisations with charitable purposes that are operating in England, Scotland and Wales are eligible to apply.

Applications are considered quarterly. Decisions are typically made within six weeks of the deadline. The next deadline for applications the 8 February 2021.

Find out more about the grants programme.

Weaver’s Company Benevolent Fund

Grants are available for smaller UK based charities working with young offenders, prisoners and ex-prisoners, and young disadvantaged people, especially those at risk of criminal involvement within the UK.

The fund has determined two priority groups:

  • Disadvantaged young people
  • Offenders and ex-offenders, particularly those under 30 years of age

The maximum grant is usually £15,000 per annum.

Find out more about the benevolent fund.

Youth Music Programme  

Grants are available to a range of organisations for music projects in England that increase the number of children and young people across England who have the opportunity to take part in high-quality musical activities, particularly those who are experiencing challenging circumstances and who face barriers to music making.

The following funds are currently available:

  • Fund A - grants of between £2,000 and £30,000 are available for between six and 24 months.
  • Fund B - grants of £30,001 to £200,000 are available for projects lasting at least 18 months.

Match funding is required at the following rates:

  • Grants of £2,000 to £30,000: 10% (at least 5% must be cash match funding).

Find out more information and when the fund will reopen on the Youth Music website.

Youth Futures Foundation

The Youth Futures Foundation is committed to transforming employment for young people. They recognise that achieving this systemic change will be a team effort involving a broad range of employers, government, funders and organisations working with young people. Their activities and grant giving are designed to reflect this. Find out more about their grant opportunities on the website.

Advice and information for voluntary and community sector organisations

Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme Guidance

The law firm Bates Wells have produced information and guidance on the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme.  Visit the Bate Wells website for more information.

Richmond CVS

Richmond CVS is commissioned by the Council to offer advice and information for voluntary organisations and can help support organisations in the following ways:

  • Supporting organisations to apply for emergency charitable funding
  • Ensuring organisations are access local funding that your organisation is entitled to
  • Providing practical advice on implementing an emergency funding plan
  • Connecting organisations to further sources of support
  • Providing a volunteering portal to match local volunteers with opportunities

Visit Richmond CVS for more information or contact them by: 

  • Email: action@richmondcvs.org.uk
  • Phone: General enquiries - 020 8843 7945
  • Phone: Funding helpline number for local groups 07401 279771 (Mornings only Tuesday to Thursday)

The British Red Cross has provided a free training course for anyone who is responding to the coronavirus outbreak. View the British Red Cross course

NCVO

A comprehensive guide being updated regularly, which includes sections on:

  • How to protect staff, volunteers and visitors
  • Whether to cancel events and activities
  • How to support beneficiaries and service users, including those who are vulnerable or facing discrimination
  • How to manage finances, planning and insurance
  • Contingency planning

Updated guidance for trustees covering the technicalities of governance and serious incident reporting.

Arts Council

A guide and toolkit are available for cultural organisations on how to manage financial difficulties.

Charity Excellence Framework COVID-19

Information, guidance and resources including a free, online toolkit to increase impact and funding.

Co-operatives UK

A guide to HR issues during the coronavirus outbreak.

DCMS

General guidance for voluntary and community organisations.

The Federation of Small Business

Aimed at small businesses, but also relevant to small charities, social enterprises, community businesses and impact organisations.

It includes sections on:

  • If you have to close your organisation
  • Business insurance
  • Advice for employers
  • Measures for the workplace

Charity Comms

Templates and information on communications including 'crisis communications'.

The Charity Commission

Information answering frequently asked questions of the Commission on charity governance and staffing during the coronavirus outbreak.

The Small Charities Coalition

Information, guidance and resources for small charities during the coronavirus outbreak.

UK Fundraising

For information on a selection of virtual fundraising tools.

Charity Fundraising Ltd

Fundraising resources and consultancy. Free fundraising consultancy support for organisations affected by COVID-19 as well as articles on developing virtual fundraising events. 

Updated: 04 January 2021