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. Open for applications, apply by the end of November 2020 to be considered at the February 2021 Trustee grant decision meeting.

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.

Round 2 – closes on 30 November 2020. Visit the Armed Forces Covenant Fund Trust website to find out more.

Asda Foundation

Getting Schools Back on Track

Asda Foundation recognises the difficulties which have risen during COVID-19. They are committed to supporting communities and have created new activities to support. As schools are now back, Asda Foundation is committed to supporting children getting back into the classroom and parents back at work. This new Asda Foundation grant is to help families who may be struggling financially and need extra support.

Small grants are available to not-for-profit organisations. Applications are made via the group’s local Asda store’s Community Champion. Application deadline 15 November 2020. Visit the Asda Foundation website for more information.

BAME Healthy Communities Surviving COVID-19 Fund

Grants are available for Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) led voluntary, community and social enterprise sector organisations across the UK to help them support their communities during and beyond the coronavirus crisis, building wellbeing, resilience and capacity.

Various levels of funding, up to a value of £50,000, are available. Organisations with an annual turnover of more than £150,000 are unlikely to be funded.

The deadline for applications is 30 October 2020. Find more information on the AHPN website.

Big Society Capital - Resilience and Recovery Loan Fund

A new £25m Loan Fund will provide social enterprises and charities with emergency loans with no fees or interest for 12 months. The fund supports organisations that are improving people’s lives across the UK who are experiencing disruption to their normal business model as a result of COVID-19.

Application deadline 5pm on Friday 13 November 2020. Further details can be found on Social Investment Business Group.

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.

British Cycling Places to Ride Programme

Grants are available to not-for-profit organisations in England that are developing cycling activity in their community for the development of new, or the improvement of existing, cycling facilities in communities.

The key objectives of the programme are:

  • Inspiring people to ride
  • Connecting the community
  • Building a lasting legacy

Find out how to apply on the British Cycling website. Application deadline 16 November 2020.

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.

CAF Resilience Fund

The CAF Resilience Fund exists to help charitable organisations in England that support the people hardest hit by COVID-19.

The Charities Aid Foundation (CAF) has opened a £20m fund to distribute its share of the government’s coronavirus support package.

Small and medium-sized charities in England have until 10 November to apply to the CAF Resilience Fund, which will make grants of between £10,000 and £100,000. Find out more at CAF Resilience Fund.

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 COVID-19 Community Grant

The aim of this fund is to support local grass roots organisations to respond to the needs of vulnerable individuals, families and communities during the COVID-19 crisis and recover from the impact the pandemic has had on their services.

The Comic Relief COVID-19 Community Fund will provide grants of £4,000 to English grassroots organisations in order for them to respond to the current crisis and recover through enhanced Capacity building grants of £1,000.

Apply online through Groundwork UK. The fund closes February 2021.

Community-Led Organisations Recovery Scheme

The £9.5 million COVID-19 Community-Led Organisations Recovery Scheme is being delivered by Power to Change, Locality, The Ubele Initiative and Social Investment Business on behalf of the National Lottery Community Fund. Find out about the Lottery’s other schemes.

COVID-19 Community-Led Organisations Recovery Scheme offers grants up to £100,000 to community organisations in England who are facing financial difficulties caused by COVID-19. The scheme is aimed at organisations delivering services in their local community to support people who are at high risk from COVID-19, with an emphasis on Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME)-led or BAME-supporting businesses.

Find out more on Power to Change.

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. Their open funds:

  • National Lottery Project Grants - Our open access programme for arts, museums and libraries projects
  • Support for Freelance workers - investing £2 million in funds that have been set up to help freelance workers in the arts and culture community, such as technicians, stage managers, artists and performers

Visit the Arts Council Website for further details.

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.

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 - COVID-19 Emergency Fund

Small grants to support young refugees and asylum seekers during the COVID-19 pandemic. Given the growing impact of COVID-19, the organisation has launched an emergency relief fund.

The objectives of the scheme are to support the immediate health and wellbeing of young asylum seekers and refugees during the pandemic, and to help to relieve destitution and poverty in general. Grants of up to £250 are available.

Groups assisting young asylum seekers or refugees (aged 16-38), based in the UK, who are vulnerable and in need of immediate financial support during the COVID-19 pandemic are eligible to apply.

The fund has reopened for a second round. Applications can be submitted at any time as long as funds are available.

Find out more on the Hope for the Young website.

BBC Children in Need

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

BBC Children in Need are planning to open two new funding rounds in the next six months. The first will open before the end of the year (2020), followed by a further funding round in Spring (2021). These funding rounds will be open for applications for grants of £10,000 and larger awards of over £10,000.

Visit the BBC Children in Need website to apply.

Home For All grants fund (Crisis)

Emergency grants to support local organisations that are meeting the current needs of those experiencing homelessness across the UK and who are affected by the coronavirus crisis.

You can apply for amounts between £20,000 and a maximum of £100,000. Applications are currently paused. Visit the Crisis website for more information about these grants.

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.

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.

NESTA Rapid Recovery Challenge

Registered UK businesses, charities, community interest companies, community groups and public bodies are invited to apply for support to accelerate innovations that can help vulnerable workers that have been hardest hit by the coronavirus crisis to access jobs and financial help.

The programme will find and support tools and services that improve access to jobs and money for people across the UK, focusing on those hardest hit by the economic shock resulting from coronavirus.

Find more information on the NESTA 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.

Sport England Funds

Grants to help community sport and physical activity organisations who are experiencing short term financial hardship or the ceasing of operations due to the ongoing coronavirus crisis.

The Sport England Funds have been paused but will reopen. 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 deadline for funding is 24 November 2020.

Find out more on the Strategic Legal Fund.

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 has invited small UK charities affected by the impact of COVID-19 to apply for grants of up to £3,000.

Registered charities in England and Wales, with a total annual expenditure of less than £40,000, can apply for funding 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.

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. Applications must be submitted by 2 February 2021.

Visit the Trust for London website for more information.

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. Applications must be received by 31 December 2020.

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.

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

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.

Application deadline 1pm, 19 November 2020. 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).

The next 2020 deadline for Fund A applications is 4 December (17:00) - subject to change as the coronavirus/COVID-19 situation continues to evolve.

Find out more 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:
  • 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


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.

Charity Excellence Framework - COVID-19 Funder Database

The free COVID-19 funder database is live. Searchable, using multiple criteria, with 545 funders; click through to 1,000s of funder websites. It takes 2 minutes to register and is free.

Co-operatives UK

A guide to HR issues during the coronavirus outbreak.


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: 21 October 2020