The National Innovation Centre for Rural Enterprise (NICRE) has recently launched an open R&I funding call.
NICRE aims to foster rural enterprise and unlock potential in the UK’s rural economies and shift the existing policy narrative. This call seeks to complement, and extend, NICRE’s research and evidence base on four rural enterprise priorities: Productive, Smart, Engaged, Resilient.
Projects will seek to improve rural business productivity and solve associated grand challenges. They should take place over a maximum period of up to 6 to 8 months and relate to, at least, one of the four priority areas for NICRE.
Each project can seek funding up to a maximum of £15,000 and the application deadline is 15 March 2021.
For more information on the scope of the call, eligibility criteria, and an application form, please visit the NICRE website: https://ncl.ac.uk/nicre/news/item/open-call/
The £16.5 million Youth Covid-19 Support Fund, which was announced in November 2020, is open to grassroots youth clubs, uniformed youth groups, and national youth and umbrella organisations, to help to mitigate the impact of lost income during the winter period due to the coronavirus pandemic, and ensure services providing vital support can remain open. The funding has been allocated from the £750 million charities support package and £1.7m of the £16.5m has been allocated to vital youth work qualifications and training.
Applications for the Youth Covid-19 Support Fund opened on 15th of January. The Fund will be administered by PwC. Applications to the Fund will be open for five weeks, and will close at 5pm on the 19th February 2021.
To distribute funding as soon as possible, government will make initial awards on a rolling basis, prioritising those deemed to have the greatest need against the stated criteria.
The National Lottery Heritage Fund has resumed accepting project funding and loan applications under a series of programmes including the following.
National Lottery Grants for Heritage (grants of £3,000 to £10,000 and £10,000 to £100,000): for projects with an emphasis on organisational resilience and inclusion. They will give priority to organisations working with heritage that have not received funding through the Heritage Emergency Fund or the cultural recovery and emergency funds provided by the UK government. The budget for National Lottery Grants for Heritage in phase 1 is £10million. They expect to make decisions on a rolling basis during January and February 2021.
National Lottery Grants for Heritage (grants from £100,000 to £250,000 and £250,000 to £5 million): Beginning 8 February 2021, they will resume accepting applications for grants from £100,000 to £250,000 and £250,000 to £5m. From February 2021, they will prioritise heritage projects that will:
They will also expect all projects to demonstrate that they are building long-term environmental sustainability and inclusion into their plans, as appropriate. New application and good practice guidance will be available on 8 February.
Heritage Recovery and Resilience Loans (loans of £50,000 to £250,000): Heritage Recovery and Resilience Loans are designed to help fund activities and costs that will develop and restart your organisation’s income generating potential. Loans offer fixed 0% interest rate, no fees for arrangement or early repayment, optional 12-month repayment holiday, repayment period is up to 5 years. The deadline for applications is 14 February 2021.
The National Lottery Community Fund is open to all applications that meet their criteria, including support during COVID-19. With the COVID-19 pandemic still with us, they'll continue to support people and communities most adversely impacted by COVID-19. They can support you to:
In order to support communities to thrive, they aim to:
The Awards for All programme can provide between £300 and £10,000 for up to one year. The Reaching Communities programme offers larger amounts of funding (over £10,000) for up to 5 years. The Partnerships programme also offers a larger amount of funding (over £10,000) for organisations that work together with a shared set of goals to help their community thrive – whether that’s a community living in the same area, or people with similar interests or life experiences.
This is a UK Portfolio funding programme aimed at supporting transformational, long-term change.
The UK Portfolio is where The Fund explores new approaches, experiment with how to do things differently, and look to fund work that is more future focussed.
The Growing Great Ideas programme has a focus on supporting transformational and long-term change. They are looking for visionary initiatives that go beyond individual organisations, and instead focus on ecologies, platforms, ecosystems, assemblages, networks and constellations. They expect these initiatives to be generating an infrastructure through which many things are possible.
They are looking to invest in different combinations of people, communities, networks and organisations that demonstrate an ability to seed and grow alternative systems, accelerate the deep transition of 21st-century civil society, and to learn and adapt as they go.
The minimum grant size is £150,000 and the minimum length is two years.
The UK insurance and long-term savings industry operates the Covid-19 Support Fund to help support some of the people hardest hit by the Covid-19 crisis.
The Fund has raised over £100 million, with £84m having been pledged in voluntary contributions from firms across the insurance and long-term savings sector. The Fund will work in partnership with the Charities Aid Foundation, and a network of partners, including the National Emergencies Trust and Business in the Community.
The key aim is to provide immediate relief to charities affected by Covid-19, as well as a longer-term programme of support for people, communities, and issues where there is the greatest need, including:
Seafarers UK is a leading provider of grants to maritime charities and charitable maritime projects, working to help serving and ex-serving seafarers and their families who are experiencing hardship. They meet this aim through supporting organisations which provide welfare and support services for seafarers.
Their grants policy is to support seafarers who are:
Applications can be submitted at any time of year.
This Small Grants Scheme is designed to support charities registered and operating in the United Kingdom, especially those working at grass roots and local community level, in any field, across a wide range of activities.
Online applications can be accepted from charities that have an annual turnover of less than £150,000 per annum. Larger or national charities will normally not be considered under this scheme.
The focus will be to make one-year grants only to cover core costs or essential equipment, to enable ongoing service provision, homeworking, or delivery of online digital services to charities that can show financial stability.
The priority will be to support local charities still active in their communities which are currently delivering services to the young, vulnerable, elderly, disadvantaged or the general community either directly or through online support if possible.
Grants are available between £1000 and £10,000.
Ofgem Energy Industry Voluntary Redress Scheme launched its new Carbon Emissions Reduction Fund in December. The fund will support charity initiatives that reduce the climate change impact associated with energy use.
Managed and delivered by Energy Saving Trust, the Energy Redress Scheme collects voluntary payments from energy companies that may have breached rules to compensate the effects on energy consumers that may have been affected. In line with Ofgem’s strategic approach, this fund looks to meet the challenge of achieving net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050.
The first round of the Carbon Emissions Reduction Fund contains £1 million and is open to charities in England, Scotland and Wales. The Carbon Emissions Reduction Fund aims to benefit all domestic energy consumers, not only those in vulnerable situations. The fund awards grants between £50,000 and £500,000 to projects that meet the following criteria:
The closing date for applications is 11 February 2021. Charities that are registered with the Energy Redress Scheme and have passed the due diligence process are eligible for application.
For the purposes of this grant scheme, ecology is defined as the scientific study of the distribution, abundance and dynamics of organisms, their interactions with other organisms and their physical environment. Applications should promote and engage the public with the science of ecology. Grants will not be awarded for purely nature conservation purposes or any activity that does not promote the science of ecology.
Grants of up to £2000 are available to support projects that:
The deadline for applications is 19 March 2021.
The deadline for applications to the UK Government’s £100 million Zoo Animals Fund has been extended until the 26 February 2021. The fund provides grants of up to £730,0000 to zoos and aquariums which need additional support in caring for their animals and essential maintenance following a drop in income caused by the coronavirus pandemic. Funding will also support rehoming costs in the event that zoos need to downsize or potentially close, and is open to those zoos which have already received support through the £14 million Zoo Support Fund.
The Green Homes Grant Scheme has been extended and now runs to March 2022. The government will provide a voucher worth up to £5,000 or £10,000 to help cover the cost of making energy efficient improvements to your home. Improvements could include insulating your home to reduce your energy use or installing low-carbon heating to lower the amount of carbon dioxide your home produces.
The government will provide a voucher that covers two-thirds of the cost of qualifying energy efficiency or low carbon heating improvements to your home. The maximum value of the voucher is £5,000.
If you are on a low income and receive certain benefits, you can receive a voucher covering all of the cost of the improvements. The maximum value of the voucher is £10,000.
To apply for the voucher, you must either:
There are three parts to this new fund. Two have been adapted from pre-coronavirus funds, with one extended, and all three will now focus on supporting a safe return to play.
Businesses could be eligible for £50,000 funding to help them reduce their food waste.
The Surplus With Purpose fund is open to companies seeking to unlock new or hard to reach surplus (or ‘waste’) food, as well as those that haven’t previously worked with FareShare.
Businesses could be eligible for up to £50,000 worth of funding (greater sums can be negotiated where appropriate for high volumes of surplus food).
FareShare will safely divert edible surplus food via their UK-wide network of almost 11,000 frontline charities and community groups.
More information for businesses interested is available on the scheme’s website.
When you hire new apprentices between 1 August 2020 and 31 March 2021, you can apply for extra funding to give your organisation a boost. If you take on new apprentices between 1 February 2021 and 31 March 2021, you can apply from 1 February 2021 to 30 April 2021
For apprentices aged:
The payment is in addition to the existing £1,000 you’ll already get for taking on an apprentice who is:
An incentive payment for hiring a new apprentice is different to the apprenticeship levy, and you can spend it on anything to support your organisation’s costs. For example, you could spend it on facilities, uniforms, your apprentice’s travel or their salary. You will not need to pay it back.
The Arts Council has reopened this fund with a budget of £59.8 million available until April 2021. They have prioritised reopening this programme to help fund independent organisations, creative practitioners and freelancers as quickly as possible.
Grants of between £1000 and £100,000 are available.
This programme supports projects that will contribute to the transformation of high streets and town centres in England helping them become thriving places, strengthening local communities and encouraging local economies to prosper. It is part of a wider initiative to revive heritage high streets in England, alongside Historic England’s High Street Heritage Action Zones.
This programme is for individual heritage buildings in, or transferring to, community ownership. They will support charities and social enterprises to develop projects with the potential to bring new life to high streets by creating alternative uses for redundant or underused historic buildings in town centres.
A range of grants are available:
Gigabit-capable broadband connections offer the fastest and most reliable speeds available, and the Government “is committed to a vision of a digitally connected Britain.”
Homes and businesses in rural areas of the UK may be eligible for funding towards the cost of installing gigabit-capable broadband when part of a group scheme.
Rural premises with broadband speeds of less than 100Mbps can use vouchers worth £1,500 per home and up to £3,500 for each small to medium-sized business (SME) to support the cost of installing new fast and reliable connections.
More information is available via the website.
The government offers grants to support the wider use of electric and hybrid vehicles via the Office of Low Emission Vehicles (OLEV). This includes:
For more information visit the website below.
You can find out more details about the government’s support for businesses through this website:
You can apply for three types of grant funding if you are preparing a Neighbourhood Plan:
All grants are now open.
The Rural Community Energy Fund (RCEF) is a £10 million programme which supports rural communities in England to develop renewable energy projects, which provide economic and social benefits to the community.
RCEF provides support to rural communities in 2 stages:
RCEF is being run by 5 regional Local Energy Hubs. If you would like to register your interest for the scheme, or would like further information, please contact the relevant hub for your area.
The National Churches Trust has three grant programmes currently open:
Energy Saving Trust has been appointed by Ofgem to distribute payments from energy companies who may have breached rules. The funds can pay for anything from making a home more energy efficient, to providing advice that helps consumers keep on top of their bills.
Energy Saving Trust has developed an open application process for charities seeking funding from the Energy Redress Scheme. Successful projects will be selected with input from an independent panel of experts and could cover a range of locations across England, Scotland and Wales.
The amount of funding available through the scheme varies throughout the year and will be reviewed on a quarterly basis in October, January, April and July. Eligible charities that have registered interest in the scheme will be notified when funds become available.
The minimum grant that can be requested is £20,000 and the maximum amount is the lesser of £2 million or the total value of the current fund.
The scheme can fund projects lasting up to two years, can fund 100 per cent of the project cost and can cover revenue and capital measures.
The Comic Relief Community Fund (England) is offering grants to grassroots community organisations with an income of less than £250,000.
There are two types of grants available to organisations whose work delivers on one of Comic Relief’s four strategic themes:
Funding is available to help you develop your organisation through a Capacity Building Grant (up to £1000).
Administration of the local funding is being managed by community charity, Groundwork, which specialises in transforming communities and the local environment for the better.
Many armed forces charities struggle to raise sufficient funding to support serving and former members of the British Armed Forces’ and sometimes their dependants who are in need. The Veterans' Foundation has been created to establish a new and nationwide source of funding to help these charities. It acquires its funds through the Veterans’ Lottery and donations.
The trustees of the Veterans' Foundation will disburse funds to Armed Forces charities and charitable activities.
They will support projects that:
You can apply for grants of any sum up to a maximum of £30K. Trustees will also consider a bid for a spread grant, i.e. £30K as £10K for each of the next three years. Please note that the trustees are likely to award more small grants than large grants. They will consider a range of factors including the service or item being applied for, the number of beneficiaries, the importance of the grant to the applicant charity and the needs of the beneficiaries.
Grants between £500 and £5000 are awarded to churches, chapels and other places of worship in the United Kingdom for the conservation of decorative features and monuments, but not for structural repairs.
Grants will be awarded to support smaller programmes of work concerned with the conservation of decorative or non-structural features such as:
The decorative feature, monument, etc must date from no later than 1896 (the year of William Morris’s death). The next deadline for applications is 31 March 2021.
The HIF offers tailored finance for charities, social enterprises and community businesses across the UK to develop sustainable heritage at the very heart of vibrant local economies.
Loans from £25,000 to £500,000 are available for up to three years with tailored terms and both flexible and incentivised interest rates for impactful projects. These could include both capital and interest repayment holidays.
HIF supports applicants across the UK who are undertaking a capital project or are looking to build upon or scale-up an existing enterprise.
The HIF is a joint initiative with contributions from the National Lottery Heritage Fund, Historic England, Historic Environment Scotland, Cadw and the Architectural Heritage Fund.
First Steps Enterprise Fund (FSEF) is a £300,000 pilot fund to support community organisations. The Social Investment Business manage this fund on behalf of the Asda Foundation.
Funding is available for community organisations (charities and social enterprises) based in England that are looking to take on their first loan to help them grow and become more sustainable. Particular preference is given to organisations that work in the following areas:
Funding packages of up to £30,000 are available (90% loan and 10% grant). The loan element is charged at 5% (fixed) to be repaid over a period of 4 years with an optional capital holiday for the first year. Up to £50,000 is available for exceptional cases.
Family Fund Business Services are working in collaboration with BBC Children in Need to deliver the Emergency Essentials programme supporting children and young people living with severe poverty as well as additional pressures such as domestic violence, disability or poor health in the family.
The programme can deliver or fund critical items such as:
Applications must be completed by a registered referrer who is part of an organisation that is supporting the family or young person and capable of assessing their needs.
Two funds are available to local communities to help with the disruption that will be caused by the construction of Phase one of HS2 between London and the West Midlands; the Community and Environment Fund and the Business and Local Economy Fund. The objective of these funds is to add benefit, over and above committed mitigation and statutory compensation, to communities and local economies along the route.
The administration of these funds is managed on behalf of HS2 Ltd by the charity Groundwork who will ensure both funds remain available for applications throughout the construction of Phase One.
Schools, colleges and community groups in England can apply for grants to Blue Spark Foundation for a wide range of projects. The Foundation value academic, vocational, artistic and sporting endeavour in equal measure but are particularly keen to support projects which will help enhance the self-confidence, team working skills and future employability of children and young people.
Many grants will be under £2,000 and none are more than £5,000.
Projects which could be supported include drama, music, sport, art and design, debating, public speaking, academic education, vocational training, community projects, enterprise projects and educational excursions. This list is illustrative and not exclusive as to the types of project that the Foundation support.
The Family Fund helps families across the UK who are raising a disabled or seriously ill child or young person aged 17 or under. You can apply to Family Fund subject to a number of criteria which include that you are the parent or carer of a disabled or seriously ill child or young person aged 17 or under and that you have evidence of entitlement to one of the following: Universal Credit, Child Tax Credit, Working Tax Credit, Income-based Jobseeker's Allowance, Income Support, Incapacity Benefit, Employment Support Allowance, Housing Benefit and Pension Credit.
See the website for more details.
SUEZ Communities Trust (formerly SITA) provides funding awards of up to £50,000 to not-for-profit organisations to undertake work that is eligible under the Landfill Communities Fund (LCF). Applications are considered for three areas of work which qualify for funding through the LCF. These include:
Projects can be supported that make physical improvements at sites located in any of 100 funding zones around qualifying sites owned by SUEZ Recycling and Recovery UK.
Help the Homeless makes grants to charitable organisations with the aim of helping homeless people return to the community and enabling them to resume a normal life. Grants are available to small and medium-sized charitable organisations to fund the capital costs of projects with grants of up to £5,000. The quarterly deadlines for grant applications each year are: 15 March, 15 June, 15 September and 15 December.
War Memorials Trust grants support repair and conservation works undertaken following best conservation practice. Almost all war memorials are eligible for support and custodians/owners can find information about eligibility and processes on the website.
Grants are available between 25% and 75% of eligible costs and are likely to be considered up to a maximum grant of £5,000 for non-freestanding war memorials while freestanding, non-beneficiary war memorials may be considered up to a maximum grant of £30,000. There is no minimum award.
War Memorials Trust seeks to help all war memorial custodians, whatever the nature and size of their war memorial by facilitating repair and conservation projects. Details on current eligibility and deadline dates as well as how to apply can be found at the web address below.
The Football Foundation provides grants for building or refurbishing grassroots facilities, such as changing rooms, 3G pitches, fencing, portable floodlights, pitch improvements and clubhouse refurbishment. The Fund is available to football clubs, schools, councils and local sports associations and gives grants for projects that:
Grants are available for between £10,000 and £500,000.
Prepared by Andy Dean, Assistant Director at the Rural Services Network
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