Covid-19: Funding Opportunities

Listed below are a number of funding opportunities available during the current COVID – 19 Incident. However, One Knowsley work in partnership with a number of other organisations to bring you the Merseyside Funding Information Portal  which is updated daily.

If you have existing charitable grant funding:
150+ grant makers have signed a pledge of support for groups, offering reassurance for those who have received grants and whose delivery is now affected by the current situation:

Grants for individuals seeking support can be found at  Turn2Us:


Local/Liverpool City Region – Emergency Funds for Voluntary & Community Groups:

Steve Morgan Emergency Fund

The fund, of up to £1 million a week for an initial 12 weeks, is open to charities and not for profit organisations across the region (Merseyside, Cheshire (west of M6) & North Wales) to help with the costs of additional emergency services to support people affected by the virus; it will also help charities experiencing a loss of fundraising revenue to stay in business.

Applicant organisations need to have been operating before April 2018.
Key on-line application questions (each response 100 words max) include:

• Please tell us about your organisation, its aims and main activities.
• What measures are you taking within your organisation to maintain services during the current crisis?
• Please tell us why you need the money
• What will you use the emergency funding for to help your community in hardship as a result of Covid-19?
• Where else have you applied for emergency funding, amount requested and when you can expect a decision?
• How many people will directly benefit from this project?

You will also need to detail the following along with supporting documentation:
• Amount requested (initially over 12-week period)
• Total expenditure last financial year
• Amount of Unrestricted Reserves
• Total budget (expenditure) for 2019/20

Apply online at: Steve Morgan Eligibility & Application Form
If you do not meet any of the eligibility criteria your application will not be processed.
If you are unsure please email


LCR Cares COVID – 19 Community Support Fund

Liverpool City Region (LCR) and the National Emergencies Trust (NET) funding to support community and voluntary organisations on the frontline. Open to voluntary, community and faith organisations, registered charities, social businesses, churches, PTAs and parish/town councils. Grants of up to £5,000 will be available initially. Recently formed organisations can apply. Eligible projects include:

• Foodbanks
• Food/care package delivery to vulnerable people self-isolating
• Delivery of services and projects supporting the most vulnerable, such as older people e.g. a telephone    support/friendship  service or delivering online activities to help reduce isolation
• Emotional and mental health wellbeing
• Financial Inclusion, support to access benefits and debt advice

Priorities will be reviewed regularly and changed/additions made as fundraising and the outbreak develops.
Details and application at:


P H Holt Foundation 

This local fund welcomes applications from small and medium sized Merseyside charities operating in any Merseyside borough. Its funding can provide help as you deliver new programmes to reach people affected by the pandemic, or help keep your vital charity services running

- Resources for specific community-based activities
- Supplies for beneficiaries i.e. emergency food, toiletries, household products or other items
- Help with running costs or overheads due to a disruption to existing services
- Support for salary or volunteer costs to keep a service functioning
- Assistance to deliver a service differently or to reach more people needing help

To be eligible for an emergency grant, you must be a registered charity in Merseyside with an income under £1 million.
P H Holt will fund activities in one or more of the five metropolitan boroughs. Grants start at £1,000 with most awards falling between £5,000-£10,000.

These are for a single year. Contact the Foundation office on 0151 237 2663 any Wednesday to Friday if you would like further advice before sending your application in.

Check out its application form for further details which can be found at the website above.


National Funds:

Aviva Community Fund

Small charities and constituted community groups with innovative ideas that benefit their community can apply for funding of up to £50,000 for projects that build more connected, more resilient communities and give people the tools to become more financially independent. In response to the Covid-19 Aviva are temporarily opening up the Fund to projects that will ensure organisations can adapt or maintain critical services and infrastructure in response to the impacts of COVID-19. Projects must still relate to one of Aviva’s key funding areas. The closing date for this funding round is the 28th July 2020.

•£5 Million Loneliness COVID-19 Grant Fund

The Government (Department for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport, Office for Civil Society and Baroness Barran MBE) has launched a £5m fund today to tackle loneliness resulting from the coronavirus outbreak and period of social distancing. National organisations working to tackle loneliness and build social connections are invited to apply for a share of the £5m funding to continue and adapt their critical work. Grants of between £500,000 and £1m will be awarded to successful applicants whose services:
• can reach people in ‘cold spots’ where informal neighbourly support and small local charities are not able to fully meet needs around social connection;
• serve the needs of groups particularly at risk of loneliness, including those noted in ONS analysis and Community Life Survey and Active Lives Survey data;
• continue, adapt or expand existing provision where there is a track record of successful delivery; AND
• cannot be provided without this additional funding.

Services must meet all of these aims to be eligible for this funding. The application form and further guidance is available here. The deadline for applications is 12pm on Friday,29 May 2020 and completed applications should be returned by email to the Loneliness Fund team at

The COVID-19 Impact Programme for Armed Forces Communities

The Ministry of Defence has announced £6 million of funding for armed forces charities doing vital work to support serving personnel, veterans and their families during the COVID-19 outbreak. The money is part of a package of support announced by the Chancellor in April to ensure charities can continue their vital work during the pandemic. The sum is in addition to existing funding for veteran’s mental health and the Armed Forces Covenant Trust.

The money will be administered by the Armed Forces Covenant Trust Fund, backed by the MOD and the Cabinet Office, and distributed in grant form to charities and Community Interest Companies across the UK addressing the impact of coronavirus on the elderly (including care homes), on mental and physical health, on welfare, on domestic violence, on housing, the criminal justice system, service families (including childcare), and in terms of bereavement and employment.
Grants of up to £60,000 (or £125,000+ in exceptional circumstances) are available. Applicants must demonstrate that they have:

• a strong history of working with people from Armed Forces communities, with at least one year’s worth of published accounts;
• fewer resources coming into their organisation due to Covid-19
• the same, or increased, demand for the services that they deliver to people from Armed Forces communities.

The closing date for applications is Friday,29 May 2020.

The Rank Foundation

The Rank Fundation remains operational during the COVID-19 pandemic and has made the following funds available to members of its existing network of current and past grant recipients:
• An Emergency Fund for immediate grants of up to £750 to purchase equipment, technology or memberships; and
• A Resilience Fund for grants to cover cashflow, fundraising and loss of income challenges relating to the current COVID-19 related climate, including those facing significant, unplanned demand on services.

Internal processes have been streamlined to ensure a swift and timely response to all requests. The charity is also reviewing its Pebble Grants programme to allow for wider public access. If you’re an existing member of The Rank Foundation’s network, you can apply for grants from the Emergency or Resilience Funds via the RankNet Community Platform. Keep an eye out for news on the Pebble Grants programme on the charity website here.

Top-up to local business grant funds scheme

At the weekend, the Government announced additional discretionary support for small businesses, including charities. This additional fund of £617m will be distributed via local authorities. It is aimed at small businesses – and charities – with ongoing fixed property-related costs.

The Government are asking local authorities to prioritise businesses in shared spaces, regular market traders, small charity properties that would meet the criteria for Small Business Rates Relief, and bed and breakfasts that pay council tax rather than business rates. But local authorities may choose to make payments to other businesses based on local economic need. The allocation of funding will be at the discretion of local authorities.
Businesses must be small, under 50 employees, and they must also be able to demonstrate that they have seen a significant drop of income due to Coronavirus restriction measures.

Full details can be found here.

Barclays – COVID-19 Community Relief Programme

Barclays have launched its 100 x 100 COVID-19 UK Community Relief programme (the 100 x 100 programme) and invites eligible UK-registered charities to apply for a £100,000 donation to support immediate COVID-19 relief work in communities across the UK.

Through the 100 x 100 programme, Barclays will make 100 donations of £100,000 each, representing an initial investment of £10m from Barclays’ £100m Community Aid Package, which was announced on April 7.

Charities applying should demonstrate a track record of delivering impactful, on-the-ground support to directly meet the needs of vulnerable communities facing social and economic hardship as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak. They will be able to articulate how funding from Barclays will be deployed to meaningfully support or boost their work and they will be able to meet the immediate needs of vulnerable communities by deploying Barclays’ donation within six months of receiving funds.

Further details of the 100 x 100 programme, and an online application form, can be found on Barclays’ website. Applications can be made between 4 and 22 May and will be reviewed by an internal Barclays committee. The bank expects to begin distributing funds in June, subject to completion of due diligence and additional internal governance requirements.

Power to Change

Power to Change, the independent trust that supports community businesses in England, is launching up to £12 million of emergency support to provide both immediate and medium-term help for community businesses facing a loss of trading income during the coronavirus crisis.

• £7 million in rescue funding for community businesses, offering grants up to £25,000 to contribute towards trading income losses incurred between April and June 2020. This first pot of funding is available to current and previous Power to Change grantees, and to community businesses which are members of Power to Change’s strategic partners – Co-operatives UK, Locality and the Plunkett Foundation – all of whom played a key role in designing this response.

• £5 million in recovery funding, to be made available later this year, based on learning from the first pot to help community businesses rebuild and recover strongly from the crisis.

Children In Need Emergency Essentials Programme 

The BBC Children in Need Emergency Essentials Programme which supports children and young people up to the age of 18 living with severe poverty as well as additional pressures such as domestic violence, disability or poor health in the family is currently open for applications from referral organisations that will be able to apply for grants on behalf of families or young people.

Emergency Support Package for Charities

The Government has announced a £750 million emergency support package for charities across the UK to ensure they can continue their work during the coronavirus outbreak. The funding package consists of £360 million direct from government departments to charities such as hospices and victim support charities that are providing vital services and helping vulnerable people through the current crisis; and £370 million for smaller charities, including through a grant to the National Lottery Community Fund. The National Lottery Community Fund is currently discussing with Government on how best to distribute the funding.

National Survivor User Network (NSUN) Covid-19 Fund

Worth noting that this is:

– aimed at small, user led groups
– up to £1K per group
– support for peer support and community action
– groups do not need to be constituted or have a bank account
– groups need to become members of NSUN – this is free and will bring additional benefits of advice and support.

This is part of a wider support fund with larger grants being managed by Mind.

National Lottery Community Fund

All National Lottery Community Fund (NLCF) funding decisions in the next six months  will be devoted to responding to the COVID-19 crisis. The NLCF are currently working with Government on how best to distribute the funding.

• WRAP COVID-19 Emergency Surplus Food Grant

As part of the UK Government’s collaborative response to supporting key infrastructure throughout this difficult time, Defra is today making £3.25m available through the Resource Action Fund administered by WRAP. The COVID-19 Emergency Surplus Food Grant will be delivered in three phases.
Phase 1: WRAP has approached a target list of small redistribution organisations who have previously applied to the fund to ascertain their immediate need for potential funding support.
Phase 2 provides funding opportunities for small surplus food redistributors and is now open.
Phase 3 is aimed  at medium-to-larger operators and is now open.

The aim of the grant is to assist surplus food redistributors in overcoming challenges that they are currently facing in obtaining surplus food from food businesses (such as retailers and food manufacturers) and distributing this to people in need or those considered vulnerable.

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.

Heritage Emergency Fund

The National Lottery Heritage Fund has announced a £50m fund to support the heritage sector as an immediate response to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak. The Fund is available to organisations across the full breadth of heritage. Organisations which are either a current grantee, or still under contract following a previous grant, can apply.

Arts Council England

Arts Council England are making £160 million of emergency funding available for those organisations and individuals who will need it during this crisis, they have also changed the funding requirements for individuals and organisations currently in receipt of their funding, to help alleviate pressure on them as best they can.

Clothworkers’ Emergency Capital Programme

The Clothworkers’ Emergency Capital Programme (CECP) will award small capital grants of up to £5,000 for essential capital items to adapt or increase services in response to the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. Visit their website for details on eligibility and key features of the fund.

Sport England Community Emergency Fund

Applications are currently being accepted to the £20 million Community Emergency Fund from any organisation delivering community sport and physical activity if it is experiencing short term financial hardship or the ceasing of operations due to the impact of coronavirus. Grants of between £300 and £10,000 can help community sport and physical activity organisations meet their obligations, in particular fixed costs, which are no longer supported with revenue as a result of coronavirus. This might cover expenditure on rent, utilities, insurance, facility or equipment hire, core staffing costs, and retrospective losses dating from 1 March 2020.

Persimmon – Building Futures Scheme

Persimmon’s Charitable Foundation has committed to relaunching its Building Futures scheme for 2020. As part of its sponsorship of Team GB, Persimmon will donate more than £1 million to support children in sport, health and education. They are calling on local groups within your area which support children to apply.

Persimmon – Community Champions

Persimmon’s Community Champions initiative has run since 2015 and gives away £64,000 every month in single donations up to the value of £1,000. So far over £3.5 million has been donated in the UK. Persimmon has decided that from April 2020 all funding will go directly to groups supporting the over 70s.

• Free Virtual Workbook

• SSE Fellow Hannah Broughton has created a free Virtual Workbook designed to support small to medium social enterprises who are looking at taking their services online with a limited budget. It covers everything from putting together an online offer, to safeguarding, online adaptations and impact collection.

• The Dragonfly Collective 

The Dragonfly Collective have just released a new toolkit on social enterprise business models. It includes tips and tools to refresh or create a social enterprise business model and is based on a review of 92 journal articles and interviews with the major infrastructure organisations in the UK.  Pioneers Post have been running a series of blogs by Dragonfly co-founder Tara Anderson alongside the toolkit. You can find the first blog here.

The National Lottery Community Fund 

The National Lottery Community Fund is now open for applications and will provide grants to activities supporting people and communities affected by COVID-19. They are prioritising funding projects and organisations supporting communities through the COVID-19 pandemic. They are reviewing the situation on an on-going basis and will share any updates or developments on their website. They have limited funding to support as many organisations as possible. So please only ask for what you need to support communities during this crisis.

Paul Hamlyn Foundation

The Paul Hamlyn Foundation launched ‘Explore’, a new early stage digital funding strand for their Tech for Good programme. Charities and not-for-profit organisations with incomes of between £75,000 and £10 million can apply for a grant and a 12-week learning programme to scope digital services and to explore how digital technology could transform the ways they work. The deadline to apply is 22nd June


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