Getting funding for projects can be a nightmare! Where do you look? When can you apply? What can you apply for? How do you write the application? Just some of the many questions that will go through people’s minds when thinking about getting funding. But whilst it is true that there are so many different options it can be a very confusing landscape, at the same time there is a lot of help and support available for people whether looking to get funding for something completely new, or to continue/develop something that is already happening. I am part of that pipeline of help for you and am here to give you confidence in your own abilities as you learn how best to navigate the world of funding, and to support you in completing applications according to need.
I often share posts on our social media about funds that are available – and there are many! So for this week’s blog, I thought it would handy to group some of the recent posts together in one place for you. There are countless more funders out there – these are literally just some of the recent ones we’ve shared news on. For more, you can get information in a various different ways but we will highlight:
Community and Third Sector Recovery Programme
This is a new programme from the Scottish Government that aims to support charities, community groups, social enterprises and voluntary organisations that are supporting people and communities through the shift from lockdown to recovery. As well as providing ongoing crisis support, they will be planning and implementing changes to adapt and thrive in a very different social and economic climate.
It has two strands to the programme:
- Adapt and Thrive: This part is more about support to adapt rather than just funding your project. It offers tailored, specialist advice, but can also provide grants and loans. It is delivered in partnership by Firstport, Corra Foundation, SCVO, Just Enterprise, Community Enterprise and Social Investment Scotland.
- Communities Recovery Fund: This is funding to implement changes to reintroduce the delivery of existing services and activities that have been suspended or severely reduced because of COVID-19 and/or deliver new services identified as a priority by the community as a result of COVID-19. The funding will consider grants for individual organisation applications between £5,000 – £25,000 to implement changes to facilities, services and activities. It will also consider grants for partnership applications up to £75,000. There will be a 21 day turnaround for a response to your application which is really welcome.
This programme just opened this week and will be open until March 2021 when any funding should be spent. However, as this fund was prepared ahead of the latest restrictions, I can see changes being made to this in time. As always though, the sooner an application is submitted, the better. If you need support, guidance, or just another pair of eyes to read over something, then please get in touch.
The National Lottery Community Fund
Nothing new here from this stream of funding, but because of Covid-19, they have lifted their plans to pause and redevelop their funding as they reached the end of its 5 year cycle. Instead, all current funding programmes will remain open for an extra 18 – 24 months, though they will be adapted as needed. By remaining open for applications, they hope they can better support the third sector through COVID-19 and recovery.
There is more information in the link above that will take you to CVS Falkirk’s website, but the headlines for now are:
- the National Lottery Awards for All and Young Start funds will remain open and unchanged
- the Improving Lives grants remain open, but will be shorter, quicker to access, and will fund a wider range of work focused on recovery from COVID-19
- from Thursday 1st October, the maximum grant will be £200,000, from on year up to 3 years, with a single stage application.
- Community-Led Activity grants remain open; the team are reviewing these now to make sure they are relevant to the current situation, and will make any changes before the end of 2020.
- COVID-19 responses are still prioritised across all funds, but they remain open to non-COVID-19 related work too.
This fund is always a popular source for people searching for funding and as our own project is funded by them, we have a good relationship with them so can be an extra strong source of support for you as a result.
Aviva Community Fund
This fund is always very busy but rather than just giving direct funding, this is a form of CrowdFunding but as well as wider public funding possibilities, Aviva employees will be able to view projects and between them will share out £250,000 of funding.
The current round of applications, for fresh ideas looking to secure up to £50,000, is open until 13 October. Those approved to go forward will have crowdfunding pages created for them that will be live from 11 November to 10 December and can be shared as widely as you wish.
So this could be as much about raising awareness of your project as well as generating funding. And as before, if you want some guidance on submitting an application here then get in touch.
The Robertson Trust
At the point of writing, Scotland is eagerly awaiting the new funding strategy from this well respected funder. The link above gives some insight from their Head of Giving as to what we can expect from the new look strategy which is due to be launched any day now. They have extensively consulted on what organisations required, and then extended that consultation once we were hit by Covid-19 to see how they can respond to that. So, the main points we can expect to see are:
- More core, unrestricted and longer-term funding
- Less emphasis on match-funding
- Less emphasis on financial independence post-grant
- More shared learning
- To continue funding a breadth of topics – although their top focus remains on tackling the causes of, and solutions to, poverty and trauma.
All these headline points are very welcome news but will undoubtedly mean the funds could be even more competitive, so we need to ensure applications are as strong as possible. Whilst I will keep you updated and will of course be here to support any application you choose to make, at the bottom of the page linked above is a chance to sign up to the mailing list for the Trust so you can get information first hand.
I want everyone to feel special and valued and they will see what they can aspire to.Ethel Robertson, Co-Founder of The Robertson Trust
I love these words from one of the Robertson sisters which sum up why I do this job, so it is a fitting place to end this week. And if helping you understand and navigate the world of grant funding is part of that journey for you, then please get in touch.
Dan Rous, Community Coach, 07444 873151, firstname.lastname@example.org