Login / Sign-up

Forgot password?

Funding News: January 2021

Funding News: January 2021

Grant funding opportunities available over the coming months…

FUNDER: Local Connections Fund

OPENS: Early January

AREA: The UK Government has announced £7 million of funding to tackle loneliness this winter and will be aimed at those most at risk of loneliness during the coronavirus pandemic.

The funding will be targeted at sectors that are well-known for having the power to bring people and communities together such as the arts, libraries, charities and radio. It will also support cultural organisations, charities and local community groups who are delivering much-needed work to ensure no one feels isolated in their local community. The funding will be distributed via a number of existing schemes such as:

  • £5 million to Arts Council England for arts and library services, of which £3.5 million has been awarded by the Government to national charity The Reading Agency, for their Reading Well and Reading Friends programmes
  • £2 million to extend the Government’s Loneliness Fund launched in May this year
  • £500,000 to be distributed amongst the Audio Content Fund and the Community Radio Fund

The package builds upon the £4 million Local Connections Fund announced earlier this month, which will provide hundreds of small grants to charities and small grassroots organisations – such as book clubs, walking groups and other local projects – that are bringing communities together and reducing social isolation.



FUNDER: Steel Charitable Trust (UK)

DEADLINE: 20th January 2021

AWARD: Between £2,500 – £25,000

AREA: Grants are available to registered charities in the UK working in the areas of arts and heritage, education, environment, health, or social and economic disadvantage. The Steel Charitable Trust is a grant-making trust supporting general charitable purposes. The Steel Charitable Trust was established in 1976 by Mr Walter Reginald Steel and Mrs Marjorie Steel. The Trust awards funding for projects that make a real impact in the areas of arts and heritage; education; environment; health; or social or economic disadvantage. The Trust awards funding in the following areas:

  • Arts and Heritage
  • Education
  • Environment
  • Health
  • Social or Economic Disadvantage

Applicants may apply for support towards:

  • Capital projects
  • Specific projects
  • Research programmes
  • Core costs




DEADLINE: 21st January 2021

AREA: The aim of the fund is to support the Black Community in the UK through grants to Black-led grassroot organisations and projects who are working to eliminate barriers to progress for Black women and girls and driving for long-term systemic change.

The CROWN UK Fund is now open for applications and invites organisations with expertise and capabilities in this space to apply for grants of up to £20,000.

Eligibility & Criteria

Dove is keen to receive applications from any organisations that have an innovative and creative approach to the way they engage Black women and girls in their community. The projects funded should meaningfully involve the women and/or girls they support to reach their full potential and break down barriers to success. Dove is not looking for the best written application but the most compelling.

  • UK-based grassroot organisations and/or programmes that are led by people who identify as Black/Black-mixed race
  • Funding must be used to help create lasting change in the lives of Black women and/or girls
  • Projects funded should aim to celebrate and empower Black women and/or girls and eliminate barriers to success

Address one or more of the following issues/needs:

  • Appearance based prejudice and discrimination
  • Education and vocational training
  • Emotional or psychological health
  • Empowerment
  • Individual growth and success
  • Leadership and career planning
  • Mentorship
  • Advocacy

Organisations must already be established as a social enterprise, charity or community project and be engaged in impactful work in their community. Organisations must be able to demonstrate the impact of the funding and their methods and ability to monitor and evaluate the project.

Evaluation Process

Applicants who meet the basic eligibility of the CROWN UK Fund will have their applications evaluated by a representative and expert panel. This panel will discuss the applications and evaluate the successful organisations who will receive the fund.

We will prioritise organisations that have a strong focus on the empowerment of Black women and girls. However, we will consider organisations that are not women-centric but that are actively engaging in projects/initiatives that will directly impact the advancement of Black women and/or girls.

If you are unable to submit your application in written format, please contact the CROWN UK Fund team at / 020 7198 8374 for alternative ways to apply. We will also be able to help if you have difficulty or need assistance submitting your application online. Please note that applying does not guarantee funds.

Click here to start your application.


FUNDER: Cripplegate Foundation – Community Chest (Islington)

DEADLINE: 25th January 2021

AWARD: up to £5,000

AREA: Islington Community Chest is provided through a partnership between Islington Council and the Cripplegate Foundation, which also administers the scheme. Grants are available to voluntary organisations that work with Islington residents, particularly those who are experiencing poverty and/or isolation. The funding aims to support projects that will:

  • Advise and support residents
  • Raise educational achievement and improve skills and employability
  • Reduce isolation and increase people’s involvement in the local community
  • Improve mental and physical health
  • Improve the local environment and contribute to safer communities.

Applications are accepted from organisations that support people who live, or who are in full-time education, in the Borough of Islington. This includes unregistered community groups, registered charities, social enterprises, companies limited by guarantee, community interest companies and other not-for-profit organisations. To be eligible, applicants must:

  • Have an annual income of less than £100,000
  • Have a management committee of at least three unrelated people
  • Have a governing document or constitution
  • Have a bank account
  • Be working with Islington residents

Priority is given to organisations: With a turnover of less than £50,000 a year. Based in Islington. That have good knowledge of, and connections to, other local organisations and services. Working with disadvantaged Islington residents.



FUNDER: Guildhall School of Music – Showcase how the arts have supported communities during Covid (UK)

DEADLINE: 30th January 2021

AWARD: between £1,000 and £5,000

AREA: Grants are available to communities, community organisations, researchers, creatives, artists, charities and arts organisations in the UK to premiere or showcase their work at DISRUPT 2021.

DISRUPT 2021 is a digital festival that aims to explore how the performing arts have supported communities during the pandemic and how a year of uncertainty and change has encouraged new and radical ways of working.

This could be:

  • New and experimental performance-based projects created with, by and for communities during the pandemic
  • Tools and tactics to build skills on new or different ways of working in the performing arts, including practical steps on how communities, artists and organisations can collaborate
  • Projects that explore alternative and more democratic futures for the performing arts.

DISRUPT is a partnership with Barbican; Culture, Health and Wellbeing Alliance; Culture Mile; Guildhall School of Music & Drama; Lived Experience Network, Maya Productions; Museum of London; and Slung Low.

Applications must be co-written by a community partner and a creative partner.



FUNDER: Windrush Community Fund (UK)

DEADLINE: 12 February 2021 (23:59)

AWARD: between £2,500 and £25,000

AREA: The Government is offering funding to charities, community organisations, and/or grassroots organisations to promote and raise awareness of the Windrush Scheme (documentation), Windrush Compensation Scheme or both.

The new £500,000 Fund offers grants of for projects that reflect the objectives of the Windrush Community Fund, which are to:

  • Increase awareness and visibility of the support available under the Windrush Scheme (documentation) and Windrush Compensation Scheme
  • Reach more communities and those individuals who may have been affected because they could not show that they had a right to live in the UK
  • Ensure that individuals and communities have accurate information about the schemes and how to apply
  • Build capacity at a community and grassroots level in supporting those affected to access the schemes

The funding is for activities including, but are not limited to:

  • Holding events, for example: cost of venue, refreshments and other associated costs
  • Producing and distributing marketing materials
  • Running communications campaigns, both online and in person. The guidance notes provide details on social distancing measures related to Covid-19)
  • Engaging and supporting people who are eligible under the Windrush Scheme (documentation) and Windrush Compensation Scheme
  • Accessing and using communication channels, for example social media, local radio
  • Securing support from corporate partners, public or prominent figures or advocates

Voice4Change England will be administering the fund. They work with a large number of black, Asian and minority ethnic community groups and partners across the UK.
There will be two application rounds.



FUNDER: Comic Relief and Paul Hamlyn Foundation – £1m Digital Development Fund

DEADLINE: 12th February 2021, 12 PM

ASREA: It aims to support UK non-profits to test and develop digital service delivery solutions.
The fund is part of their joint Tech for Good programme, which was originally developed in 2016 in response to the need for charities to use technology to explore different approaches to delivering better services.

Now, the Covid-19 pandemic has increased the need for organisations to explore how digital and design capabilities can help transform or maximise their work in supporting vulnerable people.

The programme will offer grants of up to £70,000 over a nine-month period from June 2021, alongside access to technical support from experts provided by CAST (Centre for the Acceleration of Social Technology). It is available to individual not-for-profit organisations or those working in partnership. Applicants should aim to define, test and develop digital solutions that meet a social need or challenge, or aim to adapt or re-purpose existing technology to do so.
Moira Sinclair, chief executive of Paul Hamlyn Foundation, said: “The Covid-19 crisis has forced charities to adapt their services at pace. We hope that our Tech for Good programme with Comic Relief will help them to explore and develop the digital solutions they need to improve the way they work and the support they provide to people and communities.

“The programme is not only about creating a new product or tool – existing technology can be re-purposed or adapted. It’s about understanding where and how a digital approach can make a positive difference for organisations and those they work with.”

The application process is open to UK charities with incomes of between £75,000 and £10m.

More information here


FUNDER: Covid-19 Emergency Loan Fund for UK Social Enterprises (UK)

DEADLINE: 11.59pm on the 31st March 2021.

AWARD: between £100,000 to £1,500,000

AREA: Social Investment Business has announced that their Resilience and Recovery Loan

The £25 million fund provides emergency loans with no fees or interest for the first twelve months to social enterprises and charities which are facing financial difficulty and disruption to their trading due to the coronavirus pandemic. The Fund is intended to provide working capital until normal business can resume for organisations that are improving people’s lives across the UK. Loans, which are backed by the Government’s existing Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme, could be used to cover delays in trade payments, or for business modification to meet increase in service demand.

Applicants will be considered on a first come first served basis.



FUNDER: BBC Children in Need

DEADLINE: 11.30 am on the 12th April 2021

AWARD: up to £10,000

AREA: Not for profit organisations can apply for grants of up to £10,000 per year for up to 3 years for projects that help children and young people overcome the effects of illness, distress, abuse or neglect; disability; behavioural or psychological difficulties; and poverty and deprivation.

The funding is available to:

  • Charitable incorporated organisations and Scottish charitable incorporated organisations
  • Community interest companies (CIC) limited by guarantee
  • Companies limited by guarantee with a clause in their governing document preventing distribution of profit (including social enterprises)
  • Housing associations
  • Industrial and provident community benefit societies
  • Registered charities
  • Religious institutions
  • Special schools – These are provisions for children with learning difficulties or disabilities which cannot be met within a mainstream setting

Projects funded through BBC Children in Need aim to make a difference in children’s lives that help prevent or overcome the effects of the disadvantages they face. Projects achieve these differences by either working directly with children or seeking to improve their social and physical environments.



FUNDER: Blue Spark Foundation – Education and Development of Children and Young People (England)


AWARD:  up to £5,000, (average £2,000)

AREA: Schools, colleges and community groups in England can apply for grants to BlueSpark Foundation to support the education and development of children and young people through educational, cultural, sporting and other projects. BlueSpark is particularly keen to support projects which will help enhance the self-confidence, team working skills and future employability of children and young people. In most cases grants will be made on a relatively small scale.  Many of the grants the Foundation makes are under £2,000 and none are more than £5,000.

Funding provided by BlueSpark for a project must be crucial to the project rather than marginally incremental to its funding. The funding available can be for physical assets (such as iPads, sports equipment, or lighting for stage productions) or for services or facilities (such as sports coaching or music or drama tuition) or simply for the provision of experiences (such as theatre visits). These examples are intended to be illustrative and not restrictive as to the funding which BlueSpark may provide to support projects.



FUNDER: Return to Play: Community Asset Fund


AWARD: between £10,001 to £50,000

AREA: Sports clubs, local authorities,  schools and community organisations can apply for grants to help clubs and community groups through the ongoing coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic to return to play. The Return to Play: Community Asset Fund provides capital funding, to help local sports clubs and organisations to adapt and open important places and spaces so people within their community can return to play and physical activity, safely. The focus is on responding to the immediate challenges of sports and physical activity returning to play. Priority will be given to:

  • Projects located in areas of high deprivation
  • Organisations working with Black, Asian and minority ethnic communities, people on lower incomes, disabled people, people with long-term health conditions and people experiencing a greater burden of care because of coronavirus
  • Organisations that don’t have a significant level of reserve funding available to utilise


Leave a comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Meeting of Minds

Subscribe to our membership packages


Unrivalled access to our entire library.

Africa in Focus

Lionising the voices and stories that matter.

Real Reads

Personal reflections intersecting gender and race.

Grad Zine

Exploring the student experience globally.

More like this

Join The Team: Social Media Coordinator

We are seeking an exceptional individual with excellent digital marketing and social media skills, to help us grow our community and expand our reach

Creative Future: 2021 Writers’ Award Competition is now open for entries 

The UK’s only national competition for all underrepresented writers. Win over £10,000 in cash and writer development prizes

Black Girls Rock: BAFTAS 2021

Overwhelmingly, the night belonged to Rocks, with the breakout star Bukky Bakray winning the EE Rising Star Award