Coronavirus: funding updates

As we receive updates from our research team in Liverpool, we'll post links to coronavirus funding programmes and more to help you (remember - don't forget to share!)

Funders have been quick to issue statements on how they will support their grant holders in the coming months. The message is clear – they will listen to their grant holders and try and be as flexible as possible in terms of deadlines, reporting requirements and financial flexibility. Over 230 funders have now signed the covid-19 funder pledge to this effect.

In terms of funding, many have decided to support central appeals such as the National Emergencies Trust or national organisations such as the Trussell Trust. Others have created their own emergency funding schemes, details of which can be found below. We will of course keep you informed as new funds and resources emerge in the coming weeks.

Additionally, there’s also loads more information on over 8,000 funders on our Funds Online website – click here to find out more.

Thursday 9 April

The Evelyn Trust 

The Trust has made funding of up to £300,000 available to the Cambridge Biomedical Campus for applications for COVID-19 related medical research projects that will:

  • have an impact on the fight to contain the pandemic;
  • assist COVD-19 patients to recover;
  • will improve understanding of how to contain the virus; or
  • will provide a deeper understanding of how to manage the hospital environment.

In addition, the charity has set aside £40,000 of emergency funding for up to eight projects from local Cambridgeshire charities working on health and well-being in the community. Successful proposals will support online, home delivery or outreach services that are designed to support families or individuals in need who have been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more here.


The Oakdale Trust provides funding for charities and voluntary bodies working in Wales on social and community projects, penal reform and medical support. For the duration of the COVID-19 crisis, the trustees will provide support to registered charitable organisations in Wales that are working to mitigate the impact of the pandemic on communities. The trustees will meet monthly to process grant applications, prioritising those that can demonstrate an immediate and pressing need. Applications should be submitted online via the charity’s website, specifying the new COVID-19 grant programme. The first deadline for applications is Wednesday, 22 April 2020.


The Book Trade Charity has exceeded its fundraising target of £50,000 through a crowdfunder. Nearly 350 donations were made to fund a programme of hardship grants for booksellers affected by the impact of the COVID-19 crisis and economic downturn. The total has been matched by Penguin Random House, meaning over £100,000 is now available for hardship grants to booksellers, which The Book Trade Charity is administering. For more information on the charity, see its website here.


The Bring Joy Foundation, has launched a campaign to support seniors who are socially isolated throughout the COVID-19 crisis. Donations can be made via Funds will be distributed to local community groups and Home Instead Senior Care offices to supply craft materials, activities, communication tools and assistive technology to seniors to support them in their isolation. Grants are also available for seniors facing extra challenges during this time due to illness or disability. Local community groups, either registered or unregistered, that have had to suspend meetings can apply for this funding by clicking on the ‘Apply’ button on the homepage of the charity’s website.


The Teaching Staff Trust provides financial support when something unexpected has gone wrong for individuals that have worked within the educational sector for at least five years. The Trust is aiming to continue operations throughout the COVID-19 crisis, and applicants can include teachers, teaching assistants, nursery workers, caretakers and lunch supervisors. Grant payments can be used to help with bills, household costs, travel or other essentials. The application form can be completed via its website.

Wednesday 8 April

Barclays Foundation

Barclays Bank has announced the establishment of the Barclays Foundation, which will provide a #COVID19 Community Aid Package of £100 million to charities working to support vulnerable people impacted by the pandemic. Find out more.


The P H Holt Emergency Fund is now open for applications (8 April 2020). In response to the pandemic, the charity has opened an emergency fund, welcoming applications from small- and medium-sized Merseyside charities. Funding can be to help deliver new programmes to reach people affected by the pandemic, or to help keep vital charity services running.

To be eligible for an emergency grant, you must be a registered charity in Merseyside with an income under £1 million.

Grants start at £1,000, with most awards falling between £5,000-£10,000. Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis. To apply online, go to the charity’s website here. 


The Dulverton Trust is prioritising grant applications for its June and October Board Meetings from charities that meet its guidelines and are either (a) well placed to deliver vital services to vulnerable communities affected by the current COVID-19 crisis (previous grant recipients will receive priority, but new applicants may be considered); or (b) charities with which it has an existing relationship and need support to overcome funding challenges caused by the COVID-19 crisis.

The trust supports UK charities/ CIOs registered with the Charity Commission or OSCR that are working to produce significant impact in youth opportunities, general welfare, conservation, preservation, Africa or peace and humanitarian support. When considering applications, the charity is keen to know whether applicants have already explored all the options for financial support, including government schemes and emergency funds before seeking funding from the Trust. Further details are available on the website here.


Young Women’s Trust

The Young Women’s Trust has set up an Emergency Fund in response to the Coronavirus outbreak. The IFS has reported that young, low-paid women will be the worst hit during the Covid-19 lockdown as they’re more likely to work in a sector forced to stop trading because of the lockdown, such as in hospitality, retail or transport.

Young women can’t apply for funding themselves, but can be referred to the fund by Women’s Aid, Women’s Resource Centre, or Women for Refugee Women. The charity’s partners are identifying women who would benefit most from the fund, which will provide relief payments of £150 to young women ages 18-30 who are facing financial crisis and struggling to afford utilities, food, or rent.

You can donate to the fund here.


Rosa UK 

Rosa UK is trying to fundraise £250,000 to enable them to continue the vital work they do to support organisations providing essential services for women. Rosa is a grant making charity that funds grassroots women’s organisations such as Believe UK, Good Night Out, and Middle Eastern Women and Society Organisation.

These charities are crucial during the current pandemic, especially as domestic abuse levels are rising. The National Domestic Abuse helpline has received 25% more calls since lockdown and domestic murders have increased. Like many charities, the demand for their services has increased at a time where their funding has dramatically decreased and Rosa UK is trying fill this hole with crowd funding, which you can support here.



Tuesday 7 April

Support Adoption For Pets 

The largest grant giving charity in the UK who gives to animal welfare charities has announced that they will be giving an additional £400,000 to local animal sanctuaries suffering as a result of the Covid-19 outbreak.

The money has already reached sanctuaries in need, with the hedgehog centre at Wirral Animal Sanctuary receiving £5k and Rescue Us receiving £13k. Support Adoption For Pets is identifying themselves which charities they will support, but their application page is still open on their website for sanctuaries wishing to apply for funding.

Pets at Home, their parent charity, is donating an additional £300,000 as part of their VIP Lifelines scheme in the form of vouchers for sanctuaries to spend in store for animal food.


Further BWB free online seminars

Coronavirus Act: what are the implications for landlords and tenants?

Bates Wells’ real estate team is hosting a webinar to take you through the various property issues for charities arising from the Coronavirus crisis, including Landlord and Tenant matters, implications of the Coronovirus Act 2020, rent-freezes, break clauses, business rates and matters relating to residential properties. Register here.

Coronavirus and your charity – key legal issues to consider

As the coronavirus situation has escalated over the last week, we have seen a range of legal questions emerge for charities across the sector. This webinar, in association with NCVO, will explore the headline topics in brief, with a half-hour Q&A session. The Q&A will answer legal and regulatory questions you may have about the current environment. We’ll also be signposting to helpful advice and resources available online. Register here.


Ulster Garden Villages Ltd

Ulster Garden Villages has provided £70,000 matched funding to complement the £70,000 contribution from The Community Fund Northern Ireland to the Coronavirus Community Fund. Offering grants of up to £1,000 of emergency funding, it will support community organisations working with older people (aged 50 and over) and help them to deliver support around emerging issues relating to the virus.  In recognition of community need and urgency of response, the Foundation are working at speed with successful groups receiving funding within a week. Groups wishing to apply to the fund can do so here.


The Ballinger Charitable Trust

The Ballinger Charitable Trust has paused its grant application systems for the time being. Instead it has small amounts of money to grant to current and past grantees who are actively responding to help the North East England community they serve through the impacts of Covid 19. Grant monies can be put towards any additional cost of Covid 19 response work, with priority currently being given to support of older people, hospital discharges, tackling domestic abuse, and food and fuel support of local community families in disadvantaged areas. Grants will range from a few hundred pounds to no more than £1,000. To register interest, email


Buttle UK

During the current health crisis, Buttle UK is still fully operational, and committed to maintaining the distribution of its Chances for Children grants as closely to normal as possible. For many of the children and young people it supports, this crisis is amplifying the difficulties that already exist in their lives, increasing their isolation and forcing them to spend many more hours in homes that lack the bare essentials and comforts most of us take for granted.

The charity’s Chances for Children grants will, as always, be targeted at improving the social and emotional wellbeing of children and young people and their capacity to engage in education and learning. However, they will be tailored to meet current and changing needs as the immediate, and longer-term, impact of the crisis becomes clear. For example, due to restrictions placed on the UK population because of COVID-19 Buttle UK will not be providing funding for leisure activities, family days out, counselling or anything that involves being in the community for the foreseeable future. For the duration of these restrictions the support will focus more on:

  • Maintaining educational activity and stimulus within the home environment
  • Establishing and or maintaining internet access and electronic communications
  • Household essentials

Applications can be made in the usual way, via a support worker – more details here.



Monday 6 April

Sussex Crisis Fund 

The Sussex Crisis Fund, has reached £400k and has already funded 14 groups to deliver food parcels and help isolated older people. Find out more. 


Bolton’s Fund 

Grants of up to £1,000 are now available for community organisations working in Bolton through the Covid-19 Resilience Fund. Find out more. 


The Steel Charitable Trust , which counts promotion of health and social & economic disadvantage among its objects (as well as arts and heritage; education; & the environment), has made a comprehensive statement on its current grant-making policy, which is constantly under review as the COVID-19 situation develops. Currently:

  1. Applicants seeking emergency funding should apply in the first instance to their local Community Foundation (Luton & Beds), which the trust is fully supporting;
  2. If unsuccessful, applicants can apply directly to the Trust for emergency funding.
  3. If the applicants are from outside the Luton and Beds area and already in receipt of a grant from the Trust, they can approach trust direct for emergency funding;
  4. If they have no current grant and are from outside Luton & Beds, they can apply for emergency funding through the normal channels.


Find out more.


The Schroder Charity Trust  supports education & young people, health, communities, environment & conservation, heritage, arts and culture, international development and the Armed Forces. Their grant making policy has been amended in the light of COVID-19:

  • Applicants with pending applications submitted before COVID-19 can update their outstanding application with a brief explanation of the impact on their charity, how their charity is responding to that impact; and how a grant from the Schroder Charity Trust will help with that response.
  • New applications are being accepted currently and a question specifically relating to the impact of COVID-19 on he charity and its beneficiaries has been included. Applications will be reviewed in June and results notified by end June.

Find out more.


Made in Hackney 

Made in Hackney (MIH) started as a plant based community cooking school, but is now delivering free food to families in Hackney impacted by the Covid-19 crisis. They have raised over £60,000 from crowd fundraising and charity supporters that will enable them to provide free food to Hackney residents for 8 weeks. The food parcels are delivered by bicycle between 12noon and 6pm on weekdays. Their website provides advice on how to set up your own Covid-19 Feeding Programme, allows individuals to refer themselves or another to receive food, and has information on other Hackney Covid-19 support services.

Made in Hackney’s work pre-Covid was already having a massive impact on the local community, with 87% of people who attended their cooking classes reporting that they now ate less processed food and 89% of people had learned about organic food and where to buy it. Additionally, 91% of attendees said that the classes had helped them feel more connected to their community, and 97% of volunteers had said that volunteering with MIH had improved their overall mood.

It’s wonderful seeing charities being so fluid and adaptable in such challenging circumstances. Made in Hackey has managed to utilise their skills and resources to provide a lifeline for hundreds of families in their community during this international crisis. You can follow their inspirational work on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.

Friday 3 April

Sutton Coldfield Charitable Trust

The Charitable Trust is working in partnership with Royal Sutton Town Council & Age Concern Birmingham to support voluntary, community & faith groups across SC. The partnership has created a dedicated website which brings together all kinds of accurate, reliable information relevant on CV-19 for local organisations delivering help and for residents, and the charitable trust is welcoming funding applications from not-for-profit groups. Full info here.


BWB free webinar on Tuesday 7 April

Whilst not funding, this is free help relating to any legal questions about furloughing emerging from charities across the sector. This free webinar will explore the latest updates to the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme and will be followed by a Q&A (if you can’t make the date, register anyway and the session will be available afterwards for you). Register here.


Clothworkers’ Emergency Capital Programme (CECP)

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. Priority will be given to organisations supporting vulnerable and ‘at risk’ groups within their normal program areas this period.

Please note that this programme is not open to charities whose beneficiaries are based in London. Clothworkers will be announcing separate initiatives for London charities over the coming days. 

They aim to make quick decisions on applications. However, if they receive a large volume of applications it may take up to two weeks for a decision to reach you.

Key features of the fund:

  • Applications are only open to charities whose beneficiaries are not based in London
  • They will award capital grants of up to £5,000 (but will not award grants equal to more than 50% of your annual income)
  • They aim to communicate a decision within one week (but it may take up to two weeks)
  • Capital projects that are planned as part of your organisation’s ordinary course of business are not eligible; for these you may wish to review the What We Fund page for our Open Grants Programmes

Key organisational eligibility:

  • Income of less than £2 million per annum
  • Work of the applicant organisation must fall within Clothworkers’ nine programme areas
  • They do not support organisations that promote a particular religion or that only provide services to people of a particular religion

You must demonstrate your not-for-profit status in the application form and your accounts. Clothworkers fund the following types of charitable and not-for-profit organisations:

  • Charities registered with the Charity Commission including Community Interest Organisations (CIO)
  • Community Interest Companies (limited by guarantee without share capital)
  • ‘Exempt Charities’ (in which case we require details of your principal regulator and/or evidence of HMRC exemption)
  • Special Schools

For full details, click here.

Thursday 2 April

Sport England launch £195m Coronavirus funding support package

Sport England are making up to £195 million of funding available to help the sport and physical activity sector through the ongoing coronavirus (Covid-19) crisis.

The package, which is a combination of National Lottery and government funding, is made up of the following:

  • Open now: £20 million Community Emergency Fund, which will be opened immediately for clubs and community organisations to bid into. Grants between £300 and £10,000 are available
  • £5 million pot for existing partners to bid into if they’re facing specific financial difficulty
  • An additional £55 million to support our sector during an ongoing period of restrictions, to fund new and innovative ways to keep people active and, when the period of restrictions is over, to help organisations get back to business and adjust to a different environment
  • £115 million rollover of current funding into 2021/22 to give long term certainty to over 100 well established partners who play a vital role in the delivery of sport and physical activity in England.

Alongside this, they’ve also agreed to consider requests to release six months of the coming year’s funding (50% of awards) to their partners, meaning additional funding will be available sooner.

The package follows their recent decision to offer major flexibilities to those who currently receive funding – including the ability to change timings, key performance indicators, targets and conditions, and redirect money to new activity in response to coronavirus.

Find out more and apply here:


National Lottery Heritage Fund launches £50m emergency fund to support the heritage sector due to the Coronavirus outbreak.

The £50m fund will be available for grants of between £3,000 and £50,000.

It is available to organisations across the full breadth of heritage, including historic sites, industrial and maritime heritage, museums, libraries and archives, parks and gardens, landscapes and nature.

Organisations which have received funding in the past and are either a current grantee, or still under contract following a previous grant, can apply.

Priority will be given where:

  • there is limited or no access to other sources of support
  • where heritage is most at risk
  • where an organisation is at risk of severe financial crisis due to COVID-19

Find out more here

Tuesday 31 March

New £500 million Economic Resilience Fund for Wales

The Welsh First Minister Mark Drakeford has announced a new £500m fund to support businesses and charities experiencing a sharp drop in trading as a result of the coronavirus (COVID19) pandemic. The Fund aims to plug gaps in the support schemes already announced by the UK Government, and will provide a mix of loans at favourable interest rates and grants to support organisations’ cash flow.


Monday 30 March updates

Charities Aid Foundation launches Coronavirus Emergency Fund

CAF has launched a £5m fund to help smaller charitable organisations in the UK affected by the impact of COVID19. Grants of up to £10,000 are available. This is intended as a rapid response fund; CAF aim to make payments to selected organisations within 14 days. There is an online application form where applicants can register and complete their application.

National Lottery Community Fund adapts approach to respond to COVID19

The NLCF is changing its approach to help grantees and applicants . All funding decisions for the next six months (up to £300m of National Lottery funding) will be devoted to addressing needs related to the current crisis. NLCF will prioritise activities specifically geared to supporting communities through the crisis and to help organisations overcome liquidity issues, by delivering faster payments for existing grant holders and applicants.

Emergency funding for organisations

Third Sector Resilience Fund – Scotland

The Third Sector Resilience Fund (TSRF) is a £20m emergency fund for charities, community groups, social enterprises and voluntary organisations working in Scotland. The fund will support organisations that already deliver services and products but find themselves in financial difficulties directly as a result of the coronavirus pandemic. The primary intention of the fund is to help third sector organisations to stabilise and manage cash flows over this difficult period.

Steve Morgan Foundation – Covid-19 Emergency Fund

The fund will provide up to £1 million of funding per week for an initial 12 week period. It is open to charities and not-for-profit companies in the foundation’s catchment area (North Wales, Merseyside, Cheshire and North Shropshire) and will help with the costs of emergency services to help people affected with the virus. It will also help charities experiencing a loss of fundraising revenue to stay in business.

Arts Council England

The Arts Council is making £160 million of emergency funding available to ensure organisations and individuals working in the cultural sector are protected during the Coronavirus crisis. The council has also changed the funding requirements for individuals and organisations currently in receipt of its funding.

National Emergencies Trust Coronavirus Appeal

The appeal has now raised almost £12m from donations by the public, companies and other charities. The trust will work with community foundations to distribute funds to local charities supporting people affected by the outbreak.

London Community Response Fund

The fund, which will be coordinated by London Funders, will be available to organisations facing immediate financial pressures and uncertainty because of the Covid-19 outbreak. The fund now stands at over £5 million, with further funders expected to announce their contributions in the coming days.


The fund is backed by several of Neighbourly’s partner businesses, such as M&S, Lidl, Aldi and Coca-Cola, who have collectively contributed £500,000 and 500 volunteer days available to organisations in need. Currently, only existing Neighbourly charities and community groups can apply for funding. Eligible organisations can apply for micro-grants of up to £400 for ‘good causes that are helping communities affected by the new coronavirus outbreak’.

Forever Manchester Community Support Fund

Forever Manchester has launched a Community Support Fund for grassroot community groups that are responding to the impact of Covid-19 by helping those most affected. Awards of up to £1,000 are available.

Salford Crisis Fund

The Salford Crisis Fund is a responsive fund offering VCSE organisations grants of up to £500 to help address immediate need arising from the coronavirus crisis.

Community Foundations

Community Foundations will be distributing funds from the National Emergencies Trust and are in the process of setting up emergency response funds. Check your local Community Foundation’s website for further information.

Responses from major funders

National Lottery Community Fund

The fund has assured recent grant-holders that it will be flexible, in terms of accommodating changes to any timelines and reporting deadlines, accommodating changes to activity in response to the current climate and critical needs. Any changes made to projects can be reconciled at a later date. The fund also stresses that it ‘will support you and your teams through this crisis’ by continuing to pay staff salary, to enable an organisation to support members of staff who are sick, have caring responsibilities or need to self-isolate.

Garfield Weston Foundation

The foundation is in process of rearranging its pipeline to ensure that priority is given to activities providing immediate relief for vulnerable people and those experiencing hardship as a result of the pandemic. It has provided ‘immediate and simple guidance’ to charities wanting to alter the terms of their grant and is offering flexibility around timescales and reporting. If your organisation has a pending application submitted prior to 20th March 2020, the foundation will be in touch by email to confirm that the proposal still reflects your organisation’s current needs. Any amendments should be communicated to the foundation by 6th April.

The Esmée Fairbairn Foundation

The foundation promises to continue to support its beneficiaries through this uncertain time with a flexible approach to funding. Grant holders are encouraged to contact their grant manager if they would like to move payment or reporting dates, enquire about grants plus support and emergency top-up grants.

Comic Relief

Comic relief is committed to helping its beneficiaries through this crisis, by allowing its funded partners to adapt their activities, review timeframes and/or re-budget remaining funds. Grant-holders are advised to get in touch with their contact person to discuss how the pandemic is affecting their work and their team. The charity has also pledged that part of the funds raised through Sport Relief 2020 will be donated to organisations on the frontline of the response to the virus, working with some of the most vulnerable people likely to be affected.

Children in Need

The charity states they wish to be as helpful as possible during the coming weeks and understand there will be some disruption to activities. Communities, services or organisations receiving grants from Children in Need that have been affected by coronavirus can contact the organisation to discuss moving their reporting deadlines if they are struggling to meet them to agree a more realistic time. In addition, if grant recipients are unable to achieve the agreed outcomes they should discuss this with Children in Need to adapt their activities. The charity will be reasonable if funding needs to be moved between budget headings to ensure work can continue.

The Covid-19 FAQ section on the Children in Need website answers a number of specific questions grant recipients may have about the current situation.

The Sainsburys Family Trusts

The Sainsburys Family Trusts have given assurance to the organisations and projects that they fund that they will continue to receive support and that the funding is flexible and intended to help organisations deal with challenges.

The trust has signed the joint statement of support co-ordinated by London Funders. Organisations that are receiving funding can contact the trust by phone or email to discuss moving payments or reporting dates, flexing the timeframes for the delivery of outcomes or adapting activities if this could be helpful. As the office is working from home, there may be a small delay in response.

Lloyds Bank Foundation for England and Wales

The foundation says it wants to make sure it supports its charities during this time in any way they can so work can be continued without any additional barriers.

Organisations may change the focus of their grant in order to respond to the impact of the coronavirus crisis on their service users, the Lloyds Bank foundation will support this. Those receiving core funding may use it in anyway needed to deliver services. Those receiving project funding should discuss with the foundation about using their funding to support their wider service users. Payments will not be withheld if outcomes for the year have not been met due to disruption from coronavirus. The foundation has said that in exceptional circumstances, if an annual payment is due but the monitoring report cannot be completed due to the disruption, the payment will still be released.

Requests to amend grant payments so that 50% of the total grant can be received in one year will be considered. Applications for funding can still be made through the website. Enhance support will be delivered through Skype or Zoom and could be provided on an urgent basis.

Organisations that have questions or concerns should contact their Foundation Manager or if they’re not sure who that is, contact the foundation’s team on 0370 411 1223 or As the office will be shut, there may be some delays in communication but all requests will be answered as soon as possible.

Other resources

Coronavirus funders list

A list of resources and emergency funding provided by Ian McLintock, founder of the Charity Excellence Framework. Updated regularly.

Good Finance Covid-19 Resource Hub

Tools, resources and information for social enterprises and charities navigating Covid-19.

Project Everyone

A global virtual summit on 2nd April supporting charities through Covid-19.

SCVO Coronavirus Third Sector Information Hub

Resources and information (including funding) for charities, community groups, social enterprises and voluntary organisations in Scotland.