Northern Ireland COVID-19 Charities Fund Opens New Round

Tuesday, 4 August, 2020

The COVID-19 Charities Fund is provided by the Northern Ireland Department for Communities and administered on behalf of the Department by The National Lottery Community Fund.

The funding is aimed at charities who have found themselves in financial difficulties due to the COVID-19 outbreak, having exhausted all other avenues of support including internal reserves, other measures such as the Job Retention Scheme and all available hardship funds.

A total of £15.5 million will be awarded in grants. One-off grants of up to £75,000 are available. The level of funding awarded will be based on a proportionate assessment of a charity’s short-term financial need.

The grants are to be used to cover a shortfall of unavoidable costs from 1 April to 30 September 2020.

To be eligible for funding charities must:

  • Have been formed prior to 31 March 2020 and be a lawfully operating charity as defined by the Charities Act (NI) 2008.
  • Have at least two unrelated people on their board or committee.
  • Have a UK bank or building society account in the legal name of the charity with at least two unrelated people who can manage the account.
  • Have been financially stable prior to the impact of COVID-19, with The National Lottery Community Fund having no concerns regarding fraud or financial mismanagement.
  • Be able to demonstrate that their fundraising or trading income has reduced due to the impact of COVID-19 and they have unavoidable costs to cover up to 30 September 2020.
  • Have unavoidable costs that cannot be covered by existing grants or public funding and therefore be at imminent risk.

Social enterprises can apply as long as they are a local charity and meet the other eligibility criteria.

The deadline for applications is 21 August 2020 (4pm).

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