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Funding opportunities for community projects & more


Funding for communities around the UK, to pilot housing ideas addressing injustices within criminal justice system, and more.

Funding for community initiatives in the Midlands

Tara Group has now opened public funding applications to The Noel Sweeney Foundation — a charitable trust set up to support local communities in the Midlands.

The Noel Sweeney Foundation aims to continue a legacy of generosity from Tara Group’s late founder Noel Sweeney.

Funding applications are now publicly available through The Noel Sweeney Foundation website and are open to local community initiatives, groups supporting young and/or disadvantaged people, charities and projects that support reducing homelessness.

Applicants can apply to access funding, support in fundraising, or request the company’s time to provide their skills through volunteering.

Harmony Energy Income Trust launches fund to support Farnham community

Harmony Energy Income Trust has launched a £5,000-a-year fund to support local community groups within a 5-mile radius of its Farnham Battery Energy Storage System (BESS) in Farnham, Surrey.

HEIT is inviting groups to apply to the Farnham Battery Community Fund via BizGive, for grants starting from £1,000 per project, that positively impact the local area within a 5-mile radius of Farnham. 

The closing date for applications is 7 August 2024, with decisions made on a bi-annual basis. For further details on the fund and how to apply, click here.

The Mason Trust launches Small Change grant

The Mason Trust charity has launched its Small Change grant: a new initiative to help young people aged 16-25 in Norfolk and Suffolk facing financial barriers in their path to education or training or in taking the next step in their career development.

Individuals can apply for a small grant – sums of up to £45 – to overcome immediate financial barriers to their personal progress.  These may include training, health and safety courses, one-off travel costs, for example, to attend an interview or a training course, or specific pieces of equipment (excluding laptops/mobiles).  The expenses must be related to obtaining employment, remaining in employment or training necessary to further the applicant’s career. 

The Mason Trust, has a long history in helping young people in Norfolk and Suffolk achieve their educational potential, pursue their aspirations and control their own future. The ‘Small Change’ grant will replace its previous ‘Grant Funding’ programme, which ran for more than 10 years and funded 6,000 young people throughout the region involved in a variety of inspirational projects. 

More information here.

ChannelPorts Limited open community fund with Kent Community Foundation

After supporting grass root charities for some time by making regular donations to Kent Community Foundation, Hythe-based ChannelPorts Limited has decided to set up their own philanthropic fund.

So far, it has donated over £65,000 to support the foundation’s grant making and is opening the
ChannelPorts Community Fund with a further donation of £38,000.

The new fund will award grants to small charities and community groups that operate within Kent Community Foundation’s five funding priorities: Children, Young People & Families, Vulnerable Adults, Elderly & Isolated, Employability Skills & Enterprise and Environment.

The ChannelPorts Community Fund will award average grants of £4,500 to small charities and relevant causes ‘where a modest sum of money can make a significant impact’. Awards will be made quarterly with the first grants expected to be made in October.

More information here.

Funding to pilot housing ideas addressing injustices within criminal justice system

Through the charity’s Call for New Ideas partnership programme, Commonweal is inviting not-for-profit organisations to apply for funding of between £5,000-10,000 to conduct a short-term feasibility study to evaluate a housing and support model tackling issues facing vulnerable individuals who have come into contact with the criminal justice system.

The feasibility study will determine if there is scope for the proposed model to operate as a property-based pilot project, which Commonweal would look to support by providing bespoke property for successful applicants to run their pilot over several years. The charity would support partners throughout the project development stage until the end of its life cycle, including sharing learnings through media and policy work, and project replication.

While Commonweal is only seeking submissions centered around the criminal justice system, it welcomes ideas that intersect across criminal justice and either migration, asylum and human trafficking or injustices facing young people or both. Then in 2024, the Call for New Ideas will reopen twice to focus on these other priority areas specifically.

Key info

Commonweal is searching for original ideas from not-for-profit organisations of all sizes and across all areas of the UK, but especially from Black, Asian, and Minority Ethnic (BAME)-led and BAME-focused organisations. Applications close at 5pm on Friday 29 September. Full information and an application form can be found here. Prospective applicants can also get in touch with Commonweal Housing to discuss potential ideas and ask any questions at ap***@co********.uk  

Wesleyan Foundation donates 500,000 breakfasts to children across the UK – with more grants available

The Wesleyan Foundation has reached the milestone of funding over half a million breakfasts for hungry schoolchildren through the charity Magic Breakfast. Wesleyan has donated £145,500 to Magic Breakfast since 2019, including £53,000 so far this year.

In 2017 Wesleyan launched the Wesleyan Foundation as part of its commitment to supporting great causes that are important to their members and the communities in which they live and work. The Foundation has since donated over £5mn and supported more than 440,000 people across 500 different UK charities, community groups and social enterprises. Grants are available for projects on education, health, innovation and social development.

This year, on top of its original community grants for charities earning under £500,000 a year, the Foundation has introduced five new grants that are open to charities with any income. Through each grant, it is supporting the UN Sustainable Development Goals, funding charities that work towards climate action, quality education, gender equality, health and wellbeing and reducing inequalities.

Two of these are currently open: the Flexible Grant: Open 1 January – 31 August, and the Mutuality Grant: Open 25 July – 10 September.

The funding is managed by Heart of England Community Foundation, working in conjunction with the UK Community Foundation network.

More information here.

Tesco introduces new community grant scheme

Tesco has introduced its new community grant scheme, Tesco Stronger Starts, which has the aim of giving children across the UK a stronger start in life.

In partnership with Groundwork UK, it is committing £5mn in grants to fund healthy food and activities for schools and children’s groups. The scheme is open to all schools, registered charities and not-for-profit organisations, with priority given to projects that provide food and support to young people.

Through Tesco Stronger Starts, over 5,000 schools and children’s groups will benefit from the funding this year, which will help set up everything from breakfast clubs to football clubs. People can help children in their area, by picking up their blue token at the till and dropping it into the Tesco Stronger Starts voting unit next time they shop with Tesco in-store. Projects can also be nominated online.

Funding for groups from Miller Homes’ Community Fund

St Francis Animal Welfare, based in Eastleigh, has been gifted £1,000 by Basingstoke-based Miller Homes Southern, through the housebuilder’s annual Community Fund.

St Francis were one of 177 groups to apply for funding via Miller Homes’ Community Fund, which was created by the developer to help support community groups as part of their ‘A Better Place’ initiative.

Groups can apply for a donation ranging between a minimum of £250 up to a maximum of £2,000 to help enhance the lives of individuals and the areas in which they live.

The fund focuses on causes that:

are linked to education

promote wellbeing

promote the environment

encourage participation in sport

Miller Homes has an annual budget of £10,000 within its Southern region to distribute among the applicants who are deemed the most deserving during each round of funding. The application process is open all-year-round via the Miller Homes website, with selected recipients granted funding twice a year.

Nominations open for the Conrad N. Hilton Humanitarian Prize

Nominations are open for the 2024 Conrad N. Hilton Humanitarian Prize, with a deadline of Wednesday 27 September.

At $2.5 million, the Conrad N. Hilton Humanitarian Prize is the world’s largest annual humanitarian award presented to a nonprofit organisation. It is presented to a nonprofit judged to have made extraordinary contributions toward alleviating human suffering, honouring the efforts of those who help others for the benefit and progress of humanity. Last year’s Prize was awarded to the Norwegian Refugee Council.

More information on eligibility and nominations is available here.

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