Funding during COVID-19

New funding opportunities are opening up daily. Some funders are simplifying their processes for new applicants and providing flexibility for existing grantees. So that you can keep pace, we have curated the key resources you will need.

Our top tips for your organisation are:

Bucks Funding Search

Register for free to access full details of available funding.  This includes both coronavirus-specific funds as well as ongoing as more general funds.

Top tips:

  • You must enter the type of organisation, whether a registered charity or CIO, a Community Interest Company (CIC) or a voluntary and community group. All other search fields are optional.
  • Try a keyword search using ‘covid’ or ‘coronavirus’.
  • Once you have carried out a search, use ‘Filter by status’ to see only funds that are open for applications.
  • Save the search and set up an e-mail alert so that you get updates when funds are changed or new funds meeting your search criteria are added.
  • There’s a helpful Jargonbuster to help you understand funderspeak!
  • Check the “News” tab for new announcements and funds updated daily.
  • For more details on how to get the best out of the database check out the User Guide and the ‘Help & advice’ tab
  • You’ll find more useful information under the “Help” tab.

Top tips on making a funding application

Although funders are looking to be supportive and flexible during this period, remember the basics still apply to making a strong application:

  • Make sure that your organisation and project are eligible – most funders will have published eligibility criteria, sometimes called ‘what we won’t fund’
  • Understand what the funder is looking to achieve with their funding – is your project a good fit?
  • Provide the evidence of why your project is needed and the difference that it will make to your beneficiaries
  • Check the deadlines for making an application, how to submit an application and what additional information you will need to supply
  • For more help with making a good application

Latest COVID-19 funds

A range of new funds have been launched to help organisations deal with the crisis, as well as existing funds which have been refocused.

The Government’s new Coronavirus Community Support Fund is being managed by the National Community Lottery, who are distributing this alongside National Lottery funding, through a single application (details below).

A selection of the latest funds is shown below.

Charity Excellence Framework is collating a national list of Coronavirus-specific funding. To access the list in a database register on the Charity Excellence Framework website, which also contains other resources and toolkits.

New fund announcements are also included in the “News” tab of the Bucks Funding Search database (top tip: you can set up an e-mail alert to get updates when new funds meeting your search criteria are added.)

Selection of the latest funds:


Supporting the vulnerable


Other sectors

  • Youth Endowment Fund: grants (minimum £25,000) are available to organisations that work to support children (aged 10-14) who are at risk of being drawn into crime and violence (deadline 3 June)
  • Sport England Community Emergency Fund: grants up to £10,000 for sports organisations (paused 14th May)
  • ECB emergency support: Cricket clubs affiliated to Bucks Cricket Board able to apply for loans, and in some cases grants
  • Heritage Emergency Fundgrants of £3,000 to £50,000 to safeguard heritage sites and organisations including historic sites, industrial and maritime heritage, museums, libraries and archives, parks and gardens, landscapes and nature (deadline: 30 June 2020)
  • COVID-19 Response Grants (Clinks):  grants usually up to £5,000 for organisations under £500,000 providing, or previously providing, services in the criminal justice system

Government support

£750 million coronavirus funding for frontline charities
On 8th April the Chancellor announced a £750m package to provide financial support to charities during the coronavirus pandemic. We are still waiting to hear the details. Here’s what we know so far:

  • A total of £750 million will be made available for frontline charities across the UK.
  • Out this pot, £360 million will go to charities directly, including St John’s Ambulance, Citizens Advice, hospices and organisations helping victims of domestic abuse.
  • £370 million of the funding has been designated for smaller charities working with vulnerable people. This will be distributed through the National Lottery Community Fund.
  • The Government will match donations to the National Emergencies Trust as part of the BBC’s Big Night In fundraiser later this month, pledging a minimum of £20 million.When further details are available, we will advise on eligibility and the application process.

Coronavirus Job Retention scheme

The Government scheme applies to all UK employers with a PAYE scheme (including charities and Community Interest Companies) to continue paying part of their employees’ salary for those that would otherwise have been laid off during this crisis. The grant from HMRC covers wages equal to the lower of 80% of the employee’s regular salary or £2,500 per month, plus the associated employer NI and pension (minimum automatic enrolment) contributions.

For full details of the scheme see the Government guidance. Additional information is available from ACAS and CIPD.

For advice tailored to the voluntary sector, the Charity Finance Group has published a thorough Q & A to help charities better understand how the furlough scheme operates.

Financial support for businesses during coronavirus (Covid-19)

The Government has introduced a package of measures to assist businesses, some of which may also be applicable to charities. See the guidance here and the Charity Tax group’s Coronavirus information hub. You can also use the government’s business support finder tool.

The Coronavirus Statutory Sick Pay Rebate Scheme will repay employers the current rate of SSP that they pay to current or former employees for periods of sickness starting on or after 13 March 2020.

The Association of Education Business Professionals has produced a useful checklist which you can use to review your eligibility for Government-funded business support during the COVID-19 pandemic.

While not specifically for the voluntary sector, the checklist covers the following areas which may be applicable to your organisation:

  • Income and employment support, including Job Retention Scheme
  • Business rates
  • Grants and finances
  • Taxation