Just need a small amount of money for a community project? Here’s a good place to start looking.
As with any charitable project, it’s worth considering the funders that will fund a wide variety of projects.
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Town and Parish Councils
If your project is rooted in you local community it may be worth checking in with your town or parish council to see if they might consider funding it. Many have a specific budget and application process for community projects that directly benefit local residents and/or promote the town or village. Check the website for information about these schemes (here are some links for Wisbech, St Neots, Cambourne and St Ives). Smaller parish councils may not have a formal grants scheme; speak to the clerk or your local councillor for advice on whether they might consider funding a project.
District and City Councils
Cambridge City, Ely City, Hunts District, Fenland District, East Cambs District and South Cambs District councils all run small grant schemes for local community projects. Speak to your local councillor for advice on how best to present your application.
Social housing providers
Social housing providers are charitable organisations that provide homes for rent at affordable prices. Most run grant schemes for projects that will benefit their tenants. Applicants don’t necessarily need to be tenants, as long as (some of) the beneficiaries are. Here are some links for Clarion, bpha and Sanctuary Housing, all of which have properties in Cambridgeshire and run a formal grants scheme.
CPSL Mind: Good Life Fund
Cambridgeshire, Peterborough and South Lincolnshire Mind (CPSL Mind) is offering £500 grants to help set up groups that connect people and promote wellbeing. Suggestions include book clubs, craft classes and activities that encourage people to learn new skills. The simple application process asks for at least four people who are willing to volunteer their time but does not require groups to be constituted.
Arnold Clark Community Fund
Charities, community groups and sports teams can apply for up to £1,000 to help them through the COVID-19 pandemic. 500 grants will be awarded per month from March to May 2021.
Waitrose and John Lewis
Every month, each Waitrose store donates a share of £1,000 (£500 in convenience shops, £3,000 per quarter in John Lewis department stores) between three causes. These could be for local causes like school equipment upgrades, social welfare carers, aged care or health and wellbeing charity activities. Contact your local Waitrose store directly or fill in the form on the John Lewis website.
Asda’s Green Token Giving scheme will return in summer 2021 as an online vote, and nominations are now open. Three local, grassroots community projects are selected per Asda store per month. The one with the most votes received £500, with the other to receiving £200.
Meanwhile, ASDA Foundation’s Supporting Communities Grant offers £250 to £750 worth of in-store goods to charities, CICs and community groups that meet local needs along the themes of food, hygiene or wellbeing. Applications are via your local store’s Community Champion.
Arm Cambridge Fund
Small grants to support charitable projects across Cambridgeshire, particularly projects focused on Community Development and Engagement, Children Young People and Families and Adults Facing Life Crisis.
Bright Futures Fund
Grants for projects that support young people facing difficulty or disadvantage because they are not in employment, education or training; young people who have offended or are considered to be at risk of offending; young people affected by bereavement and young carers.
Cambridgeshire Rural Fund
Grants of up to £5,000 for projects addressing issues in rural communities.
Cheffins Grassroots Endowed Fund
Small grants to local voluntary and community organisations working to help people in need in or around Cambridge, Ely, Newmarket, Haverhill or Saffron Walden.
The D and J Lloyd Community First Fund
Grants to support voluntary and community groups working in Cambridgeshire along four themes:
- Provide support and relief
- Promote the arts
- Protect the environment
- Promote learning
Marshall Community Fund
Grants to support small, local voluntary and community groups and organisations that are undertaking charitable work in Cambridgeshire. There is a special interest in supporting groups based around Cambridge airport.
Mills and Reeve Cambridge Grassroots Endowed Fund
Small grants to support small, local voluntary and community organisations in Cambridgeshire that help people who face disadvantage, and that engage and support local people to build stronger, healthier, inclusive and sustainable communities.
Olive and Jesse Palmer Fund
Grants of £1,000 to £3,000 for Peterborough-based groups working to help local young people with a learning disability to access positive activities and opportunities to develop their full potential.
Magic Little Grants
Funded by People’s Postcode Lottery, grants of up to £500 are available for small local charities and community groups for projects on a range of themes including mental wellbeing, participation in the arts and tackling poverty, equality and climate change. Applications will be accepted until 31 October 2021.
Music for All – Community Project Funding
Grants of up to £2,000 are available to community groups and schools that aim to bring musical projects to their local communities. Eligible costs include musical instrument costs, associated equipment or teaching costs.
Grants of £200 to £400 for individuals and organisations for projects that support live and performance arts, and arts education. This fund is currently on hold due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Grants from £250 to £3,000 are available to UK voluntary sector organisations (not individuals or schools) for projects that promote, maintain, improve and advance the education of the public in the arts generally and, in particular, the fine arts and music. Most grants are between £500 and £1,000.
Alec Dickson Trust
Grants of up to £500 for small groups of young people (under 30 years) who want to use volunteering or community service to make a positive change in their community. This fund is expected to reopen in May 2021.
D’Oyly Carte Charitable Trust
Grants from £500 to £6,000 for UK registered charities delivering projects on three themes: the advancement of the arts, health and medical welfare, and environmental protection or improvement.
Woodroffe Benton Foundation
Grants of £500 to £2,500 for UK registered charities for projects that provide care for the sick and elderly, conserve and improve the environment, and help those in need as a result of disaster or by reason of social and economic circumstances.
Barchester’s Charitable Foundation
Grants from £100 to £5,000 for individuals, small community groups and small local charities supporting people aged 65+ and adults (18+) with a physical disability or mental health problems. Its focus is about connecting or re-connecting people with others in their local community, and we support applications that combat loneliness and enable people to be active and engaged.