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Community grants and resources

Funding for voluntary and community organisations

The council recognises the incredible contribution made by local Voluntary and Community Sector organisations (VCS).

We know that demand on local VCS organisations is high, leading to pressure on both finances and staff resource.

The Mayor’s Community Grant Programme is live. Applications will be open till midday Monday 5 June.

The council is helping VCS organisations with free access to volunteers through our volunteering hub with Volunteer Centre Tower Hamlets.

Financial support is also available through local, regional, and national grant schemes, which can help organisations in Tower Hamlets with unexpected costs, loss of income or new projects. This page outlines some of the funding and grant opportunities available for VCS organisations in Tower Hamlets.

Please contact Tower Hamlets Council for Voluntary Service (THCVS) for any advice and support.

THCVS is offering its member organisations free half hour funding searches to help them to identify suitable funders to apply to for grant funding.

For further enquiries on the range of support, please email them on info@thcvs.org.uk.

Innovation Fund

Our Tower Hamlets is back with the opportunity for you to pitch for up to £10,000 from the council to help crowdfund your project.

Join programme partners Spacehive for a virtual workshop on Wednesday 24 May at 12pm to find out how you can pitch for the funding and what community-led projects the Council are looking to back.

Register on Eventbrite 

If you aren't able to attend the workshop, Spacehive are also hosting a project clinic on Thursday 8 June at 10am. You will go through the steps of launching your crowdfunding campaign and pitching.

Register for the project clinic.

If you have any questions, please email support@spacehive.com and the Spacehive team will be able to help. The deadline for pitches is Wednesday 28 June.


Canary Wharf Group

Community Grants Programme

Grants of £500 and £10,000 is available

The Community Grants programme aims to support local community initiatives. The programme is centred around three key themes:

  • Education- supporting children and young people to fulfil their educational potential through curricular and extra- curricular support and training to boost confidence and career aspirations
  • Skills and Employment- delivering skills and employment opportunities for local people, those who are not in Education, Employment or Training (NEET) or long term unemployed,
  • Wellbeing and Biodiversity- programmes creating a healthier community through interventions related to physical activity, mental health and those addressing the impact of poverty, this includes programmes that provide more green spaces and access to water which will increase the area’s biodiversity.

The grants programme is for not-for-profit organisations, operating and benefitting the residents in the borough.

Grants of £500 and £10,000 are available.

The grants programme will be open over four quarters. Deadlines are as follows:

  • Applications will open for Quarter 3 cycle on 1 May 2023 and close on 31 May 2023
  • Applications will open for Quarter 4 cycle on 1 August 2023 and close on 31 August 2023

NHS North East London

Social Prescribing Community Chest Pilot Fund- Tower Hamlets

Fund Priorities: The Social Prescribing Pilot Fund has been established by NHS North East London to pilot and test activities that can support people’s health and well-being.

Projects should be able to establish swiftly, prioritise referrals from social prescriber link workers and provide evaluation by September 2023.

Grant Amount: Grants of up to £5,000 are available to a single organisation; and grants of up to £10,000 for organisations applying as a partnership.

Read the guidelines for the fund.

To apply for a grant please download the application form.

The deadline is 12pm on Monday 22 May 2023.


Energy Bill Relief Scheme

Energy Bill Relief Scheme

Cutting energy bills for UK businesses, charities, and public sector organisations. The government has outlined plans to help cut energy bills for businesses.

The support scheme will see energy prices for non-domestic energy customers such as businesses, charities and public sector organisations cut- protecting them from rising energy costs.

The government will work with suppliers to reduce wholesale energy costs.


UK Community Fund Play

ChangeX has launched the £145,000 UK Community Play Fund, supported by the LEGO Foundation as part of its Build a World of Play campaign.

The fund aims to enable communities across the UK to start proven learning through play projects and empower community groups, parents, and caregivers to create more playful experiences for children.  Funding ranges from £500 to £4,700 per new project.

The deadline for application is ongoing

One Housing Community Fund

Do you run a community group or any small organisation that supports One Housing or Riverside residents?

One Housing have made £250,000 available in 2022/23 through their new Community Fund to help fund projects that promote opportunities and wellbeing and tackle poverty in our communities. If you’ve got an idea that could make a difference, they want to hear from you.

Apply for the One Housing Community Fund

The Deutche Bank Awards for Creative Entrepreneurs 

The 30th year of the Deutsche Bank Awards for Creative Entrepreneurs (DBACE) gets under way with applications open from Tuesday 31 January.

This could be your chance to secure up to £20,000 investment to start or grow your enterprise. This includes a membership to MeWe360's Incubator programme, including 12-months of business support with MeWe360 and Deutsche Bank's high calibre industry and business mentors. DBACE offers a range of fantastic resources to support you with your application.

Apply for the Deutsche Bank award

National Databank

The National Databank provides free mobile data, texts and calls to people in need via Good Things Foundation’s network of local community partners.

Think of it like a ‘food bank’ but for internet connectivity data. Community organisations can apply to access the databank, enabling them to provide data to people in their communities who need it.

Apply for National Databank free data

National Lottery Community Fund

National Lottery Awards for All England

A quick way to apply for smaller amounts of funding between £300 and £10,000.

They are supporting communities with the things that are important to them, including mitigating the impact of the cost-of-living crisis and supporting them as they seek to recover, rebuild and grow.

You can apply for funding to deliver a new or existing activity or to support your organisation to change and adapt to new and future challenges.

Area: England
Suitable for: Voluntary or community organisations
Funding size: £300 to £10,000, for up to one year
Application deadline: Ongoing. Apply at least 12 weeks before you want to start the activities or spend any of the money.

Hodge Foundation

This foundation gives grants to charities that focus on welfare, education, medical support and religious initiatives.

UK Youth D

The cost-of-living crisis has been tough on young people. The UK Youth Fund will provide funding to youth organisations to make sure they can continue their important work. Applications will remain open until funding has been used.

The Leathersellers' Company small grants programme 

Small Grants Programme

This is a fast-track application process for small unrestricted one-off grants (up to a maximum of £5,000).

Applications are now open. Applications will close one week before each committee date, or when 45 applications have been received.

Apply for the Leathersellers' Company Small Grants Programme

National Lottery Community Fund

Climate Action Fund

The National Lottery Community, Climate Action Fund aims to help communities across the UK to address climate change.

The Community fund is looking for projects that focus on the link between nature and climate.  The fund aims to bring projects and other important social and economic benefits, like the creation of strong, resilient, and healthy communities or the development of “green” skills and jobs.

Grants between £300,000 and £500,000 is available, grants of £50,000 to £150,000 over 12 to 18 months is also available to

  • Constituted group or club
  • Voluntary or community organisation
  • Charitable Incorporated Organisation (CIO)
  • Scottish Charitable Incorporated Organisation (SCIO)
  • Community Interest Company (CIC)

The deadline for applications is ongoing

National Lottery Community Fund

Reaching Communities – Large grants over £10,000 (grants are available for up to five years) are available to voluntary and community organisations in England for projects that make positive changes in their communities. The aim of the programme is to support communities to thrive by funding projects that:

  • build strong relationships in and across communities.
  • improve the places and spaces that matter to communities.
  • help more people to reach their potential, by supporting them at the earliest possible stage.

The deadline for applications is ongoing.

Partnerships – Grants of at least £10,000 are available to voluntary and community organisations in England which work together with a shared set of goals and values to help their community thrive.

The aim of the programme is to encourage organisations to work in partnership to help their communities thrive by focusing on the bigger picture, rather than just what their organisation can do on its own. The funding can support different types of partnership, including:

  • cross-sector partnerships
  • local place-based collaboration
  • local and national organisations working together around a particular theme

The deadline for applications is ongoing.

Smallwood Trust

The Women’s Urgent Support Fund is supported by over £3.2 million from The National Lottery Community Fund, the largest funder of community activity in the UK. Thanks to National Lottery players, £3 million will be awarded in grants to 60 small, local community organisations led by and serving women.

Round 1 is now open and will be distributing £1 million

  • Protecting essential services for women most impacted by poverty and the cost-of-living-crisis
  • Frontline services led by, for and/or serving women with an income of less than £1 million can apply
  • Deadline: 5pm, 19 May
  • The application process is open NOW

Visit Smallwood Trust website to download an application form and guidance notes. Completed applications and questions should be emailed to grants@smallwoodtrust.org.uk

Grants between £15,000 and £60,000 over three years available.


Community Grants

Nationwide is offering grants of up to £50,000 to charity organisations with solutions to the housing crisis. Proposed projects should one of Nationwide’s following three aims:

  • Helping people into a home
  • Preventing people from losing their home
  • Supporting people to thrive at home

The deadline for applications is when a set number of applications have been received.

Co-operative ReBoost Fund and Shares Booster Programme

Community businesses in disadvantaged and under-represented communities in England that want to issue shares to their community can apply for financial support through the Community Shares ReBoost fund; and the Community Shares Booster Programme.

Both programmes provide development grants to prepare a community share offer as well as match equity investment. The funding is delivered in partnership by Co-operatives UK, Locality, Plunkett Foundation, and Co-operative and Community Finance.

It is funded by Power to Change, Access to Foundation for Social Investment and the Architectural Heritage Fund.

The deadline for applications is ongoing.

The Foyle Foundation

Small Grants Scheme – support for smaller grass roots and local charities, with a turnover of less than £150,000 per annum during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Organisations which are currently delivering services to the young, vulnerable, elderly, disadvantaged or the general community, either directly or through online support can apply for grants of between £1,000 and £10,000.

This can be used for core costs or essential equipment to enable ongoing service provision, homeworking, or delivery of online digital services to charities that can show financial sustainability.

The deadline for applications is ongoing.

Sport England

Small Grants Programme

Key information

  • Awards of £300-£15,000 are available to not-for-profit organisations.
  • Multiple applications can be submitted, but organisations can only have awards of up to £15,000 in any 12-month period.
  • Awards are to help inactive and less active people become more active.
  • Our priority is to support projects working with people living in areas of disadvantage as defined by the Indices of Multiple Deprivation areas 1 to 3.
  • Applications should explain why there's a need for the project and how end users have been involved in developing the project.
  • Applications should consider how the project adds value to services currently available in your local community, and work collaboratively with other groups to maximise the impact of the project.

The closing date for applications is 30 June 2023.

People's Postcode Lottery

People's Postcode Lottery

The funding rounds for Postcode Society Trust 2023 will open at:

- 10am on the 1 June for a minimum of 24hrs
- 10am on the 4th September for a minimum of 24hrs

Application forms will go live at the above dates and times and must be started and submitted within the submission window.

In the meantime, a copy of the application questions can be downloaded from their website in order to help you prepare your submission. 

If you have any questions, please contact them at info@postcodesocietytrust.org.uk

Funds are focused on charities and good causes in south east of England. 

BBC Children in Need

Core Costs

Core Costs support essential organisational and administrative spending. These are the key expenses required to keep an organisation running. These might include:

  • Management and administration
  • HR and payroll
  • General office expenses
  • Accountancy and audit
  • Communications and outreach
  • Monitoring, evaluation, and learning
  • Governance, regulatory and compliance costs

Applicants to this programme can apply for grants for up to three years, awarded as restricted funding. Applications over £15,000 per year from organisations who have registered with the appropriate regulatory body will be considered. These include the Charity Commission for England and Wales, Northern Ireland and the Scottish Charity Register.

Companies Limited by Guarantee registered through Companies House will also be considered.

The deadline for application is ongoing

All Churches Trust

Hope Beyond Fund grants of up to £50,000 to support churches and Christian charities to meet changing needs within their communities, helping them and the communities they support to adapt to the challenges and opportunities presented by the Coronavirus pandemic.

In addition to funding capital projects, such as adaptation of buildings and the purchase of equipment, the programme will also fund project-related salaries such as training of staff and/or volunteers.

The deadline for applications is ongoing

AB Charitable Trust (ABCT)

Migrants and Refugees

AB Charitable Trust is offering core and project funding to organisations focussing on:

  • Delivering services directly targeting migrant communities and people who are refugees or seeking asylum,
  • Influence policy and/or counter negative narrative,
  • Strengthen the voluntary sector and support organisations delivering work in this area.

Application deadlines for 2023

  • 28 July 2023
  • Decisions in October 2023

Human Rights, Particularly Access to Justice

Human Rights, Particularly Access to Justice

AB Charitable Trust is also offering organisations that work in one of ABCT’s priority areas. Organisations must be a registered UK charity, delivering work in the UK with an annual income between £150,000 to £1.5million.

The organisation also needs to have been operating for at least a year and be able to provide evidence.  The Trust is looking to fund organisations core or project funding:

  • That provide specialist legal advice and representation,
  • Work to influence law, policy and practice through e.g. strategic litigation or public law challenges,
  • Strengthen the sector and supports organisations delivering work in the area,
  • Deliver activities to protect the principles of human rights and the rule of law, including campaigning, advocacy, and narrative change work.

Both core (unrestricted grants) and project (restricted grants) funding are available of £10,000 to £20,000

Deadline for applications are:

  • 30 July 2023 for decisions in October 2023

The Connect Fund

Four Programmes – The Connect Fund has four programme areas. These include

  • Equality, Diversity and Inclusion
  • Post Covid-19 Recovery
  • Peer Networks and
  • Challenge Funds.

The funding strands for each area have been developed to align with Access’ strategic objectives and to respond to the current needs of the social investment market. The average grant size varies across the different funding strands.

The deadline for applications is ongoing.

BlueSpark Foundation

Educational development

BlueSpark Foundation aims to support the education and the development of children and young people by providing grants for educational, cultural sporting and other projects.

BlueSpark aim to support projects by many different organisations that enhance self-confidence, team working skills and future employability of children and young people.

The deadline is on a rolling basis at approximately eight week intervals

City Bridge Trust

Stepping Stones Fund is a grant-making, social investment readiness facility for charitable organisations in London, delivered in partnership with UBS.

It aims to provide grants to pilot new ways of creating improved social outcomes. The maximum grant amount can be up to £50,000.

Deadline for applications is ongoing.

City Bridge Trust

Small Grants for Green Projects is available for up to £10,000 per year, for a maximum of five years, for greening and growing projects which bring communities together and projects which enable disabled people and/or disadvantaged, older people to actively participate in wellbeing opportunities.

Deadline for application is ongoing.

Jack Petchey Foundation

Funding for Internship programmes for youth charities - Providing funding to Youth charities in London and Essex to hire young interns for a year.

Deadline for applications is ongoing

Merchant Taylor Company

Funding for organisations tackling disadvantage and supporting education - two streams within the Company’s Disadvantage strategy, which includes a Small Grants Scheme, are for community-based charities operating exclusively in the London boroughs of Hackney, Lewisham, Southwark and Tower Hamlets.

Charities applying for the above grants need to work with people who are in need on account of age, ill health, disability, financial hardship or through some other form of disadvantage to be eligible.

 Deadline for applications is ongoing

The Portal Trust (previously the Sir John Cass Foundation)

The Portal Trust (previously the Sir John Cass Foundation) – The aim of the Trust is to enable young people, particularly those from disadvantaged or low-income backgrounds, to experience life-enhancing educational opportunities.

There is no minimum or maximum grant amount that can be applied for. Sometimes projects are funded in their entirety while others require match funding.

Areas funded include widening access and participation in further and higher education, truancy, and prisoner education.

Applications can be made at any time and will be considered three times a year (usually in March, June, and October).

The Clothworkers' Foundation

Open Grant Programme – Grants to UK registered charities, CICs, and other registered UK not-for-profit organisations (including special schools). Grants are awarded towards capital projects defined as:

  • Buildings: purchase, construction, renovation, or refurbishment.
  • Fittings, Fixtures, and Equipment: this includes but is not limited to office equipment/furniture, sports/gym equipment, digital/audio visual equipment, garden equipment, specialist therapeutic (excluding medical) equipment. It does not include equipment for one-off use, or which will be given to service users for personal use on a permanent basis.
  • Vehicles: This includes a minibus, car, caravan, people-carrier, or 4X4. We are unlikely to fund the total cost of a new vehicle and do not provide grants towards vehicle leasing.

The deadline for applications is ongoing.

Screwfix Foundation

Screwfix grants

The Screwfix Foundation is passionate about making a difference to communities across the UK.  Screwfix Foundation aims to support projects that improve, repair and maintain homes and community facilities used by those in need throughout the UK.

Screwfix Foundation is offering grants of up to the region of £5,000, it is reviewed on a quarterly basis - the review dates are in March, June, September and December.

Registered charity or not for profit organisations can apply. The types of projects Screwfix supports include:

  • To improve energy efficient lighting and heating
  • Installation of new kitchen, bathroom, etc
  • Installation of a sensory room
  • General painting and decorating
  • Improving safety and security of a building. 

The deadline for applications is ongoing

Masonic Charitable Foundation

Funding to Support Vulnerable Older People – Local and national charities in England and Wales can apply for grants of between £500 - £15,000 for projects lasting up to three years that support vulnerable and disadvantaged people over 50. To be eligible the charity needs to have an annual income of below £500,000 per year.

The deadline for applications is ongoing.

The Wakeham Trust

The Wakeham Trust

The Wakeham Trust provides grants to help people rebuild their communities. They are particularly interested in neighbourhood projects, community arts projects, projects involving community service by young people, or projects set up by those who are socially excluded.

They favour small projects - often, but not always, start-ups and they try to break the vicious circle whereby you have to be established to get funding from major charities, but you have to get funding to get established.

Apply at TheWakehamTrust@icloud.com.

The deadline for applications is ongoing.

Wooden Spoon Charity 

Wooden Spoon Charity – Projects must fall within Wooden Spoons Vision Statement: the aim is to make a positive impact on the lives of children and young people through their commitment to quality charitable work.

The deadline for applications is ongoing.

The Percy Bilton Charity

The Percy Bilton Charity – Organisations assisting disadvantaged youth, people with disabilities and older people may apply for grants of between £500 and £5,000 available towards capital expenditure, such as furniture and equipment.

Social workers may apply on behalf of individuals who have a disability or mental health problem, or who are over 65. The grants will go towards purchasing basic furniture, equipment and clothing.

The deadline for applications is ongoing.

Alpkit Foundation

Alpkit Foundation – In response to the coronavirus, The Alpkit Foundation are prioritising funding to support projects that demonstrate an immediate impact on those affected by the crisis. Grants are available to grassroot organisations serving those affected by the outbreak.

Funding can provide support for activities which might include helping vulnerable and elderly people who are self-isolating, supporting the homeless, providing access to food, medicines or social care, supporting foodbanks, increasing the number of meals on wheels deliveries, and bringing exercise indoors.

The deadline for applications is ongoing.

Lloyds Bank Foundation 

Lloyds Bank FoundationSmall and local charities in England and Wales who are helping people overcome complex social issues can now apply for two-year unrestricted grants of £50,000 from Lloyds Bank Foundation for England and Wales.

The funding will be open all year round, meaning charities can apply at a time that suits them and will not be restricted by deadlines.

Successful charities will also get support from a regional manager who will work with them to access a wide range of organisational development support to help meet identified needs.

The deadline for applications is ongoing.

The Bernard Sunley Charitable Foundation 

The Bernard Sunley Charitable Foundation – The aim of this foundation is to help raise the quality of life in the UK, particularly for those who are young, disadvantaged, or elderly. Each year grants totalling about 2.5 million are made to a wide range of charities.

The deadline for applications is ongoing.

True Colours Trust

UK Small Grants – The UK Small Grants programme supports local organisations and projects that work to improve the lives of disabled children and young people as well as those with life-limiting conditions, and their families. Grants of up to £10,000 are available, although many grants are smaller than this.

The deadline for applications is ongoing.

Arts & Culture Finance

Arts & Culture Impact Fund - open for applications until summer 2023, offering loans between £150,000 and £1 million for UK based arts, culture and heritage organisations that have a clear social mission.

To find out more please visit our fund pages, read our case studies or submit an enquiry.

The deadline for applications is summer 2023.

Esmee Fairbairn Foundation

Esmee Fairbairn Foundation – Applications are now open for projects that improve the natural world, secure a fairer future, and strengthen the bonds in communities in the UK.

Esmee's new strategy will focus on the following three interdependent aims:

  • improving our natural world
  • tackling injustice to deliver a fairer future
  • nurturing creative, confident communities.

The deadline for applications is ongoing.

The Archer Trust

The Archer Trust  – Supports organisations working in areas of high unemployment/deprivation and who make good use of volunteers. Funding of up to £4,000 is available.

The deadline for applications is ongoing.

The D'Oyly Carte Charitable Trust

Funding for charities in the fields of the advancement of the arts, health and medical welfare and environmental protection or improvement.

The deadline for applications is ongoing.

Family Fund

The Family Fund is the UK’s largest charity providing grants for families raising disabled or seriously ill children and young people. Grants are provided for a wide range of items, such as washing machines, sensory toys, family breaks, bedding, tablets, furniture, outdoor play equipment, clothing and computers.

The deadline for applications is ongoing.

The Sainsbury Family Charitable Trusts

The Sainsbury Family Charitable Trusts – The Sainsbury family exists to provide economies of scale in the management of the trusts’ activities.

Each trust is an independent legal entity with its own separate and autonomous board of trustees, actively led by an individual member of the Sainsbury family.

Each trust’s charitable giving follows the family member’s own interests, priorities and ways of working.

The trusts only supports registered charities or activities with clearly defined charitable purposes. They do not make grants directly to individuals.

The deadline for applications is ongoing.


Community Grants

Tesco Community Grants is open to all registered charities and not for profit organisations to apply for a grant of up to £1,500.

Priority will be given to projects that provide food and support young people. The types of projects Tesco Community Grants aims to fund are:

  • Breakfast clubs
  • Holiday clubs
  • Food banks
  • Meals on Wheels
  • Equipment or non-statutory services for nurseries, schools, such as forest schools, library books
  • Equipment for Brownie, Guide or Scout groups, such as camping equipment, badges
  • Play areas
  • Counselling and support services for young people
  • Services or equipment to support children and young people’s health
  • Equipment/ kit for youth sports team. 

The deadline for application is ongoing

Support Adoption for Pets

Support Adoption for Pets Grant Programme – pet rescue organisations can apply for funding to help support pet rescues throughout the short and medium-term impact of the coronavirus.

Organisations can apply for funding of up to £10,000, or up to 30 per cent of total annual expenditure, whichever is the lower amount.

Funding must have a direct impact on animal welfare. Priority will be given to organisations whose medium-term survival is at risk.

The deadline for applications is ongoing.