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Covid-19 Charities Fund

Available: closed

Region: NI only  

£15.5 million COVID-19 Charities Fund, aimed at helping local charities during the coronavirus pandemic, will open on Monday 15 June 2020.        
The fund will support groups which:        
  • have lost income due to the impact of lockdown and    
  • are unable to cover unavoidable costs until 30 September 2020       
It will provide up to £75,000 of grant awards for eligible organisations and will be administered on behalf of the Department for Communities by The National Lottery Community Fund. The amount of funding required to cover immediate costs and prevent short term closure will vary for each organisation.        


Local charities facing severe financial difficulty are eligible to apply. To be eligible, charities will have to meet the following eligibility criteria:        
  • You must be able to demonstrate that your fundraising or trading income has reduced due to the impact of COVID-19.    
  • You have unavoidable costs to cover up to 30 September that cannot be covered by existing grants or public funding and are therefore at risk of imminent collapse.    
  • You are not in receipt of any other COVID-19 financial support from Northern Ireland Executive, including the:    
    • Department for the Economy Small Business Support    
    • Retail, Hospitality, Tourism and Leisure Grant    
    • Microbusiness Hardship Fund    
    • Department of Finance fund support for hospices    
Charities will be required to show that they have taken all reasonable steps to ensure their survival, including:        
  • exhausting all other funding/income sources before deciding to apply    
  • reducing activities to essential services over the immediate term    
Campaigning activities and loan repayments will not be supported. This funding is to ensure the survival of the organisation and will not be awarded to support new activity. Full details of eligibility criteria will be released when the programme launches.        

How to apply        

The Department for Communities is developing an online application system for the COVID-19 Charities Fund to help applicants through the process as simply as possible.        
This will include a dedicated web page where you will be able to check if you are eligible to apply. Those eligible will be then able to complete an online application form and submit required documentation to support their application.        
Further details on the application process will be announced when the fund launches.        
Find out more about COVID-19 Charities Fund.        
You can also send any enquiries or requests for further information to [email protected].    


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