Real Help for Communities: Volunteers, Charities and Social Enterprises

There have been a lot of government announcements recently of support and opportunities available to the third sector to help counter the impacts of the recession. All these opportunities are open now (or will start very shortly) and I thought a summary would be helpful. The funds are:

  1. The Modernisation Fund
  2. The Targeted Support Fund
  3. The Future Jobs Fund
  4. The Hardship Fund
  5. Volunteering Brokerage Scheme

The Modernisation Fund

The £16.5m Modernisation Fund provides support to viable third sector organisations to access specialist services in order to restructure and become more resilient and efficient in the recession. This funding will help in two ways:

  • Bursaries of £1k for organisations to pay for initial advice on how they can become more resilient and work more closely with others to increase their impact, and grants of up to £10k to help pay costs involved in moving towards collaboration or merger.
  • Interest-free loans of between £30K and £500K for third sector organisations with existing plans for mergers and collaboration or other activities to help them prepare for difficult times.

Now open for applications. Applications for grants element need to be received by 17th July 2009.
Further information and to apply:

The Targeted Support Fund

The £15.5m Targeted Support Fund will provide grant funding to small and medium providers in communities most at risk of increased deprivation due to the recession.
Services that will be funded under the Targeted Support Fund will be those that are providing key, recession focussed services under one of the themes below:

  • Information, advice and guidance
  • Employment and employablity
  • Health and wellbeing

Now open for applications. Applications need to be received by 29th June 2009.
Further information and to apply:

The Future Jobs Fund

The Government has created a £1 billion Future Jobs Fund to which third sector organistions and other organisations can bid to create around 150,000 new jobs. This is a new approach to creating jobs and providing hope for young people and jobseekers in deprived communities. There is specific mention of ‘Green Jobs’ which will be of particular interest to third sector organisations with close relationships to Defra.

Guidance information for third sector applicants is here.

RISE, one of Defra’s Social Enterprise Strategic Partners, have a useful article on this fund here.

Details of how to apply are on the DWP website.

Now open for applications. Bids submitted by 30 June 2009 will be considered for the first allocations of funding.

The Hardship Fund

A £16.7m Hardship fund for the sector was announced in the Budget. The Office of the Third Sector are in the process of appointing a delivery partner to adminsiter the scheme and an announcement will be made shortly. The aim is to have the fund open for applications in the Summer (200. Details will be published at:

Volunteering Brokerage Scheme

Government is providing work focused volunteering placements for up to 40,000 jobseekers in England, Scotland and Wales. Jobseeker’s Allowance customers who have been claiming for six months will be eligible to take up this support. The Scheme is being delivered in England by BTCV.

Further information by emailing:

Thanks to the Office of the Third Sector for the provision of the handout on which this post is based.

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  1. Posted 8 June, 2009 at 4:20 pm | Permalink

    I have just heard that Futurebuilders is setting up a consortium to help the third sector win contracts to help deliver the ‘Future Jobs Fund’. The consortium will trial a new approach for pooling expertise and resources for core services associated with tendering for contracts – such as bid writing, financial modelling, contract negotiation and performance management.

    If you are interested in taking part, please contact Ian Charlesworth, Futurebuilders Enterprise Director, tel: 020 7842 7704, email: ian dot charlesworth at futurebuilders-england dot org dot uk or Richard Litchfield, Eastside Consulting, tel 020 7770 6144, email: richard at eastsideconsulting dot co dot uk.

  2. Posted 3 July, 2009 at 4:43 pm | Permalink

    All the information from the OTS seminar on the Future Jobs Fund held on 2 June 2009 is now available here:

  3. Posted 13 July, 2009 at 10:23 pm | Permalink

    Picking up Simon’s comment above, a national third sector consortium called 3SC is being set-up by Futurebuilders, Eastside and number of partners. We have submitted a Future Jobs Bid and are waiting to hear back from DWP whether we are successful. We anticipate more opportunities for third sector organisations to get involved so please do get in touch

    Richard LItchfield, project lead

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