This week's content:

1. CCF News and Events
2. Community News
3. Fundraising News
1. CCF News and Events 
We are delighted to announce that Carrickfergus Community Forum have been awarded a grant from The National Lottery Community Fund Northern Ireland !!!  This project will enable us provide support to local single people and single parent families during the current Covid crisis.

2. Community News
Resources to help families
On our resources page, Marie McGowan, Psychologist and Parents Plus Facilitator shares a lovely Time Capsule workbook’ that parents can use with their children to help them make sense of the crisis. We also describe Four steps to preserving family relationships under lockdown  namely 1Manage your own stress; 2) Attend to adult relationships 3) Talk to children about their worries; 4) Create a family routine as well as 16 tips to help you cope in the new world we live in
 See all our resources here  

Parents Plus Introductory Seminar
We are running a free seminar on the 2nd June for professionals who want to find out about any of our seven evidence based programmes and how they might work in their service. 

Supporting families remotely online and by phone.
Learn how to move your parenting groups individual sessions online. Our next training is starting on the 4th June.
New Parents Plus Children's Programme training
We have set up a new online Parents Plus Children's Programme Facilitator Training. This will be run over three days on 22nd and 25th June and 10th September. One of the advantages of online training is its increased accessibility and flexibility of delivery. With the Parents Plus DVDs available to stream and many extra resources on our website, programme delivery has never been easier

We have released more 'Introduction to Mindfulness' sessions for the coming weeks. The sessions are completely free, run over Zoom and are taken by trained mindfulness practitioners. If you are feeling stressed or anxious at the minute, mindfulness can be a really good way to ease this 💛
You can attend as little or as many sessions as you want.
To find out more or to register, visit:
I’m pleased to share my new project ‘Everyday Magic’ and ask for help in building it. I’m seeking stories with a sense of something magical in them, that happened in Mid and East Antrim. Later, I will be building a map with the stories incorporated, linking the place with its tales.

These could be stories you know about from the past, perhaps a yarn you’ve heard or a piece of family history. They could be something that happened to you. But all should include a sense of something magical to you.

You don’t need to have perfect grammar to share your story and you don’t need to even write it down - I’m happy to receive video clips or chat with you (over the internet or phone of course!) about your story. I’d also love to see any photos that might relate to your story.

Submission details:

Closing 30 June 2020, after which i will curate the stories for inclusion
Up to 3000 words, but preferably short ‘flash’ style pieces
Poetry, prose, history, memoir, humour, speculative, ghostly — anything goes!
Must be clearly linked to a place that I can put on the map.
There is no payment for the stories - this is a community project.
Submissions to

What will happen to the stories:

Those selected will be linked to the map and the original piece fully attributed.
If anyone wishes to remain anonymous, that’s absolutely fine
Stories will be shared to local communities and online, with the map as the vehicle to link in and read the stories
As lockdown restrictions ease, we know carers need up-to-date information to support themselves and the person they care for. Our coronavirus guidance includes information about changes to benefits, mental wellbeing, working and caring, and more. Find the latest updates at
3. Fundraising News
The much anticipated £15.5M COVID-19 government funding package has received Executive approval and will launch shortly.

NICVA's Chief Executive gives an update on what is known about the funding, along with an update on the COVID-19 Contact Tracing Service Steering Group and our follow up with the Department for Economy regarding the exclusion of Social Enterprise Organisations from the Department’s support packages.  Read more

If you would like to receive direct updates from Seamus McAleavey in reponse to our role in the global pandemic and what we are doing to support you as a sector, subscribe here.


Covid-19 Grant Schemes from local Councils

4 Councils are still running competitive, open grant schemes.  The others have now closed their COVID-19 grant schemes or have been distributing funds other than by open competition.  See the link above for full details.

COVID-19 Funds from Trusts and Foundations Currently Open

Every three months, £250,000 is shared equally among their UK employees to donate to the forward thinking projects that matter to them most. Each charity can apply for up to £50,000. In addition to the usual 2 key funding areas of community resilience and financial capability and inclusion, for the current round of funding they have broadened the eligibility criteria to include core running costs of causes looking to adapt or continue their vital services throughout the COVID-19 outbreak. The COVID-19 2020 Booster Grants programme will open to current BBC Children in Need grant-holders from Monday 18th May 2020 and will enable organisations to apply for funding up to £5,000 over a 6 month period.

The COVID-19 Large Grants programme will open to applications from 8th June 2020 and will enable organisations to apply for funding up to £80,000 over an 18 month period. An Emergency Funding programme to support charities that are experiencing financial difficulties as a result of the current pandemic. The trust particularly welcomes applications from Christian based organisations. Grants of up to £2500 for community based food provision responses that support local families with children under 10 as a result of the order to close schools and/or loss of household income as a result of the COVID-19 virus. As the closure order may run into the summer holiday period the fund is keen to support community based programmes that can provide support across this entire period.  (Managed by Community Foundation for NI) The Community Foundation for Northern Ireland's Coronavirus Community Fund is a key NI fund and aims to help constituted groups in NI to deal with the emerging issues of Coronavirus.  
NB This fund has been continually widening its focus.  The fund is now offering grants of up to 10K for the following -  
  • Older people (aged over 50) 
  • Those at increased risk, particularly in relation to poor mental health and wellbeing
  • Vulnerable isolated people and families, particularly those living in rural areas, families where a parent/ both parents have lost their employment or where children are living in poverty
  • Children and young people’s projects, particularly focusing on the voice of young people and connecting through creative mediums.  
  • Black, Asian and ethnic minority communities
NB Safeguarding guidelines changed on 27/03 to reflect the fact that groups want to respond to immediate COVID-19 issues and may not yet have full adult safeguarding policies and procedures in place.   A new fund from the UK insurance and long-term savings industry, launched 18th May. Working in partnership with the Charities Aid Foundation (CAF), National Emergencies Trust (NET) and others. Aiming to raise £100 million to help those most affected by COVID-19, with £82.5 million already having been pledged.  NB Please note that this fund is not open to applications as it will use other partners like CAF and NET to distribute funds raised. Now focusing their funding based on their core objectives in the former Antrim Borough Council area. All potential applicants need to contact the administrator directly with an outline of the new or existing project. Continuing to accept applications for funding from: i) charities who are struggling to survive funding crises during the Covid-19 pandemic, and (ii) charities who are seeking funding for future projects/activities. Making an additional £16 million of funding available this year in response to COVID-19.  £14 million will be in fast-response grants for organisations they currently support across all of their sectors: the arts, children and young people, environment, food and social change. £2 million will be for contributions to emergency funding schemes in collaboration with others.  Currently closed to new applications to concentrate support on organisations they already fund.  Had planned to reopen their new grant programmes (in line with their new strategy) in May, but this has now been delayed until September. Now offering a single grants scheme offering grants of up to £5000 for COVID-19 related projects.  The aim is to make it easier for charities to access aid quickly to provide vital services during the Covid-19 crisis.  Funded by M&S Family (including M&S Bank and M&S Energy), Lidl, Aldi, Danone UK & Ireland and Coca-Cola European Partners this new fund provides immediate micro-grants to community organisations that are helping the people most affected by the outbreak, including the elderly, those on low incomes and people at risk of food insecurity.   NB As of 25th May, more than 594K had been allocated out of an increased funding pot of £1.16 million (The original funding pot was just 500K.)   2 New funds to help existing network and current grant recipients:
  • The Emergency Fund is for immediate grants of up to £750 to purchase equipment, technology or memberships;
  • The Resilience Fund will provide grants to cover cashflow, fundraising and loss of income, and to help with increased demand for services.
Initially, funding will only be available to the Foundation’s RankNet members, but public access may be given at a later date.  They are currently reviewing their Pebble Grants programme criteria to allow for wider, public access.  A new fund for social enterprises and charities who are experiencing disruption to their normal business model as a result of COVID-19. It was established to make an existing government scheme (the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS) more easily accessible to charities and social enterprises.  The £25m is part of a wider package of support announced by Big Society Capital. Support Adoption For Pets provides funding to pet rescue organisations for purposes which make a real difference to the welfare of UK domestic pets in rescue and aim to reduce the number of domestic pets in rescue.  Their grant programme has been redeveloped to support rescues throughout the short and medium-term impact of the Coronavirus. A £100 million COVID-19 Community Aid Package - The package consists of two strands. £50million will be donated to charities chosen by Barclays and £50million will be donated by matching their employees' personal donations (individual organisations cannot apply for this funding. The money will be disbursed principally in the UK, but also in Barclays’ international markets, including the USA and India. In collaboration with the Legal Education Foundation and the Esmée Fairbairn Foundation, provides grants of up to £40,000 for one year to support legal action in all its forms – empowering, persuading, challenging – that seeks to protect vulnerable individuals and communities from the impact of Covid-19 and the response to the pandemic from public authorities, businesses, and communities.  ​   Hardship grants of between £1,500 and £2,500 to enable individuals, including those on short-term PAYE contracts, to survive financially while they explore other ways of sustaining themselves during COVID-19. £1 million will be available to applicants living in England, and £500,000 to those living in NI All funding decisions for the next six months (up to £300m of National Lottery funding) will be devoted to addressing the current crisis. In addition, they are accelerating the cash part of this funding as much as they can, so that they can get money to where it needs to be. This is not new money, but it will be faster money. The new level of Heritage Emergency Fund grants are worth £50,000-£250,000. Available to all past and current National Lottery Heritage Fund grantees and can be used to cover essential costs for up to four months.  Intended to help organisations in the heritage sector address immediate risks, become more stable and work towards longer-term recovery after the crisis.  The new grants are in addition to the existing £3,000-£50,000 Heritage Emergency Fund grants which were launched in mid-April as the crisis began to unfold and will be open until 30th June. FAQ The National Emergencies Trust launched an appeal to raise funds to help local charities to support those individuals suffering hardship as a result of the coronavirus outbreak. The money raised is now available through the Community Foundation for NI's Coronavirus Community Fund - see above.   It released £2.5m to community foundations on 26th March.  (NB There is no separate fund.)​ Offering a dedicated package of free Covid-19 support for all forms of community business – including woodlands, farms, bakeries, pubs and shops, as well as those developing groups that have been affected by the pandemic.   Includes support and guidance on developing short – medium term cash flow, reviewing business plans, applying for funding, upholding good practice governance and utilising community shares and accessing government support. A new £5million grant and one to one support and guidance fund for young entrepreneurs aged 18-30 affected by coronavirus. Grants can be used to maintain core business operations during the crisis, as well as meet any existing financial commitments, such as paying for essential equipment or settling invoices from suppliers The Support Grants and Loans Package aims to support the electrical waste reuse and recycling sector as a result of the impact of the coronavirus.  It will provide £5 million of interest free loans to electrical waste treatment facilities and £0.6 million of grants to charity sector reuse organisations.



For a full list of upcoming dates see GrantTracker



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