Strong community infrastructure has been vital in keeping people safe and well across Hampshire and the Isle of Wight in recent months. A new Covid-19 response fund worth £500,000 has launched today to support the local charities, community groups and voluntary organisations that are helping people whose lives have been severely affected by the pandemic. Grants of up to £5,000 will be available thanks to funds from the Department of Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS), which will be managed by the Hampshire and Isle of Wight Community Foundation (HIWCF).
Grants can cover core costs and will help towards the financial sustainability of organisations who are directly supporting people experiencing hardship as a result of the ongoing crisis. The grants will allow organisations to adapt their services and ways of working to react to the crisis, including buying equipment, organisational development and online fundraising.
Grants will also support groups that can prevent crises escalating within communities, with priority given to those who are reaching the most vulnerable and those at greatest risk of negative social, health or economic impacts. Projects responding to acute need will still be prioritised, and applications are welcomed from organisations where Covid-19 has had a disproportionate negative impact, including BAME communities.
The new NET CORONAVIRUS programme represents a transition from the initial relief phase launched by NET, dealing with the immediate shock of the crisis, to the longer-term resilience and response phrase providing help for those suffering from the economic and social aftermath of the pandemic.
Organisations can find out more information, check the criteria and apply for a grant from the HIWCF website: www.hiwcf.com/grants/ There is currently no closing date for grant applications.
Grant Cornwell MBE, HIWCF Chief Executive commented:
We would like to thank DCMS and the National Emergencies Trust for working in partnership with HIWCF, ensuring that funding will be awarded swiftly and efficiently to those in most need. With our knowledge of local need and priorities, we are perfectly placed to reach those groups, causes and projects that are working so hard to help those who have been hit hardest by the crisis. HIWCF and NET have played a key role in distributing first phase emergency funding across the region, with £865k distributed to 140 groups since lockdown began, and this new funding means that our communities can continue to react, be stronger and more resilient, making a huge difference to the lives of those most affected by the crisis.