Comic Relief Community Fund – *Round 1 deadline now 12 November 2021*

Article date
4 October 2021
Primary interest
Voluntary sector
The deadline for round 1 is now 12 November

Funding is intended to support community-led organisations to deliver change by drawing on the ‘lived experiences’ of people who have experienced the issues being tackled. These issues should align with one of Comic Relief’s four strategic themes:

  • Children Survive and Thrive – ensuring every child has the best start in life.
  • Fighting for Gender Justice – tackling gender-based violence, inequality and exploitation.
  • A Safe Place to Be – supporting those who have been displaced to access secure housing and feel settled in their new homes.
  • Mental Health Matters – helping people with poor mental health to access appropriate support

Grants of up to a maximum of £10,000 are available with:

  • Capacity Building grants of up to £1,000 to be spent on activities to strengthen operations and governance. (All applications must include this grant).
  • Project Delivery grants of up to £9,000 to deliver projects that fit with the programme’s strategic themes.
Who can apply

Community-led local organisations based in England may apply. This could include:

  • Constituted voluntary and community groups.
  • Charities.
  • Social enterprises.
  • Community Interest Companies which have been running for at least two years.
  • Not-for-profit companies limited by guarantee.

Organisations must have an annual turnover below £250,000.

What could the grant be used for

Capacity funding can be used to cover:

  • Development of better organisational governance.
  • Improvements to policies and procedures.
  • Increasing understanding of beneficiary needs.

Project delivery funding could be used to cover:

  • Hiring venues.
  • Paying co-ordinators to manage volunteer-led services.
  • Employing outreach support workers.
  • Improving indoor and outdoor facilities to reach new groups.
  • Paying volunteer expenses.
  • Materials and equipment.

Types of project could include:

  • Training for parents and carers to help support their children’s development before starting school.
  • Activities for girls or women to help them make healthier choices.
  • Supporting people with mental health issues to improve an outdoor space or create a meeting space.
  • Setting up a peer support network for people experiencing homelessness.

Projects must be completed within 12 months of receiving a grant.

Is there a deadline

This is a three-year fund with three application rounds:

  • Round 1 is currently open with a deadline of 12 November 2021. Panel meetings are expected in February 2022.
  • Round 2 will open in March 2022 and close in June 2022. Panel meetings are expected in September 2022.
  • Round 3 will open in October 2022 and close in January 2023. Panel meetings are expected in March 2023.

Please note the fund may close earlier than the deadline if sufficient applications are received before the date.

Further information, funding guidance and eligibility quiz can be found here: