The voluntary and community sector is vital to the lives of so many local people and we will work together, as we always have, to support them.  We all need to play our part in preventing any potential spread of COVID-19 (Coronavirus). During these challenging times, we want to make sure that we can help people stay safe and healthy.

Key updates for the sector:

KVA is also changing its way of working and re-prioritising efforts to support the community.  We will be continuing to send out newsletters and information and to offer our services where we can via email, the website and other means.  Sign up to our eNews and follow us on Twitter to stay updated.


We will be adding information on relevant funding sources to support VCSE organisations facing financial pressures and to help develop new services to respond to the Coronavirus below.


For more details of how we might support you, please visit our capacity building page or contact our Funding and Organisational Development Officer, Alison Ewart, at


Upcoming funding deadlines 

December 2020


Masonic Charitable Foundation
Small grants (from £1,000 up to £15,000 over three years) available for groups working with disadvantaged children and young people, and socially isolated and lonely older people. *The large grants programme, generally between £20,000 – £60,000 opens on 1st February 2021.
Deadline: 4pm on 23 December for small grants

January 2021

Thriving Communities Fund
This Fund (opens on 23rd November) will support local voluntary, community, faith and social enterprise projects that bring together place-based partnerships to improve and increase the range and reach of available social prescribing community activities – especially for those people most impacted by COVID19 and health inequalities ie Black, Asian and ethnically diverse communities. Grants of between £25,000-£50,000 are available. Projects within the Thriving Communities Fund will run for a year including planning and delivery time. They are expected to commence on 15 March 2021, and end on 31 March 2022. Partnerships MUST include an Arts organisation. 
Deadline: 8 January

The Health Foundation: Economies for Healthier Lives
The programme will support three to four partnerships, which are led by a local or regional authority, and can include community organisations, across the UK with funding of £300,000 to £500,000 for up to three years. It aims to create more inclusive economies geared towards reducing inequalities and improving health, supporting local and regional partnerships to implement some of the ideas in their latest report: Using economic development to improve health and reduce health inequalities. 

Deadline: midday on 15 January

February 2021

Trust for London
Grants are available for work that develops new and imaginative ways of addressing the root causes of London’s poverty and inequality, especially work which has the potential to influence and change policy, practice and public attitudes. Grants are up to £150,000 over three years.
Deadline: 1pm on 2 February


Rolling funding opportunities


Kingston funders


Love Kingston

Love Kingston is a project of Kingston Voluntary Action. Funding is available to community groups working under the themes of tackling isolation and encouraging integration. Grants are given to charities once a year to coincide with Love Kingston Day on 14 February. 

Kingston Council

Kingston Council has two small grant schemes.

Your Kingston Grants - Have an upper limit of £750 and enable smaller organisations to access funding to support local project or activities that will engage communities, benefit the Borough residents and help to deliver at least one of Kingston council’s Community Outcomes.

New Initiatives Grants - Have an upper limit of £3,000 and are annual grants for one-off projects or start up/development activities which can include a contribution to project overheads, but cannot be used for the day-to-day running costs of the organisation.


London funders


City Bridge Trust

The Trust currently awards around £20m per year to charitable causes in London. The majority of these grants are made under the Investing in Londoners scheme, which has a number of programmes.

Trust for London

Trust for London is an independent charitable foundation aiming to tackle poverty and inequality in London.  This is achieved by: funding voluntary and charity groups – each year they make grants totalling around £7.5 million, and at any one time, we are supporting up to 400 organisations. Funding is aimed at tackling poverty and inequality under 7 themes: Good Homes and Neighbourhoods; Better Work; Decent Living Standards; Shared Wealth; Pathways to Settlement; Stronger Voices and Connected Communities.

London Marathon Trust

The London Marathon Charitable Trust awards grants for capital projects that inspire and increase the numbers of people regularly taking part in physical activities.

Jack Petchey Foundation

Supports programmes and projects that benefit young people aged 11-25 in London and Essex. Their biggest programme, the Achievement Awards, is a 'peer recognition scheme' operating in grass-roots youth clubs, youth organisations, secondary schools and uniformed organisations.  The young award winners choose how best to spend their £250 award money to the benefit of their club or school.


National funders


Heritage Lottery Fund

Phase 1 - applications for grants from £3,000-£10,000 and £10,000-£100,000 will be accepted starting from 25 November 2020. This will provide some much-needed financial assistance, particularly to those heritage sector organisations who have, so far, been unable to access COVID-19 emergency funds. NLHF will be looking for projects with a particular emphasis on creating organisational resilience, boosting the local economy, supporting health and wellbeing and inclusion.

Phase 2 – applications for grants from £100,000-£250,000 and £250,000-£5 million will be accepted starting from 8 February 2021. This will mark a return to NLHF’s core business, but NLHF will not be returning to pre-Covid-19 “business as usual” in its approach.

Big Lottery Fund

The Big Lottery Fund (BLF) is responsible for distributing 40 per cent of all funds raised for good causes (about 11 pence of every pound spent on a Lottery ticket) by the National Lottery - around £670 million in 2016.  BLF grants range from £300 to more than £500,000 to community and voluntary groups and charities. 

Comic Relief

Comic Relief is a major charity based in the UK which strives to create a 'just world', free from poverty. Comic Relief allocates funding under four programme areas, investing in children and young people; empowering women and girls; improving health and wellbeing; and building stronger communities.

Esmée Fairbairn Foundation

Esmée Fairbairn Foundation fund the charitable work of organisations that are building an inclusive, creative and sustainable society. The Foundation is one of the largest independent grant-makers in the UK, focusing on the arts, children and young people, the environment and social change.

WHSmith Trust Community Grants Application

The WHSmith Trust is now offering grants of up to £500 to voluntary organisations and schools from the proceeds of the compulsory carrier bag levies across the UK. Grants are awarded every six months to charities, schools and community groups of any size, provided they support the community in the UK. There are two annual application rounds.

Tesco Bags of Help

Bags of Help is Tesco’s local community grant scheme where the money raised from the 5p bag is used to fund local projects in communities right across the UK.  Projects that bring benefit to their community will get the green light – these range from improving community buildings and outdoor spaces, to buying new equipment, training coaches or volunteers and hosting community events.

Waitrose Community Matters

Each month every Waitrose branch donates £1,000 (£500 in convenience shops) between 3 local good causes that customers choose.

Lloyds Bank Foundation

Programmes are designed to support charities that help people experiencing multiple disadvantage to make positive and lasting changes to their lives at critical points.

Arts Council

Invest money from Government and the National Lottery to support arts and culture across England. It offers awards from £1,000 to £100,000 to support a wide variety of arts-related activities, from dance to visual arts, literature to theatre, music to combined arts. 


Pro Bono support


Cranfield Trust

The Cranfield Trust is a national charity offering free business skills, advice and guidance to voluntary, community and social enterprise organisations. Support includes business consultancy, HR support, masterclasses and training.




If you need support from KVA to access funding at this time - please contact Alison Ewart on 


Remote working


We are being contacted by lots of organisations needing some practical support relating to setting up working from home for their staff and volunteers.  Superhighways have put together some blog posts sharing some remote working options and tips along with best practice guidance to ensure minimising of risk.



Involving Volunteers


There are a lot of offers of help during the current and unprecedented crisis. It is both heart-warming and gratifying to see our community coming together to help our more vulnerable neighbours. 

We would encourage all new community groups, unused to working with volunteers, to use only those volunteers with enhanced DBS checks to work directly with vulnerable people and children. 

Some groups are looking to ensure boredom and isolation are lessened by keeping in phone contact with those isolating, collecting books for a shared library delivery or many other initiatives that have been suggested. Unchecked volunteers will be able to shop, help to co-ordinate deliveries etc.  


Volunteer Handbook for Neighbourhood Volunteer Initiatives

If you are running a local mutual aid group or community response to coronavirus in your area, this example handbook can help you manage your activities safely.

Produced by Kingston Voluntary Action and Volunteering Kingston, it includes inductions, risk assessments, role descriptions, safeguarding and more.

Download the Example Volunteer Handbook for Neighbourhood Volunteer Initiatives


Thanks also to for giving us permission to share this video illustrating best practice we should all be following when involving volunteers at this time:


Supporting Volunteers from Robin on Vimeo.


Don't need volunteers right now? 

If you don't have a need for volunteers directly at your organisation at this time or for your own local community response - please signpost them to Kingston Stronger Together.



Support for the local VCS sector 

We have put together a list of guidance form various sources to help with running your charity/ local group during the COVID-19 outbreak. More information below;