Funding News – 25 September 2023

Your weekly funding news and deadlines update from GrantTracker.

Funding News

Community Foundation for Northern Ireland open programmes

Five new local community benefit funds, set up by Gaelectric in 2016 and now managed by CGN Europe - a wind energy and energy storage company that believes in a sustainable future have been launched.  They include

Deadline for all schemes 24 October 2023 (1pm).

Big Issue Invest: Social Impact Debt Fund IV

The Fund will offer secured Unitranche loans for asset-backed growth and diversification and will target borrowers creating an impact in the Care, Housing, and Social Infrastructure sectors. Anticipated loans will be fixed rate, sized between £1m and £4m with expected terms of 3 to 5 years. They plan to offer loans greater than £4m in due course.

Electrical Safety First: Electrical Safety Fund

Electrical Safety First is committed to helping those who are most vulnerable to electrical risk and injury in their homes; risks that have exacerbated in recent years the cost-of-living crisis, rocketing inflation, and rising energy prices. Although applications are invited for grants of up to £5,000 per organisation, they may consider larger funding amounts of up to £10,000 for joint and/or larger projects, which focus on or incorporate a data capture element and require cross-agency working. Eligible applicants are fire and rescue services, trading standards authorities, community safety organisations, schools or other educational institutions, not-for-profit organisations. Deadline 22 October 2023.

British Science Week 2024: Community Grants

British Science Week is an annual celebration of science, technology, engineering and maths, coordinated by the British Science Association and funded by UK Research and Innovation (UKRI). UKRI is providing funds to distribute grants of £500 and £1000 for community groups/organisations to run events during British Science Week 2024, which will take place from 8-17 March. The scheme aims to expand and diversify the audiences who engage with science and grow interest in science by empowering and supporting community group. Deadline 6 November 2023 (23:59).

Sport NI: Sports System Investment – Governing Bodies

In recognition of the strategic role sport governing bodies play, the Sports Systems Investment – Governing Bodies programme is the first strand of the sports systems investment to implement ‘The Power of Sport’. This investment is to enable the delivery of: Outcome 1: People adopting and sustaining participation in sport and physical activity. A programme budget of £100,000 from the National Lottery is currently available for sports’ governing bodies to apply for, up to a maximum individual award of £25,000 to be fully spent by 31 March 2024. Submissions assessed on a rolling basis until 8 December 2023. The project, in the main, should benefit the inhabitants of Northern Ireland. 

Music for All’s funding round 3 now open

Music for All are delighted to be able to offer financial awards as well as donations of instruments in a range of categories. Music for All provides grants for both individuals and groups to enable more people to access musical instruments and lessons and music programmes for the community. Next deadline 27 October 2023 (23:59).

Upcoming Deadlines

Foras na Gaeilge: Colmcille Project Schemes

Foras na Gaeilge is providing funding through the Colmcille Project Scheme to help applicants build relationships between the Scottish and Irish Gaelic language communities, and to strengthen Scottish and Irish Gaelic through this relationship. Funding for both is £10,800. Colmcille Project Scheme B. Deadline 28 September 2023. Colmcille A Project Scheme (Call 1). Closing date 20 October 2023.

Reach for the Sky Challenge Fund

The Reach for the Sky Challenge Fund will help to get young people from all backgrounds into aviation. After a popular first year, the Reach for the Sky Challenge fund returns in 2023. Organisations can apply for a share of £750,000 to support outreach projects that will contribute to the Generation Aviation programme. Deadline 29 September 2023 (noon).

Art Fund: Jonathan Ruffer curatorial grants

Their Jonathan Ruffer curatorial grants support UK curators and other museum professionals who are employed by or working in partnership with a museum, gallery, archive or arts organisation which has charitable status and regularly programmes exhibitions that are open to the public. Funding allows professionals to undertake travel and other activities that will extend and develop their curatorial expertise, collections-based knowledge and art historical interests. Up to £2,000; and £2,000+. Small grant no deadline. Large grant deadline 29 September 2023.

The Fat Beehive Foundation: Digital Funding for Small Charities

They fund charities with an average income of less than £400,000 a year providing highly specialised grants up to £2500. They provide highly specialised grants up to £2,500. for websites and digital products to other small UK registered charities. Q3 focus is Equality & Diversity. Deadline 29 September 2023 (5pm).

Austin and Hope Pilkington Trust

The Austin and Hope Trust gives grants to UK registered charities that work with communities in the UK. Grant Round 4 focuses on children and young people in care and care leavers. Grant £5000. Eligible organisations must have a minimum operating income and expenditure of £1m. Deadline 30 September 2023.

Fundraising Support for autumn 2023


Free Online Introductory Fundraising Workshops for NICVA Members

We are hosting a series of FREE workshops for NICVA members introducing a different fundraising topic or aspect of fundraising. These sessions are an opportunity to find out about an area of fundraising that's new to you, top up your existing knowledge, or be a snapshot into an element of fundraising you'd like to explore. Each workshop is led by NICVA’s Fundraising Advice Officer.


A Practical Guide to Completing Funding Applications

As the voluntary and community sector face a squeeze on finances from a variety of sources, securing funding is essential but it’s a competitive environment. This in-person event gives a useful overview and the practical advice you need to complete funding applications with a focus on addressing emerging funding priorities.

  • 30 November 2023
  • 9:30am to 12:30pm
  • Paid (£35 members £50 non-members)

Fundraising Clinics

These popular, free fundraising advice clinics provide members with an hour-long chance to discuss and address specific fundraising needs.  The sessions can be delivered online, in-person or over the telephone.

Taking place, the last Tuesday in September, October, and November, you can book a slot from 10am until 4pm. See links below:


Explore the Fundraising Hub for a wide range of resources to support your fundraising journey. A few are below:

NEW Community Ownership Fund – updated prospectus and increased matched capital funding level

The Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities (DLUHC) has opened Round 3, Window 2. This window and future ones will now include an extended maximum funding level, increasing from £1million to £2million. 

NEW Meta and PayPal Giving Fund announce partnership – what it means for fundraisers using Facebook and Instagram

The partnership between Meta and PayPal Giving Fund to handle the processing of charitable donations means UK organisations need to act to avoid disruption to their fundraising on Facebook and Instagram. Fundraisers should also note that processing fees will now be incurred.

National Lottery funding distributors announce big changes

Both The National Lottery Community Fund and The National Lottery Heritage Fund have launched their new funding strategies. A summary of the changes is provided.

Get ahead with GrantTracker and access over 1000 funding schemes in NI's leading database.  Just £100 a year for NICVA members and £145 for non-members. Sign up  here.