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Forum Home  →  Discussion  →  Access to justice and advice sector issues  →  Thread

Advice sector funding

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shawn mach
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Couple of related updates:

The coronavirus funding scheme for small charities faces renewed criticism, after it emerged that the government has withdrawn from agreements about how to distribute £60m.

The Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) pulled out of plans to distribute around £60m to small charities via delivery partners without warning a fortnight ago, according to several sources familiar with the discussions.

More: https://www.civilsociety.co.uk/news/government-criticised-after-withdrawing-from-small-charity-funding-agreements.html

The National Lottery Community Fund (NLCF) has opened a £45m programme to fund charities and social enterprises working with people “disproportionately impacted” by the coronavirus.

The money will be distributed through five partnerships, which includes £5m for migrant and refugee charities made available by the Barrow Cadbury Trust, and another £5m for homelessness charities via Homeless Link.

A further £5m will be distributed to charities giving welfare advice, while nearly £20m will go to social enterprises.

More: https://www.civilsociety.co.uk/news/national-lottery-community-fund-announces-45m-coronavirus-partnerships.html

And then more from the Access to Justice Foudnation:

We’re delighted to announce that the Community Justice Fund has secured a £5 million grant from The National Lottery Community Fund, the largest funder of community activity in the UK, which will provide vital funding to specialist legal advice organisations adversely affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The £5 million grant from The National Lottery Community Fund will be administered via the Community Justice Fund (CJF), a joint initiative between the Access to Justice Foundation and five other leading social justice funders. The CJF was set up to support specialist social welfare law advice agencies dealing with the immediate impact of the pandemic, as well providing longer term support for the sector’s wider renewal.

More: https://atjf.org.uk/community-justice-fund-secures-5-million-in-funding-from-the-national-lottery-community-fund

shawn mach
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Government’s small charity coronavirus fund to close next month:

Small charities in England have until 17 August to apply for funds from the Coronavirus Community Support Fund.

The £200m scheme, which is funded by the government and managed by the National Lottery Community Fund (NLCF), was opened in May on a first-come, first-served basis with no deadline.

Yesterday NLCF said in a statement that it has decided to close applications next month.

More: https://www.civilsociety.co.uk/news/government-s-small-charity-coronavirus-fund-to-close-next-month.htm

Mike Hughes
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Along with a number of small charities no doubt!

shawn mach
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Barely a quarter of a £200m emergency coronavirus fund for small charities in England has been allocated, and still less paid out, even though Rishi Sunak promised money would be distributed “at pace” when he announced the fund in early April.

The Guardian has learned that applications for grants from the pot are being assessed not only by the National Lottery Community Fund, which was publicly handed the task, but are also being privately vetted by consultants PricewaterhouseCoopers, which has been awarded a £1.4m contract for the work.

More: https://www.theguardian.com/society/2020/aug/03/barely-a-quarter-of-charities-coronavirus-fund-for-england-allocated

Timothy Seaside
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shawn mach - 03 August 2020 10:36 AM

The Guardian has learned that applications for grants from the pot are being assessed not only by the National Lottery Community Fund, which was publicly handed the task, but are also being privately vetted by consultants PricewaterhouseCoopers, which has been awarded a £1.4m contract for the work.

More: https://www.theguardian.com/society/2020/aug/03/barely-a-quarter-of-charities-coronavirus-fund-for-england-allocated

£1.4m seems a bit steep to me, but at least we can be sure that allocation of our public money is being audited carefully by a competent and professional business. https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-48621095

 

Mike Hughes
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I think you’ll find there is an algorithm involved in the sift.

shawn mach
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New report from the Justice Select Committee includes -

‘We recommend that the Ministry of Justice considers further grants for law centres and other not-for-profit legal services providers that are at risk of collapse. The Ministry of Justice should report back to us with its decision and provide its reasons if it decides not to provide such grants, and state what provision it will make for users of the centres that cease operations.’

https://committees.parliament.uk/committee/102/justice-committee/news/147657/support-lawyers-now-or-they-may-not-be-there-when-justice-is-needed/

shawn mach
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Lots of figures in here (... can’t seem to get them to add up):

New £3.1 million grant to enhance free legal advice and support, jointly delivered by the Ministry of Justice and the Access to Justice Foundation:

- major £500,000 investment already awarded to a number of larger charities to provide new national-level services
- £2 million of funding from the programme will be awarded to smaller not-for-profit organisations at regional and local levels in the autumn.
- around £270,000 of the grant has been diverted for emergency support to several organisations providing vital expert advice to litigants in person

This emergency funding is in addition to the MOJ’s £5.4 million cash injection for law centres and other legal advice charities to help people with housing, debt, discrimination and employment problems during the COVID-19 crisis.

https://www.gov.uk/government/news/more-support-for-those-representing-themselves-in-court

Mike Hughes
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shawn mach - 19 August 2020 03:47 PM

Lots of figures in here (... can’t seem to get them to add up):

A post in Cabinet awaits Shawn.

Gareth Morgan
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No, he’s realised he can’t add up.

shawn mach
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Meanwhile in other news ....

£5m digital fund for charities launches

... although apparently only £1.75m of the £5m will be given away in grants ... the remaining £3.2m will fund “expert support”

https://www.wearecast.org.uk/programmes/catalyst-the-national-lottery-covid-19-digital-response
https://www.thecatalyst.org.uk/covid-digital-fund

Gareth Morgan
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shawn mach - 20 August 2020 10:21 AM

... the remaining £3.2m will fund “expert support”

Which friend of Gove and Cummings is that?

Paul_Treloar_AgeUK
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Gareth Morgan - 20 August 2020 12:55 PM
shawn mach - 20 August 2020 10:21 AM

... the remaining £3.2m will fund “expert support”

Which friend of Gove and Cummings is that?

Cummings lives about quarter of a mile from me, so might cycle down his road later with my laptop on prominent display.

shawn mach
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Gareth Morgan
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shawn mach
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The National Emergencies Trust is announcing new partnerships with Age UK, Heads Together and Shelter, who will each receive a share of £12million in Coronavirus Appeal funds ring-fenced to target specific at-risk groups across the UK.

Each partner will receive funding to help groups disproportionately impacted by the pandemic, with a focus on remote services, including helplines and digital services. These have seen significant increases in demand since March, in particular from those seeking support from the charity sector for the first time.

More: https://nationalemergenciestrust.org.uk/age-uk-heads-together-and-shelter/

shawn mach
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From the Scottish Legal Aid Board:

Funding of up to £3.25 million is to be made available for a three-year programme to support access to debt advice in Scotland ...

The Covid-19 pandemic presents new challenges for the advice sector. Agencies have been rapidly refocusing working practices to enable continuity of advice and the impact of the pandemic may lead to a long-term increase in the need for formal debt advice solutions to be provided remotely.

The Debt Advice Journey Programme will fund projects designed to improve access to free debt advice by assisting with the development of changes to working practices that help manage demand on services and improve people’s experience of seeking advice.

The funding forms part of the Financial Services Levy for debt advice allocated by the Scottish Government. The programme will be managed by the Scottish Legal Aid Board (SLAB) to make funding available to test ideas that assist clients and allow existing debt advice staff to achieve a more effective resolution of debt problems within free advice services.

The Debt Advice Journey Programme objectives are to manage demand for debt advice and improve ways of working at key stages of the delivery of debt advice in free advice services. This work builds on the direction set out by Scottish Government through the Debt Advice Routemap which includes a vision for future allocation of the Scottish debt advice levy funds.

Applications for funding will be invited by SLAB shortly, with up to £650,000 available this year and up to £1.3million available in the two subsequent years. Successful projects will run to March 2023.

SLAB will welcome applications from agencies that provide free debt advice and access to statutory debt remedies, including Citizens Advice Bureau, independent advice agencies, law centres and local authorities.’

More: https://www.slab.org.uk/news/new-funding-to-support-access-to-debt-advice-services

 

shawn mach
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Charities with more data “find it easier to unlock government money”, the minister for civil society said yesterday.

Baroness Barran also defended the government from criticism over the amount of data demanded from charities applying for grants.

Speaking at the NPC Ignites conference, Baroness Diana Barran said that government and charities both have a “moral responsibility” to collect and share data as part of spending public funds.

... The minister also said that £200m in emergency funding that was promised to small and medium-sized charities in April and distributed through the National Lottery Community Fund, “is nearly all out now”.

However, she could not confirm that every grant will have reached charities by the end of this month, by which time more than seven months will have passed since the support was first announced.

More: https://www.civilsociety.co.uk/news/baroness-barran-defends-government-from-criticism-over-transparency.html

shawn mach
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Justice Select Commitee has published the govt’s response to the Committee’s August 2020 report on the impact of COVID-19 on the legal professions in England and Wales.

One of the Committee’s recommendations had been:

We recommend that the Ministry of Justice considers further grants for law centres and other not-for-profit legal services providers that are at risk of collapse. The Ministry of Justice should report back to us with its decision and provide its reasons if it decides not to provide such grants, and state what provision it will make for users of the centres that cease operations.

Govt’s response:

We agree with the Committee that Law Centres and other not-for profit providers play a vital role in helping people in communities across England and Wales access justice and resolve their legal problems. Over the past few months, the importance of these services has been brought into sharp focus and many providers have gone above and beyond to ensure vulnerable people across society can continue to get the help they need.

That is why, as a priority, the Government secured £5.4m in emergency grant funding to not-for-profit providers to ensure the people in the communities they serve can continue to access the help they need.

We are also continuing to work with our delivery partners - the Access to Justice Foundation and the Law Centres Network - and practitioners from across the not-for-profit advice sector to ensure people across England and Wales are effectively supported to access justice, as part of our wider work on legal support.

More broadly, we also continue to move forward with our £3.1m Legal Support for Litigants in Person (LSLIP) programme, a two-year grant funding pot also being delivered in partnership with the Access to Justice Foundation. The new programme is designed to provide services at local, regional and national levels with the aim of understanding more about how they can combine to help vulnerable litigants in person. To date, more than £500,000 of grants have been awarded to a number of charities to provide the new national-level services:

- Support Through Court (STC) and RCJ Advice – who are piloting a new remote support initiative, as well as adding new referral routes to STC’s existing telephone helpline.
- LawWorks – who will scale up their Free Legal Answers (FLA) website, which enables people on low incomes and not eligible for legal aid to access free, initial legal advice provided by registered pro bono solicitors.
- Law for Life – who will add new resources to their Advicenow website to assist people to deal with a range of legal problems, as well as creating new guidance to help individuals appear in virtual courts effectively.

A further £2 million of funding from the programme will be awarded to smaller not-for-profit organisations at regional and local levels this autumn. Distribution of this funding was moved back in order to give those organisations more time to manage the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic and put together their proposals.

More: https://publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm5801/cmselect/cmjust/898/89802.htm

 

shawn mach
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From Homeless Link:

A final 60 homelessness charities whose finances have been affected by the pandemic have been awarded grants from the second round of Homeless Link’s COVID-19 Homelessness Response Fund.

More: https://www.homeless.org.uk/connect/blogs/2020/nov/05/sixty-more-homelessness-charities-receive-emergency-grants

shawn mach
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Update from the London Community Response:

With the capital in another lockdown and facing more difficult times ahead, London’s funders have once again come together to provide new funding for civil society organisations.

Applications for grants of up to £10,000 have opened to help groups to support Londoners affected by covid-19 over the winter months. Applications will be assessed on a first-come-first-served basis, with a final deadline on Thursday 3 December 2020.

More: https://londoncommunityresponsefund.org.uk/news/over-ps4m-new-funding-available-support-londons-civil-society-organisations-through-second

shawn mach
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The Coronavirus Community Support Fund has now been fully allocated:

More than 8,000 small charities in England have been awarded funds from the government’s emergency coronavirus scheme.

The government said that it has now allocated the full £200m from the Coronavirus Community Support Fund which has been managed by the National Lottery Community Fund.

However, NLCF was unable to say whether all the charities allocated grants have yet received that funding.

More:

https://www.civilsociety.co.uk/news/over-8-000-government-grants-now-allocated-from-emergency-coronavirus-fund.html
https://www.gov.uk/government/news/coronavirus-community-support-fund-awarded-to-8250-charities

shawn mach
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The National Audit Office is looking at how well the government spent the £750m it allocated to support the charity sector during the pandemic ..... and anticipates publishing its report ..... next spring .....

More: https://www.civilsociety.co.uk/news/national-audit-office-to-scrutinise-government-support-for-charities-during-pandemic.html

shawn mach
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Update on the Community Justice Fund:

The Community Justice Fund, an initiative set up to support not-for-profit legal advice organisations as they cope with the impacts of COVID-19, has awarded £11,536,308 in its first round of funding to 178 specialist legal advice organisations across the UK that offer essential support to people and communities affected by the crisis.

More: https://atjf.org.uk/the-community-justice-fund-injects-11-5m-into-uks-free-legal-advice-sector-as-it-tackles-ongoing-impact-of-covid-19

Also reported in the Law Society Gazette: Free legal advice centres receive £11.5m in emergency funding

 

 

 

shawn mach
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The Covid Charity Grant Fund has opened in Northern Ireland ...

- the £11.7m Fund will provide financial support to charities who have lost income due to the impact of COVID-19 and wll be unable to cover unavoidable costs until 31/03/2021
- funding requests of up to £75,000 can be made, to be spent within 6 months. (The amount awarded will depend on the assessment of need and the demand for the available budget).
- the Fund is open for applications from organisations in the Charity Sector in Northern Ireland from 9am on Wednesday 6 January to Friday 22 January at 4pm.

More info: https://communityfinanceireland.com/covid-charity-fund-is-open-for-applications/

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Carers Trust awarded £1 million to support thousands of exhausted, unpaid carers:

The £1 million funding from the DCMS and Pears Foundation will support thousands of unpaid carers. In the first phase of the project, two thousand carers will be supported in the period up to the end of March 2021. Carers Trust will initially work with 37 of its Network Partners, distributing grants so carers can access local respite provision as well as replacement care. The funding will also develop infrastructure to provide longer-term benefits for unpaid carers. This will include training of volunteers to offer virtual online support and telephone befriending services, as well as counselling services and food box deliveries.

More: https://carers.org/news-and-media/news/post/99-carers-trust-awarded-1-million-to-support-thousands-of-exhausted-unpaid-carers

shawn mach
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NI has announced a further £2.75m for its Covid-19 Community Support Fund:

Communities Minister Deirdre Hargey today announced a further £2.75 million for Councils under the Covid-19 Community Support Fund to allow them to support the voluntary and community sector response to the continuing hardship created by the pandemic.

The funding boost will support local grassroots community and voluntary organisations across council areas working with individuals and communities during the pandemic to target need and alleviate poverty by:

- providing assistance to those on low income and at risk due to financial stress
- supporting access to food for those most in need
- helping to connect those living alone or in a rural and border area that are likely to experience challenges in accessing services

More: https://www.communities-ni.gov.uk/news/communities-minister-announces-further-boost-covid-19-community-support-fund

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For London orgs ... Wave 5 of the London Community Response is now open:

Wave five of the London Community Response is mainly focused on renewal, supporting three “missions” for the future beyond covid-19 – building strong communities, a new deal for young people, and ensuring a robust safety net. 

Renewal grants are for up to £50,000 to enable you to deliver work linked to these missions, over the year starting from April 2021.  Renewal grants can either be for a specific project, for a partnership, or for the core costs of running and growing your organisation. 

We are also able to offer a small number of crisis response grants to deal with urgent needs of London’s communities through the third lockdown and months ahead.  These grants will be for up to £10,000 for up to six months, starting as soon as the grant is awarded.

More: https://londoncommunityresponsefund.org.uk/

 

shawn mach
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Not strictly Covid-19-related but ....

MoJ and the Access to Justice Foundation have announced that they have ‘fully awarded’ £3.1 million funding to 11 new projects that cover more than 50 different organisations across England and Wales that are providing advice and guidance to those without legal representation.

More: https://www.rightsnet.org.uk/forums/viewthread/16944/

shawn mach
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Via Third Sector:

The professional services network PwC has been awarded a contract worth almost £1m to provide administrative support to a £16m government fund.

According to the government’s Contracts Finder website, the company will provide “grant admin services” in the running of the Youth Covid-19 Support Fund.

The £950,000 contract, which was awarded last month, runs until the end of June.

The £16.5m fund is open to grassroots youth clubs, uniformed youth groups, and national youth and umbrella organisations.

https://www.thirdsector.co.uk/accountancy-firm-wins-1m-contract-support-delivery-government-fund/policy-and-politics/article/1705706

https://www.gov.uk/guidance/apply-for-the-youth-covid-19-support-fund