About the Voluntary Sector Support Fund 2021-24
The Voluntary Sector Support Fund (VSSF) is the successor to the Corporate Services Grant scheme and will also replace the Adult Social Care and Public Health grants schemes which will end on 30 September 2021.
Grants awards will be made from 1 October 2021 to 31 March 2023, with a possibility to extend to 31 March 2024.
Funding awarded through VSSF grants in 2021-24 aims to strengthen the voluntary and community sector in our borough by:
- providing core funding to local organisations which work to help improve life for our residents
- helping to build capacity within the voluntary sector so that it can engage and work more with statutory sector organisations for better outcomes for our residents
- stimulating better ways of doing things for better outcomes for our communities
- providing support for newer and emerging organisations to establish themselves to help meet new and unmet needs
Support provided through the VSSF will also help organisations to continue their work with residents following the Coronavirus pandemic in 2020 and aid the Council in the recovery over the coming years.
Applicants are asked to read the VSSF criteria for funding before making an application. The criteria cover:
- which organisations can apply?
- eligibility and exclusions for VSSF funding
- our priority areas for funding
- the different grant streams available under the VSSF
We have also put together a series of frequently asked questions to help you.
Priority areas of funding
You will need to demonstrate that your grant request meet at least one of the five strategic areas outlined in the Council’s Plan:
- Grenfell Recovery (However, the VSSF is not able to fund duplicate services already funded for the bereaved and survivors, as well as projects funded through the Grenfell Projects Fund)
- A great place to live, work and learn
- Supporting and safeguarding vulnerable adults
- Healthy, clean and safe
- A place of culture to visit and explore
We are also keen to find out if organisations have a public health focus. Please note, however, applications will not be scored down if they are not addressing a public health priority. Please read the criteria for funding for a list of public health priorities.
Other priority areas for funding:
- Responding to Covid-19
- Value for money
- Reaching marginalised and seldom heard voices
- Supporting new organisations that have not received funding under the previous Corporate Services Grant scheme.
Application process and timelines
There is a two-stage application process for the VSSF. The Stage 1 form asks questions to ensure you are eligible for the programme funding.
If you are eligible for funding, we will provide access to a Stage 2 form through your application portal. This is a more detailed form and asks you questions about your organisations aims, finance and management; how you will use the grant and why it is needed; your outputs and outcomes; and your budget. If you are applying for more than £30,000 in total, you will be asked to answer questions about your project management processes and experience.
- The deadline for Stage 1 applications to be submitted is 12 noon on Friday 21 May 2021
- The deadline for Stage 2 applications to be submitted is 12 noon on Friday 28 May 2021
No applications will be accepted after the Stage 2 deadline.
The assessment stage will commence from 31 May 2021 and applicants will be notified of outcomes in late July.
Please note, we may need to reach out to the main contact provided in the application during the assessment stage. It is important they are reachable during this period.
Applications will first be assessed against the main eligibility criteria for funding. Following this initial screening, applications will then be assessed against a scoring system under six main headings:
- The financial position of the applicant organisation
- The aims and management of the applicant organisation
- Whether the proposed use of the funding is clear, based on a demonstrable track record of delivery or using an innovative approach that has merit
- Whether the applicant organisation has made a good case as to whether it meets the Council’s priority areas
- An assessment of the outcomes areas the applicant organisation will work towards
- Whether the budget is clear and represents value for money
If you are successful, you will be offered a provisional award. We will then make you a formal grant offer before 1 October 2021.
How to apply
To apply to the Voluntary Sector Support Fund, you will need to use the link below which takes you to an application portal managed by our grant management partner Rocket Science.
For technical queries regarding application form functionality, please contact Rocket Science at 020 7253 6289.
We have arranged a number of support sessions to help answer questions you might have before applying.