Covid-19 Response and Recovery Grants

Grants of up to £5,000 for Covid-19 Response and up to £5,000 for Covid-19 Recovery are available now.

SYCF and community foundations across the country are working with the National Emergencies Trust to support community groups and charities responding to and recovering from the Covid-19 pandemic.

The Co-op has also donated funding to this programme, which will be used to support local charities and community organisations that are working to tackle food poverty in communities across the UK as a result of Covid-19. The money was raised over the summer through purchases from the Co-op’s picnic range.”

Aims and priorities:

Our first aim is to support charities, voluntary groups and social enterprises responding to the Covid-19 crisis:

  • Meeting the needs of their local community resulting from Covid-19: this includes (but is not limited to) delivering food parcels and medicine, providing befriending service and other crucial community services and activities to support vulnerable people at this time
  • Providing information, advice, counselling and other support to help people cope with isolation, bereavement and emotional stress caused by Covid-19

Our second aim is to support charities, voluntary groups and social enterprises recovering from the Covid-19 crisis and lockdown restrictions:

  • Getting their services back up and running as lock-down eases, or finding new ways of working in the “new normal”: this includes (but is not limited to) the extra costs of delivering services online or in a socially distanced way, and the extra costs of PPE and cleaning needed to restart face-to-face delivery
  • Maintaining vital community services where other income has been lost as a result of Covid-19: this includes funding the core costs of services over the next few months

Funding can be used for capital and revenue costs that will help you recover from lockdown restrictions:

  • Build capacity of your organisation including skill development,
  • Cover core costs to assist with the operation of your organisation,
  • Help you explore and adapt to new ways of working,
  • Provide time and resources to assist with working in collaboration with new partners.

Please note that all grants should be spent by 31 January 2021.

Priority will be given to voluntary organisations providing support to the most vulnerable and isolated including:

  • Older people
  • People with disabilities
  • People with mental health needs
  • People on low ​incomes
  • Families with young children
  • Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic communities

Who can apply:

Not for profit organisations can apply so long as they:

  • Have a governing document (e.g. a constitution or memorandum of association),
  • Have a board or management committee of at least three unrelated people,
  • Have a bank account in the name of the group requiring at least two unrelated signatories, and
  • Have beneficiaries who live in South Yorkshire and are locally led and run. This includes locally constituted and managed branches of national or large charities.

Mutual Aid Groups and other un-constituted organisations:

We know that many new organisations and informal groups have been formed specifically to respond to the current crisis, and that many of them are doing vital work in local neighbourhoods.  We are keen to support that work, but we cannot fund organisations which don’t have a governing document (a constitution or set of rules for how the group is run) and a bank account in the name of the organisation.

We welcome applications from established organisations to cover the costs of coordinating the work of local Mutual Aid Groups, or to purchase food and other items to be distributed through Mutual Aid Groups.

If you are part of a Mutual Aid Group which doesn’t have its own governing document and bank account, please consider encouraging a local Community Hub or other established organisation to apply for funding to support your work.

If you are unsure about any of the above text or have any other queries then please contact the Grants Team via email

What we cannot fund

We cannot fund:

– For profit organisations

– Statutory organisations such as city and county councils, hospitals and schools

– Individuals

– Grants that are for the provision of bursaries or grants of money to individuals or families


Given the challenging circumstances we are all working in, and how rapidly the situation is developing, we will try to keep reporting requirements simple and flexible.  We do want to be able to tell good stories about the vital work community organisations are doing to keep people healthy and safe, so we will ask groups which receive a grant to share with us photos, videos and case studies if they are able to.  We also want to know what difference these grants make, so at the end of the grant we will ask groups to tell us how they spent the money, what difference it made and what they learned during the process.

How to apply

The easiest way to apply is to complete the online form here >

If you cannot complete the online application form, please send an email to  including a contact telephone number. We will call you back and ask you some questions over the phone so that we can complete the form on your behalf.

When to apply

You can apply now.  We will try to process your application as quickly as possible.  Currently applications are taking about 4 weeks to assess if they are complete and all required documents are attached.  If your application is successful, we will try to make grant payments as quickly as possible.  We are doing our best to develop our process in response to the ongoing crisis, so please be patient with us!

How to donate

It is thanks to the generosity of local donors and our coordination with the national appeal that we have been able to launch this fund quickly in response to the ongoing crisis around Covid-19.  If you would like to contribute to this fund, please visit our Just Giving page or click here for more information.