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Grant Opportunities

Grant Opportunities

There are two new grant opportunities for Girlguiding Ulster Units:

VCSE Covid Recovery Fund

On behalf of the Department for Communities (DfC), Co-operation Ireland in partnership with Rural Community Network announces the re-opening of the VCSE Covid Recovery Fund.

Following the closure of the first phase of the Fund in December 2020, a review has identified that funds remain available that would allow for the purchase of PPE and other sundry items to enable the re-opening and/ or continued delivery of vital community services. With potential for future PPE funding opportunities limited, this provides an opportunity for the Sector to make new or additional applications to help organisations plan ahead and ensure their premises are ready to deliver services as soon as Covid restrictions are relaxed.

This phase of the Fund, which opens for applications at 10.00 am on Monday 18 January 2021, is to ensure that VCSE organisations have the sufficient PPE required to continue service delivery. Groups can apply for awards up to £5,000 for purchase of PPE. Organisations who were previously successful in applying to this element of the fund can reapply to receive up to £5,000 (e.g. if an organisation was awarded £2,000 from the 1st phase of applications, they can apply for a further £3,000).

The Key Features of the Fund are:
The Fund will be open to applications from Monday 18th January (10.00 a.m.) to Friday 29th January 2021 (4.00 p.m.)

  • Grants of up to £5,000 are available to voluntary, community or social economy organisations
  • Open for applications between 18th January – 29th January 2021 (4.00 p.m.)
  • Applications must be submitted using the online application process
  • Funding must be spent by 31 March 2021

To make an application to the VCSE Covid Recovery Fund or for further information on what support is available, please click the following link:

Dormant Accounts Fund

The Dormant Accounts Fund NI is now open. This programme will support the VCSE sector in Northern Ireland to be more resilient and prepared for the future by funding activity that increases long term capacity and sustainability.

It is being delivered by The National Lottery Community Fund.

Around £20 million is currently available and money will continue to be released to distribute each year. Given that this is a rolling fund, a phased and long-term approach is being taken to support the sector that will be based on learning.

As part of the first phase, organisations can now apply for grants of £100,000 to support activity that improves long-term capacity, sustainability or resilience to best deliver their mission. There is no closing date, so organisations are being encouraged to take their time and carefully consider what activity they need to do in the long term to build their capacity, resilience and sustainability. For full details and to apply visit The National Lottery Community Fund website.

This first phase will also support larger Northern Ireland-wide or sector-specific proposals that will enable collaboration and develop new and creative approaches to sustainability. These could focus on specific themes such as volunteering, digital capacity or diversity and inclusion. These are examples of themes and not set criteria. If you have an idea that would fit with this or would like to find out more, please contact us on 028 4378 0003 or email

Minister for Finance, Conor Murphy, officially launched the Dormant Accounts Fund NI in December 2020. Ultimately, it will deliver long-term transformational change for VCSE organisations.