Apply for funding

We award grants through nearly 300 different funds at the Community Foundation set up by people and organisations who want to make a difference. We know that applying for funding can be difficult, so we’re here to make it as straightforward as possible. Please take the time to read these pages carefully before starting an application and, if you have any questions, please get in touch. We can also suggest ways you can get help and support with applying. 

Apply as an individual

**Important: on 20 January 2020 we launched a new grants system. All applicants will need to register on the new system and be approved before they are able to make an application. For more information click here. **

The Community Foundation has a number of funds which have been set up to make a difference by helping individuals in the community.

These funds are particularly targeted towards young people leaving care, those in education and those developing talents in the arts, sports and science.


It is important that you read the information very carefully before applying to make sure you are eligible and, if so, that your application reaches us through the right channel. If you have any questions about applying, you can call us on 0191 222 0945

Please only apply if your request fits with one of the funds shown.

Our current opportunities for funding will be shown once you've read this information. 

Generally grants are for individuals living in Tyne and Wear or Northumberland, but some funds help people in other parts of North East England. The information about which areas are eligible is explained in the details for each fund.

Please note:

  • Some funds have deadlines.
  • You will normally get a funding decision from us within 12 weeks from the date we receive your completed application.
  • Please only apply if your request fits with one of the funds shown.

Apply as an individual

**Important: on 20 January 2020 we launched a new grants system. All applicants will need to register on the new system and be approved before they are able to make an application. For more information click here. **

The Community Foundation has a number of funds which have been set up to make a difference by helping individuals in the community.

These funds are particularly targeted towards young people leaving care, those in education and those developing talents in the arts, sports and science.


Current calls for applications

Apply as a group

**Important: on 20 January 2020 we are launching a new grants system. All applicants will need to register on the new system and be approved before they are able to make an application. For more information click here. **

We make grants to a wide range of groups from nearly 300 funds. Generous people and organisations set up funds at the Community Foundation to make a difference to causes they care about. No two funds are the same, so our job is to match eligible applications to each fund’s interests.


It is important that you read the information very carefully before applying to make sure you are eligible and, if so, that your application reaches us through the right channel. If you have any questions about applying, you can call us on 0191 222 0945.

Before you start, please note that we do not fund:

  • activities which are not charitable in law;
  • organisations that do not have adequate safeguarding arrangements;
  • contributions to general appeals or circulars;
  • religious activity which is not for wider public benefit;
  • where the primary benefit is to enable a public body to carry out its statutory obligations;
  • activities where the primary benefit is the advancement of animal welfare;
  • activities which have already taken place;
  • grant making, or equivalent gifts in kind, by other organisations;
  • privately owned and profit-distributing companies or limited partnerships.

Which area do we need to be in to apply?

Our main area of benefit is Tyne & Wear (Newcastle, Gateshead, North Tyneside, South Tyneside and Sunderland) and Northumberland. If your work benefits all or part of this area, you can apply to us at any time.

If your work is in Durham, the Tees Valley or elsewhere in the UK, you should only apply if we have a current call for applications that says we will award funding in your area. Otherwise your application will not be eligible. 

What sort of organisation do we need to be to apply?

We make grants to a wide range of voluntary and community organisations. You don’t have to be a registered charity, but the work you want us to fund must be legally charitable. We can only make grants for general running costs or unrestricted purposes to charities. If you are any other sort of organisation, funding from us must be restricted for a charitable purpose. 

Your organisation must have a governing document (a constitution, rules, articles of association etc.), a governing body of at least three unrelated individuals, and a bank account in the group’s name with at least two unrelated signatories. You must also have adequate safeguarding arrangements in place. 

Community Interest Companies (CICs) or other social enterprises that are not charities can apply for the charitable costs of starting up the enterprise, setting up to trade goods in a new market or developing new goods and services to trade in line with a sound business plan. The Foundation does not normally support CICs and other non-charity social enterprises with the costs of continuing services, which should be financed by the sale of goods and services in line with the governance model they have chosen.

We don’t usually fund large national charities unless they already have strong connections in our area and the work will make a big difference to our communities.

What size of organisation do we need to be to apply?

You can apply whatever your income, but we are particularly keen to help grassroots and small-to-medium-sized voluntary organisations. 

Some of our funds have more specific requirements about the size and type of organisations eligible. When this is the case, we have a dedicated call for applications stating the extra criteria you must meet. 

What can we get funding for?

You can apply for funding towards:

  • keeping your current services or activities going, expanding them or working in new areas;
  • making your organisation stronger, through improving services, developing your staff and trustees or working on your longer-term plans;
  • influencing relevant policy and practice that could improve the situation for the people and communities you help.

Funding can be towards your core running costs (including salaries and overheads), projects, equipment or capital developments. The work can be new, continuing or a one-off initiative. Whatever you are seeking funding for must have a good case for support. That means being able to explain what you will do with the grant, who will benefit and how you know the work will make a difference.

How much can we apply for?

We mainly make small grants of £1,000 to £10,000. The average grant is around £6,000. We don’t accept applications for less than £750. 

Some of our funds make larger grants. When this is the case, we have a call for applications stating the amounts available. Occasionally we make larger awards where we combine contributions from different funds to address a particular issue. We do this by inviting proposals from groups working in that area. 

How quickly will we get a decision?

If we cannot consider your application, we aim to tell you as soon as we can. 

For eligible applications, we aim to give you a decision within 12 weeks of receiving all the information we need. If we think your application fits one of our funds but it will take more than 12 weeks to make a decision, we will contact you.

Can we apply again if we have before?

If you applied to us and were successful, you can apply again so long as you have sent us any outstanding reports from previous grants.

If your most recent application to us was unsuccessful, you may be able to apply again but we might suggest things that you need to change or get advice about before you do.

Apply as a group

**Important: on 20 January 2020 we are launching a new grants system. All applicants will need to register on the new system and be approved before they are able to make an application. For more information click here. **

We make grants to a wide range of groups from nearly 300 funds. Generous people and organisations set up funds at the Community Foundation to make a difference to causes they care about. No two funds are the same, so our job is to match eligible applications to each fund’s interests.

Ways to apply

Make a general grant application

We consider applications all year round with no set deadlines or special requirements. You just need to complete our general application form. We will assess your proposed activity and see if we have one or more funds available that could support you. If we do, we will assess your application for those funds.

Apply online here

Answer a call for applications

Some of our funds are for specific activities. Others only consider applications at set times of the year. You can apply to these funds when we make a call for applications. We will look at your proposed activity and, if it matches the fund aims, we will assess it to see if we can offer support.


Apply as a group

**Important: on 20 January 2020 we are launching a new grants system. All applicants will need to register on the new system and be approved before they are able to make an application. For more information click here. **

We make grants to a wide range of groups from nearly 300 funds. Generous people and organisations set up funds at the Community Foundation to make a difference to causes they care about. No two funds are the same, so our job is to match eligible applications to each fund’s interests.


Current calls for applications

Supporting charities, community and voluntary projects within a 10 km radius of the Barmoor Wind Farm

The EDF Energy Renewables Barmoor Wind Farm Community Benefit Fund accepts applications from voluntary and community projects based within a ten km radius of the Barmoor Wind Farm, with priority given to those within a five km radius.

  • Grant Range: Applicants can apply for a minimum of £250 up to £10,000. In exceptional circumstances applications of up to £20,000 may be considered.
  • Closing Date: 13 March 2020

Supporting young people in Tyne & Wear, Northumberland and Durham

The Wellesley Trust Fund supports organisations working with young people in Northumberland, Tyne & Wear and County Durham, including Darlington. In this round, we’re welcoming applications for one-year projects, though where a project is of a continuing nature, the panel may wish to select exceptional projects for multi-year support. Organisations who received grants from the Fund in spring 2019 should not apply to this round.

  • Grant Range: £750-£10,000 for projects of up to one year in duration.
  • Closing Date: Monday 24 February 2020

Supporting community activity in Bellingham and the North Tyne Valley.

The Bellingham Fund is a small Community Foundation fund that makes grants in support of community activity in Bellingham and the North Tyne Valley. The fund primarily provides benefit to the Bellingham community, including Greenhaugh, Lane Head and Greystead areas, with support to this community prioritised over work elsewhere in the North Tyne Valley.

  • Grant Range: £750 - £2,000 (average grant size is around £1,000)
  • Closing Date: 9am Tuesday 14 April 2020

Sunderland voluntary groups supporting disadvantaged and disabled young people.

The Sir Tom Cowie Fund at the Community Foundation aims to give disadvantaged and disabled children and young people in Sunderland opportunities to fulfil their potential. The focus is on schemes which help young people achieve goals, improve skills and explore their talents.

  • Grant Range: £10,000 to £15,000
  • Closing Date: 12 noon on Monday 16 March 2020

Supporting capital projects within Whickham South and Sunniside Ward, Gateshead

The Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) Fund supports capital projects within Gateshead wards. This year, the CIL Fund expects to award six grants, of up to £5,000 each. Applications will be considered from voluntary, community and social enterprise sector organisations, based in Whickham South and Sunniside Ward.

  • Grant Range: Up to £5,000
  • Closing Date: 13 March 2020

Supporting organisations that benefit the residents of Eglingham Parish, Northumberland

Innogy Renewables Middlemoor Wind Farm Community Benefit Fund supports applications for both capital and revenue funding from charities and voluntary groups that are of direct benefit to the residents of Eglingham Parish.

  • Grant Range: £250 to £81,000 for groups and £250 to £2,000 for individuals
  • Closing Date: Monday 24 February 2020

The 1989 Willan Charitable Trust

Applicants must complete the 1989 Willan Charitable Trust application form. The Trust funds charitable activities benefitting residents of Tyne & Wear, Northumberland, County Durham and Teesside. Applications are administered by the Community Foundation. Priority goes to those which ease social deprivation and/or enrich the fabric of the local community, and the quality of life of individuals within that community.

  • Grant Range: £500 to £10,000

Children 10-13 learning about science

The Enviresearch Fund supports activities that inspire children aged 10 to 13 to learn about science by adding that extra 'wow factor' to the school curriculum through visits to museums, field trips, inviting scientists into schools and activities outside school.

  • Grant Range: £750 - £1,000 with one or two up to £4,000
  • Closing Date: Rolling grants programme

Improving life chances in Tyne & Wear and Northumberland

REEDS Grassroots Fund supports efforts to help groups that are tackling disadvantage and inequalities that limit the lives of individuals and groups.

  • Grant Range: £750 - £3,000
  • Closing Date: Rolling grants programme

Enhancing educational and vocational talent in Tyne & Wear and Northumberland

The Robert Wood Trust Fund provides grants to help groups enhance young people’s informal learning and achievements. Funding supports out of school activities that will enhance an individual’s personal development as they work towards further education and/or employment.

  • Grant Range: £750 - £2,000
  • Closing Date: Friday 14 February 2020

Newcastle Building Society Community Fund open for grant nominations

The Newcastle Building Society Community Fund offers grant opportunities for community organisations nominated by the Society’s customers in areas close to where their branches are located.

  • Grant Range: £750 - £3,000
  • Closing Date: 5pm Friday 17 April 2020

Promoting social inclusion; intergenerational activities and/or enabling access to the countryside in West Northumberland

The Blackett Family Community First Fund supports community focussed projects based in West Northumberland that address social isolation; encourage intergenerational activities and projects that enable access to the countryside.

  • Grant Range: £750 - £2,500
  • Closing Date: Friday 6 March 2020

Supporting community groups within a 5km radius of the Sisters and North Steads Wind Farm, with priority given to those within a 3km radius

Ventient Sisters and North Steads Wind Farm Community Benefit Fund supports applications for both capital and revenue funding from charities and voluntary groups that offer: advice and support for families, cares and those experiencing hardships, arts, culture and heritage projects, community activities and events, development of local amenities, education and training provision, environmental projects, healthy living activities, sport and physical activity provision

  • Grant Range: £750- £10,000
  • Closing Date: Monday 24 February 2020

Supporting grassroots charities with projects that have a link to the River Tyne

Frederick Milburn Fund supports projects related to activities on the river, those involving communities situated on the river or projects with a link to the heritage of the river ie. the shipyards or coal mining.

  • Grant Range: Usually up to £2,000; occasionally larger amounts available. Minimum grant size is £750
  • Closing Date: Friday 28 February 2020

Passionate about Realising Your Potential

The Curtin PARP Fund supports individuals in Tyne and Wear and Northumberland to realise their potential. The fund particularly prioritises support for carers of all ages, Black and Minority Ethnic people including those with asylum seeker/refugee status, disabled people, homeless people and people who are experiencing disadvantage that prevents them from realising their potential Examples of the types of activity the fund will support include: • Individuals undertaking courses which develop skills and talents. • Activities which develop skills and promote confidence and personal development. • Help to overcome barriers to employment/education

  • Grant Range: Grants of between £500 and £1,000 per year for up to three years, with the condition that evidence of attendance and progress/completion is provided for each year of study. One off-grants of between £500 and £1,000
  • Closing Date: Rolling grants programme

Applications needed for the P&G Fund at the Community Foundation

The P&G Fund offers grant under one of two main themes: 1) Creating the Experience of Home – to groups helping to provide homes with a level of basic comfort to people who cannot afford them or who have been displaced. 2) Everyday Health and Confidence - enabling healthy lives through everyday healthy behaviours linked to hygiene education.

  • Grant Range: £750 - £5,000
  • Closing Date: Friday 21 February 2020

Children and young people's community projects in New Hartley or Seaton Sluice

The Ted Weekes Fund provides grants to benefit children and young people’s projects based in Seaton Sluice or New Hartley.

  • Grant Range: £750 - £3,000
  • Closing Date: Monday 17 February 2020

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