Grant Programmes 2020-2023


It is vital in these emergency circumstances that our limited resources serve the neediest people in the most efficient way. We understand that most charities in Northern Ireland will face significant pressure on their finances, and also that some activities will now be impractical under social distancing restrictions. Some charities may need to freeze their work, while others will need to ramp up their activities. Our funding will look to support work which reduces or mitigates the impact of the coronavirus – and allows essential services to be provided - for those most in need.

In order to ensure our resources go to those who need us most, please ensure the following:

  • Only propose projects which reduce or mitigate the impact of the coronavirus, or allow essential charitable activities to continue, for those most in need.
  • Understand what other charities and the government is doing in your field, and ensure that what you propose fits in. We publish details of grants awarded, as do other funders to ensure non duplication and to identify funding gaps.
  • Use your reserves where you can - priority will be given to charities who do not have high levels of unrestricted reserves. Take advantage of the government schemes where eligible.


We will not fund salaries and overheads of charities which are not able to deliver their services at this time. Nor will we fund salary costs which are covered by the Government Job Retention Scheme (further information here - HMRC Job Retention Scheme ). However, we may be able to support you as we move out of the emergency phase.

Grants are only open to charities operating in Northern Ireland

Income under £1m

In order for organisations to be eligible, they must have an income of less than £1 million as shown in most recent set of accounts. (For registered charities with a Headquarters based outside Northern Ireland, the income of their Northern Ireland operation will be the figure used to assess eligibility).

Crisis Support

We will only consider applications from charities that are active during this crisis period and providing support to their users/the community. If your charity is closed during this period, we cannot support your costs during closure. Please contact your service provider(s) for support. We will open again following the crisis period for 'recovery' support, reinstating our small and medium grants programmes. 

Charitable Status

The following groups may apply:

  • Charities registered with the Charity Commission
  • Charities 'deemed' on CCNI's combined list
  • 'Non-deemed' on CCNI's combined list, provided they can supply their HMRC letter confirming charitable status
  • Constituted groups with a governing document, board of trustees/directors and a recent set of accounts (£1,000 max award) **TEMPORARY CRITERIA UNTIL 30 JUNE 2020

You cannot apply for emergency support if:

  • Your request is not related to coronavirus or its immediate effects
  • Your request can be covered by Statutory/Government support
  • Your request is to cover costs where you have ceased to provide activities or support
  • Your request is for general running costs such as rent, insurance etc unless you can show the direct immediate impact on the curtailment or withdrawal of your activities or support on those in need and you have taken steps to reduce the costs
  • You have sufficient cash reserves or an alternative source of funding
  • Your request is not for immediate urgent need but for recovery phase




Apply here for Small Grants

Small Grant Guidance



We are not accepting applications for the next phase at the moment. In due course, we will reinstate our small and medium grants programmes. Please check back here for updates. Here you may be able to apply for support that will help you adapt and recover.

We will not penalise charities who received a grant at the emergency stage from applying in the next phase(s).



Should you have any further queries, please email us on


Useful Links

NICVA - COVID-19 Support  

Department for Communities COVID-19 updates 







Closing Date

Contact Us

11-15 Donegall Square North


T: 028 9032 3000

Registered in Northern Ireland Number 19019

Accepted as a charity by the Inland Revenue under reference NIC 101763

Follow Us