Comic Relief – Core Strength

Comic Relief will be investing £4 million through this initiative with approximately 100 organisations receiving grants for core funding across the UK.

NB – Please note, this programme is partly funded by HM Treasury’s ‘Tampon Tax’ to help tackle the various issues that many women and girls face. Therefore, out of the £4 million available through this pilot programme, a minimum of £1 million will be awarded to organisations working primarily to support women and girls.

They define ‘core funding’ as a grant that will pay towards the core costs of running an organisation, including salaries, overheads and day-to-day running costs such as rent, heating and lighting. As well as running costs, they will also award grants to support specific work that will strengthening organisations for the future. This could include improving leadership and governance, or planning and development.

Here are some examples of the kind of work which they might fund through this programme:

  • Strategic planning and policy improvement – including business planning; fundraising strategies; income generation; policy and procedure reviews.
  • Planning to improve structures and systems that will improve efficiency and quality – including financial controls; human resources; management of volunteers; risk management; monitoring frameworks; impact assessment; accredited quality marks.
  • Improvements in leadership and governance – including review of board/committee policy and practice; Trustee training; involving users; change management; new skills development e.g. around social entrepreneurship.
  • General running costs – including rent, lighting, heating or contributions towards salaries.


They welcome proposals for up to £40,000 over 24 months of activity (£20,000 each year) from organisations in the UK that:

  • deliver services in one of our programme areas (at least 75% of an organisation’s activity must fit one of these themes).
  • have been in existence for at least five years, are embedded in their community and are committed to creating long-term change.
  • can demonstrate regional or local significance and can work with us to raise awareness of the important issues they are tackling in their area.
  • work in areas of significant disadvantage, deprivation or poverty, including rural isolation.
  • have an annual income of between £100,000 – £500,000.
  • have a current organisational plan and budget covering the period to at least 2017.
  • do not have more than one year’s unrestricted reserves (not including fixed assets).

If an organisation is already in receipt of funding from Comic Relief, they may only apply for core funding through this programme if their current grant is due to expire within 12 months. Please see their grant making policies which details our eligibility criteria for all organisations applying to Comic Relief for funding.

You can submit your proposal for core funding from 16th June 2016 to midday 27th July 2016.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *