Funding Support

For all third sector groups, funding is becoming increasingly hard to source with applications taking up time and resources that could be spent on delivering your services. We can help share the workload by:

  • Identifying potential sources of funding
  • Working with you to submit a comprehensive funding application, including writing sections of the form for you
  • Advising on monitoring and evaluation systems to report back to funders
  • Helping with project planning and writing business plans
  • Reviewing the structure of your group including governance for financial strength

We are able to help you to identify funding sources and to provide support with your funding application. If you would like to receive further information please contact VAO by email here or telephone 01856 872897

Another great way to see what funding is available is to visit Funding Scotland website:

Funding Scotland lists funders with a track record of supporting projects in Scotland. It includes grants, loans, prizes and other support. It is a valuable resource for charities, community groups, social enterprises and voluntary organisations of all shapes and sizes. It does not include funding opportunities for individuals or businesses.

Please click here to visit their website.

Applying for funding – The ultimate guide from the big lottery click here

For full details on funding opportunities please see the links below, these are listed in the Month they will be closing.

Training and Funding News – October 2021

Covid Specific funding Opportunities 

Current Funding Opportunities

BBC Children in Need- Grant Information Session

The latest @BBCCiN funding programme is now open. Click here to find out how to apply.

The team in Scotland’s hosting a virtual session on Thurs 10 December at 10am for anyone interested in finding out more. Email for details and to RSVP.

Vulnerable Citizens and the EU Settlement Scheme

The two-part webinar “Vulnerable Citizens and the EU Settlement Scheme” is designed for social workers, case workers and/or volunteers supporting vulnerable citizens (looked after children, elderly, homeless, people struggling with their mental health, people with disabilities, Roma/Travellers/Gypsy communities, people with language or IT barriers), as there might be some EU/EEA/Swiss nationals, or relatives of EU/EEA/Swiss (including non-EU citizens) among their service users.

Closing Date October 2020

Next Step Initiative-Comic Relief Grant Programme Now Open

We are delighted to announce that Next Step Initiative (NSI) is partnering with Comic Relief as an intermediary providing financial support as well as improved vital capacity to Black Minority Ethnic (BME) community groups across Scotland. This is in recognition of the disproportionate impact that Covid-19 has had on Black and Asian communities, and to help address these inequalities as part of Comic Relief’s  wider Covid-19 crisis response.

Closing Date November 2020

Better Breaks

The Better Breaks programme provides 12 month grants to third sector organisations to develop and deliver short breaks projects and services for disabled children and young people (aged 20 and under), and their carers (adult carers and/or young carers).

£1M funding for short breaks projects for disabled children and young people (aged 20 and under) and their carers: APPLY NOW!

The Better Breaks programme provides 12 month grants to third sector organisations to develop and deliver short breaks projects and services for disabled children and young people (aged 20 and under), and their carers (adult carers and/or young carers).


Closing Date October 2020

Lottery- Leaders with lived experience 2020

Supporting organisations set up or run by people with first-hand experience of a social issue, who are trying to create positive change for communities and people who share those experiences. This funding will support lived experience leadership, and make sure lived experience plays a key role in shaping how communities move towards recovery and renewal after the impact of COVID-19.

£20,000 to £50,000

Jules Thorn Trust – Hospice fund

The Trust has simplified the application process and amended its normal eligibility criteria. The available funding will be used to provide one-off grants of up to £5,000 to support hospices’ core costs.

National Lottery Virtual Funding Talk

Wednesday 7th October 2020 @ 7pm on Zoom

Voluntary Action Orkney are delighted to be able to offer this virtual session to find out about funding opportunities from the National Lottery. Take advantage and book to find out about funding that could benefit your organisation.


Closing Date November 2020

Historic Environment Recovery Fund

Grants will be available under two funding streams for costs to be incurred before 31 March 2021, with the aim of helping to address immediate needs relating to re-opening to the public; protecting jobs, capacity and skills; and enabling organisations to undertake planning to regain longer-term financial sustainability and adapt to new ways of working

The object of the Alice McCosh Trust is to advance education by providing or assisting with grants for work or study related to natural history and/or the environment. The grant could, for example, cover the cost of a school field trip or project, an expedition as part of a research project or the development of new teaching materials for schools or institutes of higher education.

Minimum: £600 Maximum: £1,000

Weston Culture fund

This £25 million fund is designed to support mid to large scale cultural organisations in the UK to help them restart work, re-engage with audiences, adapt to changed circumstances and generate revenue. The fund is specifically for charitable organisations with a pre-Covid regular annual income of £500,000 or greater; smaller organisations will be able to apply for our regular grants programme via our website as usual.

British Science Event Grants

Kick Start scheme offers grants for schools in challenging circumstances to organise their own events as part of British Science Week up to £450.

Youth Arts Access Fund

This Access Fund builds on Access to Music Making to use the new Youth Arts Fund to support an increased range of music-making projects, as well as introducing projects which deliver across wider art form areas.

Sport Scotland facilities fund

The fund supports capital projects that create or improve places that people take part in sport and physical activity. Awards of up to £100,000 are available for sports facility projects within club & communities, school & education or performance sport environments. In clubs and communities, they will support: new, upgraded or extended sports facilities; Inclusive changing facilities; facilities that provide or improve access for outdoor sport and adventure activities; floodlights that increase capacity at appropriate sports facilities; major items of sports equipment. They will provide enhanced support to projects within or serving the most deprived communities, according to the Scottish Index of Multiple Deprivation (SIMD).


Closing Date December 2020

Scottish Action Fund- Communities Foundation

The FCC Scottish Action Fund provides grants of between £2,000 and £40,000 to not-for-profit organisations for the following types of projects eligible under Scottish Landfill Communities Fund (SLCF).


Closing Date March 2021

Applications for the Postcode Recovery Fund can be made from today (1 October) until Friday 30 October.

The successful applications will be announced in March 2021.

Resilient and Inclusive Communities Fund

The Resilient & Inclusive Communities Fund is a small grant programme from BEMIS, funded by Foundation Scotland from the Response, Recovery and Resilience Fund, for diverse Ethnic Minority community groups and organisations to set up programmes and services supporting disadvantaged and excluded communities

Community & Third Sector Recovery Programme

The Community & Third Sector Recovery Programme aims to support charities, community groups, social enterprises and voluntary organisations that are supporting people and communities through the shift from lockdown to recovery. As well as providing ongoing crisis support, they will be planning and implementing changes to adapt and thrive in a very different social and economic climate.


No Closing Date

Community Climate Asset Fund

As Scotland emerges from COVID-19, we have a chance to build a greener, fairer and more equal society and economy.

The climate emergency has not gone away and Scottish Ministers remain absolutely committed to a just transition to net-zero emissions by 2045.

The Community Climate Asset Fund (CCAF) is a Scottish Government fund, administered by Keep Scotland Beautiful.


Zero Waste Scotland – Circular Economy Investment Fund

The Circular Economy Investment Fund is inviting small to medium sized enterprises and non-profit organisations to submit proposals of innovative projects that have the ability to deliver carbon savings, leverage investment and create jobs.  To find out more, or to apply see here.

Sylvia Waddilove Foundation- Covid-19 Emergency Fund

The Foundation has set up an emergency fund to help small to medium sized organisations who are struggling to manage the financial impact of COVID-19 either because of increased demand for their services or loss of income. The fund is targeted at organisations in a critical position. The organisation must operate in one of the following categories: education relating to non-domestic animals; visual and performing arts; medical research; the relief of disability or severe illness; the accommodation of those in need

Robertson Trust- new funding

The Robertson Trust offer both revenue and capital funding for registered charities and constituted community groups that help people and communities in Scotland who are living with poverty and trauma

Community Building & Vehicle Grants

Two more Grants from the Robertson Trust

  • Community Vehicle Grants: For registered charities with an annual income of between £25,000 and £2 million, these offer funding of up to £10,000 for a vehicle to support your work.
  • Community Building Grants: For registered charities with an annual income of between £25,000 and £2 million, these offer funding of up to £75,000 towards ‘community hubs’.

The National Lottery Community Fund (Scotland) – Community Led Activity

Funding to support communities to bring real improvements to the places they live and the wellbeing of those in need. They will fund organisations to deliver work that achieves the following outcomes: Everyone in the community has the opportunity to influence and get involved in community led activity; people in the community are better connected and work together to improve their wellbeing. The National Lottery Community Fund is the new name for the Big Lottery.

Funding to Connect People with Others in Their Local Communities

Barchester’s Charitable Foundation is a registered charity that helps older people and other adults with a disability across England, Scotland & Wales. This year our focus is about connecting or re-connecting people with others in their local community. Applications that combat loneliness and enable people to be active and engaged will receive our highest priority in 2018.

National Lottery Awards for all offers funding to support what matter to people and communities

This fund has a relatively high success rate and can help your organisation deliver projects, acquire equipment, or try something new. National Lottery Awards for All has three funding priorities and you must be able to tell us in your application how your project or activity will:

  • bring people together and build strong relationships in and across communities
  • improve the places and spaces that matter to communities
  • enable more people to fulfil their potential by working to address issues at the earliest possible stage

The Esmée Fairbairn Collections Fund Accepting Applications

The Esmée Fairbairn Collections Fund, run by the Museums Association, funds projects which develop collections to achieve social impact

Funding for young people to take part in their communities.

ILF (Independent Living Fund) Scotland has opened an exciting new fund (totalling £5 million per year) for young people who need support in Scotland.

New Names for Lottery Funders

The  Big Lottery Fund, the UK’s largest community funder – which distributes 40% of the good cause money raised by National Lottery players – will now be called The National Lottery Community Fund.

A fresh new identity and name – from Heritage Lottery Fund to The National Lottery Heritage Fund – is designed to thank National Lottery players and help people better understand the difference they make when they buy a ticket.

Local charities and good causes are being encouraged to apply for funding of over £3 million that has been raised by the players of People’s Postcode Lottery

Circular Economy Investment Fund

We are investing £18 million as grant funding to small and medium sized enterprises who are helping to create a more circular economy.  The Circular Economy Investment Fund is a funding opportunity for businesses and organisations in Scotland working in all business and social economy sectors.

Funding for young people to take part in their communities.

ILF (Independent Living Fund) Scotland has opened an exciting new fund (totalling £5 million per year) for young people who need support in Scotland. The Transition Fund supports those aged between 16 and 21, offering short term grants to provide opportunities that facilitate their participation and inclusion within their communities. You can find out more about the fund here. 

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