Sport England Community Emergency Fund – Apply HERE

This new fund aims to help community sport and physical activity organisations who are experiencing short term financial hardship or the ceasing of operations due to the ongoing coronavirus crisis.

About the fund

As the country deals with coronavirus (Covid-19), we know sport and physical activity organisations are facing a hugely difficult period of time.

Our Community Emergency Fund aims to deliver immediate funding to those most in need. It’s specifically targeted at organisations, including those not currently supported by us, who have a role in supporting the nation to be active but who are experiencing short term financial hardship or the ceasing of operations due to the ongoing crisis.

The types of organisations eligible include local sports clubs forced to close at short notice but who are facing ongoing costs around maintenance and utility bills, and voluntary and community sector organisations who deliver or enable sport and physical activity.

This £20 million fund is designed to complement other sources of funding from the government, such as funds targeted at small businesses. Please click here to see the funding support that the government has available before you consider applying to this fund.

Young people enjoying sport and physical activity

Who and what we’ll fund

Who we’ll fund

Any organisation delivering community sport and physical activity can apply to our fund if it’s experiencing short term financial hardship or the ceasing of operations due to the impact of coronavirus.

These organisations include:

  • Local sports clubs
  • Voluntary and community sector organisations that deliver or enable sport and/or physical activity, including organisations that are not solely or primarily sports organisations and have an important role to play in keeping people active, that may need support for other parts of their organisation to remain open
  • Small charitable trusts that do not qualify for financial help elsewhere
  • Regional or county level organisations or leagues that have already paid out funds for activities that are now cancelled and are not able to claim funds from elsewhere.

What we’ll fund

The fund has been developed to help community sport and physical activity organisations meet their obligations, in particular fixed costs, which are no longer supported with revenue as a result of coronavirus. This might cover expenditure on:

  • Rent
  • Utility costs
  • Insurances
  • Facility or equipment hire
  • Core staffing costs (including casual workers) that cannot be met elsewhere by other government funds
  • Retrospective losses dating from 1 March, 2020.

Some examples of the sort of things our fund can help with are:

  • Support a boxing club to pay for their utility bills and other costs for their facility when no activity is taking place
  • Support a local league who have paid for equipment to run a competition which is now cancelled and therefore will not receive the money the players in the league would have paid.

Who the fund’s not able to help

This fund is designed to help grassroots sport and physical activity providers. This means we’re not able to help the following organisations with this fund.

  • Local authorities, including town and parish councils
  • Schools, colleges and universities
  • Commercial sport and physical activity providers, e.g. private gyms
  • Leisure operators
  • Individuals who are either employed or self-employed within the sport and physical activity sector.

Any organisation or individuals who can access support through the government’s financial packages should do so in the first instance. We’ll review the availability of these packages on an ongoing basis.

What our funding can’t be used for

Funding cannot be used for:

  • Activities or costs which are already covered by other government funding, including rates
  • New activities or events – please see our other funding programmes for this
  • Capital works
  • Costs beyond the end of July 2020.

How much we’ll fund

Awards will be between £300 and £10,000. In exceptional circumstances we’ll consider awards of more than £10,000.

A boxer goes through a drill

Key things to note before applying

We expect that applicants will have exhausted all other government funding sources before applying to this fund.

Given the enormity of the current crisis, we’re likely to get more applications than we can fund so we’ll direct funds to where they’re most needed.

Number of applications

Our expectation is that organisations will only apply once to this fund for the immediate period, from 1 March through to 31 July, 2020.

But we recognise the changing situation that we’re all in, so we’ll continue to review whether organisations might need ‘top-up’ awards or to make a second application depending on the period of disruption.

Fund criteria

Please read the four criteria below for our Community Emergency Fund before you apply:

  • 1. Audience/reach

    We’ll prioritise organisations whose work does one or more of the following:

  • 2. The role you play

    The organisation has actively delivered or enabled community sport and/or physical activity in the last 12 months and is proactively staying in touch with participants in this period.

  • 3. Financial need

    The organisation can demonstrate clear financial need as a result of the current situation.

  • 4. Impact of not receiving funding

    The organisation demonstrates the consequences of not receiving funding, and how this impacts on the organisation’s ability to deliver sport and physical activity, with particular reference to the audience groups named in criterion 1 – audience/reach.

What happens after I’ve applied?

Once you’ve submitted your application form, we’ll assess it against our fund criteria.

We aim to get back in touch with every applicant within seven to 10 working days of your submission.

Frequently asked questions

  • How does Sport England funding work with wider government and other sources of support? Can we apply for all?

    Sport England funding should be your last option. Please check whether your organisation is eligible for support from other government sources or other funding programmes before applying to the Community Emergency Fund.

  • I have an existing funding relationship/project with Sport England, can I still apply for the fund?

    If you have an existing funding arrangement /project which is live with Sport England, please get in touch with your case manager/relationship manager before you make an application.

  • I can’t access other government support and my organisation doesn’t fit the fund. What else can I do?

    Please send an email to coronavirus@sportengland.org explaining your situation. Please also check our website for alternative sources of investment.

  • Can staff costs be included in our funding request?

    Costs for casual staff can be included if it’s important for you to retain/support these workers through your time of shutdown.

  • Will the fund support players’ wages, salaries or expenses?

    No. The Community Emergency Fund is aimed at community grassroots sport and physical activity.

  • Can we still apply to the fund if we have cash reserves in the bank?

    The Community Emergency Fund is aimed at those community organisations which need it most.

Apply to the fund

If you’ve read the information on this page and want to now apply to the Community Emergency Fund, complete our application form by clicking on the button below.

Apply now

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