Funding news

BIG launches new funding strategy - 9 May 2012

Announcing its priorities in England to 2015, the Big Lottery Fund (BIG) will put hundreds of millions of pounds into long-term projects to tackle complex social problems in England’s neediest areas.

BIG said it could award between £100 million and £150 million in each of three or four cause areas to fund schemes lasting up to eight years.

The funder will decide on the geographical areas in England with the greatest need that it wants to target over the next few months for the long-term funding. Partnerships, which could include charities, community groups and councils, can apply for grants to develop their schemes and, if the pilots are successful, they can get longer-term funding.

One of the cause areas would be tackling entrenched problems such as alcoholism, drug abuse and domestic violence. Another would be projects for older people, and two more cause areas are yet to be announced.

Other announcements included:

  • Awards for All will be increased from £56 million in 2011/12 to £57 million in 2012/13. The scheme will continue to fund small community projects but also pay for groups to develop ideas to a stage at which they could apply for grants.
  • The introduction of online applications for Awards for All with decisions received in as little as one or two weeks compared with the four to five weeks it can take now.
  • The fund’s Reaching Communities programme will be increased from £148 million in 2011/12 to £150 million in 2012/13.
  • BIG is considering the use of social investment in some projects in various funding programmes, where appropriate, and helping projects develop the skills to attract social investors.
  • BIG anticipates that it will have £1.5 billion n of funding to 2015 or from £500 million to £600 million a year if existing levels of lottery ticket purchasing continue.

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