Power to Change, the independent trust supporting community businesses in England, has announced that Round 5 of their Community Business Fund will open at the end of April. With £5 million available to be awarded in 2018, this will be the largest round of the fund in the trust’s history.
The Community Business Fund awards grants between £50,000 and £300,000 to established community businesses that need funding for a business development project to make their organisation more financially sustainable.
The 2018 Community Business Fund opens at 10am on Tuesday 24th April 2018 and applicants have until 12 noon on Tuesday 22nd May 2018 to apply.
Organisations can start to prepare their applications from today by visiting Power to Change’s website, downloading the guidance for applicants and the FAQs and signing up to their newsletter to be kept informed as to when the online application form goes live.
Following discussions that Community Energy England have had with Power to Change, they have included specific guidance for energy projects on page 11 of the guidance for applicants and in question 16 of the FAQs. Please note that the Community Business Fund only funds projects which will increase financial viability by the end of the project and so cannot fund feasibility projects. So far they have only funded energy efficiency measures for community buildings owned by the applicant organisation with the aim of improving financial viability.
If you feel that your energy project meets the Community Business Fund criteria, you should consider carefully before completing the application why grant funding is necessary to support your project and what other funding would be levered in by a grant. You should also consider the local community benefit that would be provided, in addition to tackling climate change.
Power to Change will also host a webinar on 26th April 2018 to give hopeful applicants an overview of the fund and its eligibility criteria. This is also a great opportunity for community businesses to ask any questions they might have about the application process. Register for the webinar here.
BE Group, Power to Change’s grant partner for the Community Business Fund, can answer any questions applicants have about this fund either by phone 0300 1240444, via email firstname.lastname@example.org, or via webchat.
The next round of the Community Business Fund will open in September 2018, with grant awards being made in early 2019. There will be further rounds in 2019.
For more information see here.