The Covid Winter Support Fund makes grants of up to £5,000 to voluntary, community and social enterprise (VCSE) organisations, mutual aid groups, and town and parish councils across East Sussex and West Sussex, to enable these groups and organisations to meet the identified winter needs of families, children and young people.
This fund has its own criteria and application form.
The fund is primarily focused on supporting households with children, and households experiencing, or at risk of experiencing, poverty during the pandemic.
Funding can also be used to provide support via with food, energy and water bills for household purposes (including drinking, washing, cooking, central heating, and sanitary purposes) and sewerage. This includes flexibility about the proportion of support allocated to food and to bills.
A portion of funding can be used to provide support with other (including sanitary products, warm clothing, soap, blankets, boiler service/repair, purchase of equipment including fridges, freezers, ovens, etc.), in recognition that a range of costs may arise which directly affect a household’s ability to afford or access food, energy and water.
Funding is not intended to cover payment of rent or other housing costs, as these are not directly related to food or utility bills and other benefits, nor is it intended to be used for the provision of general advice on managing debt and/or financial hardship.
VCSE organisations, mutual aid groups, and town and parish councils supporting households with energy and water bills for household purposes (including drinking, washing, cooking, central heating, and sanitary purposes) and sewerage, are encouraged where possible to do this via vouchers rather than cash payments.
The following are examples of the kinds of activities that might be funded:
- VCSE organisations that work with or provide existing support to families, children and young people;
- mutual aid groups that have been established to support people and communities during the Covid-19 pandemic;
- town and parish councils that are actively working in partnership with local groups to support families, children, and young people.
Recipients of funding are encouraged to work in partnership with local groups and communities to identify those in need of the most support.
Fund recipients will be asked to complete a simple monitoring form that will include:
- What activities were carried out
- A financial breakdown of spend against criteria
- The primary beneficiary age group
- The impact and outcomes achieved.