20 July 2020
Community Justice Fund
Flexible grants available for specialist social welfare legal advice organisations to cope with the immediate impact of the coronavirus/COVID-19 pandemic and lay the foundations for longer-term renewal.
Specialist social welfare legal advice organisations can apply for grants to help them be effective and sustainable in the face of responding to COVID-19. Organisations must be working in the UK and be registered with the relevant Charity Commission.
To be eligible they also must:
- Be able to demonstrate a track record of delivering legal advice in one or more of the following areas of law: asylum, community care, debt, disability, discrimination, education, employment, housing, immigration, mental health, public and administrative law and welfare benefits
- Be able to demonstrate a track record in delivering advice at specialist level including carrying out end-to-end casework for clients, carrying out representation in a court or tribunal and/or holding legal aid contract
The size of grant awarded will depend on different factors, including the size of the organisation and the cost and scale of the support needed. Most grants will be in the range of £25,000 to £75,000 but this range is indicative and organisations can apply for less than £25,000 if that is what is needed. The Fund may also be able to make grants larger than £75,000 in certain circumstances.
During the first wave of funding, eligible organisations can use the grants in ways that they feel best meets their needs, for example for:
- “Keeping the doors open”
- Making the necessary shifts to home working
- Maintaining services
- Adapting services to reach people in new ways and at greater scale
- Supporting the wellbeing of staff
Costs that can be covered by the grant include:
- One-off purchases
- Sessional worker’s fees
- Costs of local or temporary staff
- Promotion of partnership approaches
- General contribution of funding to help cashflow
The first wave of funding is currently open for applications on a rolling weekly basis.