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Grants available for voluntary and community sector mental health organisations in England

Mind have published a list of grants available for voluntary and community sector mental health organisations in England. Full information and links can be found on the Mind website: https://www.mind.org.uk/news-campaigns/campaigns/coronavirus-mental-health-response-fund/

Grants are to support organisations around the increase in need as a direct result of the coronavirus pandemic.  Funding is available to either:

  • Scale up existing activity – for example, managing a helpline or a forum that is experiencing an unprecedented amount of requests
  • Adapt existing activity – for example, an organisation which has traditionally delivered all of their services in-person and now want to adapt them in order to continue meeting the needs of existing, or new, service users
  • Introduce new activity – an organisation may want to introduce a new service that will meet the specific needs of service users that arise due, in part, to the coronavirus crisis

Large grants: up to £50,000

Small grants: up to £20,000. The minimum grant available is £5,000.

Organisations can only apply for one grant, regardless of grant size. For organisations applying for work across at least three English regions, the fund will consider awards of up to £100,000.

There are different application forms for large and small grants. All grants will be scored against the same criteria.

Applications are accepted on an ongoing basis from fund go-live date (April 2020), and will be accepted until the funding pot is allocated (anticipated to be within 8-10 weeks).

Application form available here: https://www.mind.org.uk/media/35350546/cmhrf-application-reference-only.pdf

Funding available is for twelve months of delivery, but the application form will only ask organisations to specify how they intend to respond to immediate needs in the first three months of delivery (between May – August 2020, depending on when activity starts). If the application is successful, there will be a requirement for monthly catch-ups in this initial period in order to understand experiences and how organisations are managing emerging challenges.

The application will ask for an outline of:

  • Plans for the coming months
  • Track record of the organisation in delivering services similar to the one being proposed.
  • The organisation’s experience of involving people with lived experience of mental health problems in leadership roles.

The funders are particularly targeting service users who have overlapping dimensions of health inequalities (there is a useful diagram in the guidance notes to give more details on this).

Types of activity the fund is looking to support (not an exhaustive list)

  • Befriending support 121 – volunteer or paid support offered via telephone, or video call, provided by befrienders/peers with lived experience of a mental health problem, or demonstrable experience in mental health, in order to support building social connection and empathy
  • Support or advice worker – a paid worker offering support. Able to offer more expertise than a befriender, including signposting to other supports and services.
  • Peer support – 121 or group, via telephone or online by peers with lived experience of a mental health problem for other peers.
  • Navigator roles – drawing on existing expertise in supporting people to continue to e.g. access benefits, pay bills if unwell/self-isolating.
  • Practical help – including support whilst in self-isolation, e.g. with basic supplies

Full guidance notes here: https://www.mind.org.uk/media/35350543/cmhrf-guidance-160420-v1.pdf

More information about the application process can be sought from the Mind Network Investment Team: networkinvestment@mind.org.uk

In addition to this, there is also support for smaller organisations or groups.  As part of this funding programme, the National Survivor User Network (NSUN) will be administering a fund to support user-led organisations and smaller, un-constituted community organisations, who might not otherwise be eligible for a grant. Details will be available from Monday 20 April on the NSUN website: http://www.nsun.org.uk/

Posted on 1st May 2020 in Coronavirus, Finance info/funding