Grants for voluntary and community organisations

Support for voluntary and community sector organisations

We offer support for voluntary and community sector (VCS) organisations in a number of ways:

  • awarding revenue grants
  • funding a VCS support service and voice and influence service
  • awarding charity and discretionary rate relief
  • agreeing reduced rents or preferential terms on council-owned buildings through Community Asset Transfers

New grant application process

We’ve changed the way we give grants to voluntary and community sector organisations.

Our grant application processes will be open from 1 September 2016.  

We’ll be updating this page between now and then to include more information.

For small grant applications you’ll also be able to download the small grants ‘Step 1’ form from this page to tell us that you are interested in applying.

The Step 1 form will be added here before 1 September 2016.

Application deadlines

The deadline for return of the small grant form will be Monday 26 September 2016.

For medium and large grants the deadline will be 7 November 2016.  

How to submit your application

Step 1: Read our prospectus

The VCS Grants Prospectus is a guide to this new way of making grants.

VCS Grants Prospectus full colour version (pdf, 2.9MB) (opens new window)

VCS Grants Prospectus printer friendly version (pdf, 484k) (opens new window)

You should read the VCS Grants Prospectus if you’re planning to apply for a grant as it tells you what information we need from you

Step 2: Register on ProContract

You must register your organisation on the ProContract system if you want  to apply for a medium or large grant, under the category ‘Provision of Services to the Community’.  

You should also include whatever other codes are relevant for your organisation so that you can be made aware of other opportunities that may be of interest to you when they arise.

We use an electronic system to manage this Bristol Impact Fund grants round and to communicate with applicants.  There’ll be no hard copy documents issued to applicants and all communications with us about the grants, including the submission of applications, will be through ProContract.

There are video tutorials on the ProContract Help Centre that you can use to help you use the system.

For support or advice, see Voscur’s website or contact the Grants Team.

Information sessions

We're holding three information sessions about the Bristol Impact Fund (the new VCS Grants prospectus pooled grant fund).  

At these sessions we’ll have a presentation about the Bristol Impact Fund application processes and information about registering on the new ProContract system.

The sessions will be:

Monday 12 September, 2:30pm to 4pm at The Park, Knowle West, Bristol, BS4 1DQ .

Use Eventbrite to reserve your space on the 12 September session.

Tuesday 13 September, 7:30pm to 9pm at The Vassall Centre, Fishponds, BS16 2QQ.

Use Eventbrite to reserve your space on the 13 September, session.

Tuesday 20 September, 3pm to 5:30pm at College Green, Bristol, BS1 5TR.

Use Eventbrite to reserve your space on the 20 September session.

Support service for Bristol’s VCS organisations

We've awarded Voscur funding to provide a VCS support service until 2020.

The two parts of this service are:

1. The Support Hub

The Support Hub helps Bristol-based voluntary and community sector (VCS) groups and organisations improve their performance, capacity, sustainability and quality.

2. The Voice and Influence service

The Voice and Influence service represents VCS groups and organisations in Bristol to help influence decisions on policy and development in the city.

Community Investment Strategy 2012 to 15

Grants allocated through the Community Investment Strategy have been extended to March 2017 while we co-design a new approach to the council’s grant funding.

The Community Investment Strategy ran from 1 April 2012 to 31 March 2015 and laid out the objectives for the Community Investment Budget.

The Investment Strategy is available from the Investment and Grants team.

Charity relief and discretionary business rate relief

Registered charities using buildings for charitable purposes are entitled  to mandatory rate relief. Voluntary and community organisations may also be eligible for discretionary rate relief.

Information about rate relief is available on business rates.

Community asset transfer

Community asset transfer (CAT) is where we lease properties to voluntary and community organisations, often at reduced or minimal rents, or preferential terms.

Information about CAT, community centres and buildings and Community Right to Bid are available from community centres and facilities.