The successor to 2012′s A Year of Service is Together in Service, a programme supported by the government and offering small grants, if matched by a similar amount from another source, to local faith-based groups. The government website includes the programme under the policy Bringing people together in strong, united communities, which says
Together in Service is a 3-year programme to celebrate and link up faith-based social action. A Together in Service fund of up to £300,000 over 3 years is available in the form of small grants for multi-faith projects. Up to £1,000 will be on offer to help get local projects off the ground in areas where there may be a lack of confidence or knowledge in undertaking volunteering work in a multi-faith way.
The programme is being run by FaithAction, which has set up a special website. You need to join the Together in Service Fellowship (which offers news, resources & a calendar of events) in order to download the application form and apply for funding. The Grant Application Pack gives a good idea of what the government hopes to support:
FaithAction will be administering an annual pot of £160,000. This is available as 1:1 match-funding for small grants of £2,000 and £5,000 – the Together in Service Fund – to facilitate new multi-faith social action projects at a local level, where there is often a lack of confidence in undertaking volunteering work in a multi-faith way.
FaithAction wishes to support a wide range of activities aimed at improving the quality of life for local people.
Through our grant making, we aim to:
- Target community need that is informed by local research and local consultation
- Focus support to achieve maximum effectiveness
- Enhance community and voluntary activity
- Encourage best practice among community and voluntary groups
- Give help where it is needed most
The focus on local work and the wide range of social action activities which will be considered means that many multifaith groups in London are likely to be eligible.
The fund will be launched this Thursday 21 November 10am – 12 noon at Westminster Cathedral Hall with Rt Hon Eric Pickles MP, Rt Hon Stephen Timms MP and FaithAction’s Director, Daniel Singleton. Details of how to register for this are here.
Shall we talk about this, and maybe a wider conversation about the resourcing of local and voluntary activities, at our next meeting in the new year? In the meantime, let’s hope there are plenty of successful applications in London.