The National Lottery Community Fund (NLCF) has announced the launch of the UK Fund, a new grant scheme that will provide funding for organisations that want to help communities come together and make the UK a better-connected society.

The fund is open to UK-based registered charities, community interest companies, charitable incorporated organisations, community benefit societies, co-operative societies, constituted voluntary or community organisations, statutory bodies, companies limited by guarantee, and partnerships of organisations.

Grants of £500,000 to £5 million are available, and projects can run for up to 10 years.

The fund is looking to support projects that:

  • Strengthen relationships between people whose experiences of life have not been the same.
  • Create connections between online and offline worlds.
  • Help to ensure that people from all backgrounds can shape the future of their communities.

The funding can be used for:

  • staff costs, including sessional workers
  • development work (testing new ways of working, staff training and development, developing governance, tech or IT upgrades and purchases, sharing learning)
  • transport
  • utilities and running costs
  • volunteer expenses
  • learning and evaluation
  • equipment
  • capital costs (we can consider funding capital costs but do not expect these costs to be a significant amount of the proposed budget)
  • costs associated with delivering your project in other languages – for example, in Welsh.

Projects must demonstrate that they have the potential to benefit communities across the UK, scale their impact, and focus on equity.

There is no deadline and applications can be submitted at any time.

The UK Fund is one of the first significant commitments as part of the NLCF’s new strategy, “It starts with community.” The fund is part of the NLCF’s vision to help communities come together and create a more connected and equitable society.