New secure online grants portal launched for people experiencing financial hardship

People experiencing financial hardship can now use a new online grants portal to access support from different charities. 

The Association of Charitable Organisations (ACO) worked with grant-making charities and social impact start up Lightning Social Ventures to create the tool. 

Using a single application, ACO said the grants system will allow people in financial hardship to find and apply for grants from multiple providers quickly, easily and securely. Its aim is to reduce the paperwork and stress involved in applying for grants. 

An early beta version of the tool is available, having been tested with the charities the Smallwood Trust, Teaching Staff Trust and the Electrical Industries Charity joining as early pilot partners.

The beta version of the grant-making tool will be piloted over the next six months, ACO has said. 

The Social Innovation Council

This beta initiative has been named the Social Innovation Council and involves the Smallwood Trust, Turn2us, The Charity for Civil Servants, End Furniture Poverty and the Royal British Legion.

The project has been largely funded pro-bono by Lightning Social Ventures, with external funding received through a combination of grants and investments. Founding partners also contributed a small participation costs of the Social Innovation Council.

Other funders and charities are able to join the portal now.

With 15 million people facing poverty in the UK following the Covid-19 pandemic and the rises to costs of living, the initiative feels its new tool is “critical to ensure that support is accessible to those who need it”.

You can sign up to find and apply for support from multiple providers quickly and easily, using the secure online portal HERE.

Source: Civil Society. The full article can be accessed HERE.