We are building resources to help not-for-profits. This list includes emergency grant funding and links to official help and guidance. It will be updated regularly as the situation is rapidly changing. Please check back using this link Covid-19: Help for not-for-profits
. This article was last updated on 30 June.
Sections updated are as follows:
- Governance and managing your charity
- Financial help
Newer updates appear first.
Dudley CVS group support staff will still be on hand for email and remote conversations to offer support. If you need to get in touch, please email email@example.com and your email will be directed to the most appropriate member of staff. We ask that you bear with us while we work to co-ordinate the community response to Covid-19, so it may take some time to get back to you.
NAVCA is also regularly updating its list of useful links and resources for managing your organisation across a variety of topics: https://navca.org.uk/vcse-resources-hub
One of the most useful things that organisations can do is to think about how their organisation will cope if a high proportion of their staff or volunteers become ill or unavailable at the same time, and what steps you might take to avoid this happening. Many of these steps involve reducing the time people spend together in order to reduce the chances of Coronavirus spreading between them (and affecting a lot of the people you work with at the same time).
Remember that people may be unable to work even if they have not become ill themselves – it could be, for example, because schools have closed and people need to stay at home to care for their children or grandchildren.
Voluntary organisations and community groups may find useful information on the government’s guidance for businesses and voluntary sector organisations
. It includes information on when employees should stay away from work, how to respond to employees who need to take time off work, and how to clean premises after someone develops Coronavirus. It also includes 8 different guides for different types of workplace, ranging from offices to shops.
Governance and managing your organisation
- NCVO is offering a range of webinars to help charities and not-for-profits negotiate each stage of the pandemic. Its webinars are shared on YouTube. The most recent webinar released is on the easing of lockdown and covers legal and practical considerations for returning to work.
- Eversheds Sutherland has put together a checklist for not-for-profits to consider when they are thinking about reopening.
- St John Ambulance has released a free tool and is offering advice on working safely during the pandemic.
- The Charity Commission has published Covid-19 guidance for the charity sector, including paying staff, using charity reserves, holding remote meetings and postponing AGMs.
- Companies (including charitable companies and CICs) can apply to Companies House for a 3 month extension if they cannot file their accounts on time due to Covid-19. Please note that you will have to apply to do this before your filing deadline. Charities will that apply to Companies House for an extension will still need to contact the Charity Commission if their trustees annual reports and accounts will be delayed, using the link above.
- On 20 May the Government published the Corporate Insolvency and Governance Bill 2020. This is to help give flexibility to incorporated organisations like CIOs, charitable companies and mutuals that need to hold members meetings in lockdown. This might include the ability to hold virtual meetings even if there is no provision in the governing document. The Bill will be in place until the end of September, unless it is extended. Bates Wells has produced guidance on this.
- The CIC Regulator has published Covid-19 guidance for CICs. It recognises that CICs may have to suspend their activities temporarily, which may mean they are not delivering community benefit. This can be reported in your annual CIC report.
- NCVO has published guidance for not-for-profits on a whole range of topics such as sick leave, protecting staff and volunteers, holding events, supporting beneficiaries, finance and business continuity. The page is regularly updated.
- NCVO has also produced a blog explaining what trustees should be thinking about in relation to Covid-19 and their operations. This includes scenario planning and assessing risks, exploring lines of authority and how quick decisions can be legitimately made and recorded, prioritising essential work, exploring with funders any flexibility in terms of funded projects, their scope, delivery and reporting, exploring the use of technology for meetings and some work, the impact of the crisis on an organisation's ability to meet its reporting requirements.
- NAVCA is regularly updating its list of useful links and resources for managing your organisation across a variety of topics: https://navca.org.uk/vcse-resources-hub
- Acas employment advice: https://www.acas.org.uk/coronavirus
- HR specialists Cronerare offering unlimited free access to its HR and employment law helpline to all voluntary sector organisations.Business continuity planning for charities and voluntary organisations from the Charity Finance Group: https://www.cfg.org.uk/covid19_what_planning_should_charities_be_undertaking
- Eventbrite has produced guidance on holding, postponing and cancelling events
Government measures announced to support small businesses also apply to charities and other not-for-profits. These include:
1. The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme, also known as 'furlough'.
Currently, you can Claim for 80% of your employees' wages plus any employer National Insurance and pension contributions, if you have put them on furlough because of coronavirus (COVID-19). This is capped at £2,500 per month per employee and you can choose to top up payments to 100%.
Remember that any furloughed member of staff cannot work or volunteer for you while they are furloghed.
This scheme will continue in its current form until the end of July.
From August, the scheme will be adapted to allow furloughed workers to work part time. This will be continued until October, but may include employers having to contribute to the scheme.
NCVO has a useful round up of the furlough rules
To apply for please visit the government webpage
The following two packages of government support are being administered by local authorities.
2. Business rate grant
Grants of up to £10,000 for any business (including not-for-profits) with a rateable value of up to £15,000, regardless of their area of work.
3. Retail, Hospitality and Leisure Grant Fund
The Retail, Hospitality and Leisure Grant Fund (RHLGF) supports businesses and charities in the retail, hospitality and leisure sectors with their business costs during coronavirus.
Properties eligible for the grant will be those that are wholly or mainly being used as a hospitality, retail, or leisure venue, such as a:
The government has confirmed
- restaurant, café, bar or pub
- cinema or live music venue
- estate agent or letting agency
- assembly or leisure property - for example, a bingo hall, a sports club, a gym or spa
- hospitality property - for example, a hotel, a guest house or self-catering accommodation
that eligible charities which have received charitable rate relief or discretionary relief can still get the grant.
These grants are managed at local authority level, so visit the Dudley Council business support webpage to apply
For more information, visit: https://www.dudleybusinessfirst.org.uk/coronavirus-business-guidance/government-grants/
4. Dudley Council Community Forums
Grants of up to £5,000 for local activities (at ward level) are still available.
The guidelines and application forms are available on the Dudley Council website
Charity Tax Group has useful guidance on government funds 2 and 3 here
Other finance and fundraising support:
1. We are constantly updating a list of funders supporting not-for-profits
during the Coronavirus pandemic.
2. Raise money online through JustGiving - 0% platform fee
3. Raise money and support online through Crowdfunder, which has announced it has dropped its platform fees
4. Charity Finance Group general information
5. Institute of Fundraising information
Taking on volunteers during the Coronavirus pandemic
Help and guidance for groups taking on volunteers and offering support to communities during the outbreak is now located here: https://interests.me/org/dudleycvs/story/200803
Community Centres and Covid-19
This note is a summary of various government guidance that may apply to community venues and the activities that take place in them. This document signposts to the appropriate government guidance which may change frequently. This note cannot be a substitute for the official government guidance which we recommend referring to before planning your activities or your centre’s reopening. https://dudleycvsblogging.files.wordpress.com/2020/07/community-centres-and-covid-19.pdf
This guidance note will be useful for:
- Managers, committees and trustees that govern community centres and other multi-use community facilities
- Community groups that hire community facilities to run their activities
Health and Care
Where to find posters and resources for your place of work or community venue
Public information materials can be downloaded from Public Health England at: https://campaignresources.phe.gov.uk/resources/campaigns/101/resources/5016
The national infrastructure bodies – NAVCA, NCVO, ACEVO, CFG, IoF, Small Charities Coalition, DSC and others – are working together, shoulder to shoulder, to support the sector at this crucial time. They are using all their combined weight and influence to bring about urgent and immediate action to create a meaningful package of financial support for the sector – for those actively involved in the delivery of crisis response, and for the sustainability of the sector as a whole.
Dudley CVS has added its voice to the campaign by emailing our local MPs to tell them of the immense pressure facing the sector at a time when it facing unprecedented and unanticipated demand.
You can also lend your weight to this campaign by visiting this link: https://navca.org.uk/news-and-views/f/everydaycounts