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What are Community Grants?

The European Social Fund (ESF) was set up to improve employment opportunities in the European Union and so help raise standards of living. It aims to help people fulfill their potential by giving them better skills and better job prospects.

Grants of up to £15,000 funded from the European Social Fund (ESF) made to organisations for the purposes of supporting people from the hardest to reach communities and individuals experiencing disadvantages accessing employment and skills provision.

Activities will focus on eligible individuals who have difficulty in accessing ESF mainstream provision. The purpose of the grant is to facilitate the mobilisation of disadvantaged or excluded unemployed and economically inactive people towards employment. Some funding can be used by the grant recipient for capacity building this is restricted to 10% of the overall funding available.

Community Grants funding has closed. We will publish any future opportunities here.

Who can apply for a grant?

The Grants are available to Third Sector Organisation working in the East of England that meet the following criteria:

  • have a turnover of less that £300,000 per annum
  • employ no more than 9 full time equivalent paid staff
  • are a social enterprise or not for profit organisation
  • not in direct receipt of Department of Works and Pensions (DWP) and/or
    Skills Funding Agency funding.

The programme will support a range of activities that may include:

  • initial help with basic skills
  • taster work experience including voluntary work
  • training advice and guidance
  • job search assistance; confidence building and personal development
  • first contact engagement activities, e.g. to provide support to individuals to overcome barriers to learning and/or employment.

For updates on the application process follow us: (use #commgrantsEoE) or

Applications are now closed.
Please note that the current funding for this project has now come to an end. We will update this page as soon as we have more information on further funding so please check back regularly.