Isle of Wight Community Fund

The aim of this grant programme is to fund community projects on the Isle of Wight helping to tackle poverty and to increase health and wellbeing.


The Community Fund offers 12-month grants of £1,000 – £5,000 for not-for-profit community organisations. The fund will only make grants to organisations based in AND supporting work within the Isle of Wight.


When applying for this fund, community organisations should consider how the project will help to ease poverty and/ or increase health and wellbeing for participants. Your project can reach island residents of all ages and fund work that is one-to-one (such as counselling) as well as work on a group basis.


The Isle of Wight Community Funds are made possible by endowment funding donated by IOW donors, and are managed by HIWCF.


HIWCF: HIWCF administers this grant programme. HIWCF’s core aim is to tackle poverty and inequality. HIWCF understands the connection between health and poverty and that health can be positively impacted by people being involved in shaping local projects/ services.


Please see the application form guidance.


Please see the grant agreement guidance

Need help?

Please contact the grants team if you have any queries.

Programme Overview

Status: Opening soon
Opening Date: 16/04/2024
Closing Date: 22/05/2024
Minimum Grant: £1,000
Maximum Grant: £5,000 
Location: Isle of Wight


The projects that this grant programme will fund need to meet ALL THREE of the following programme criteria. If bids are not clear about all elements, they will be scored as ineligible based on a poor fit with the programme criteria.


1) Your application must be for work that reaches people living hard and challenging lives. Your bid should make clear how the requested funding will reach people who are living in poverty, facing discrimination, or isolated. This could include families struggling to cover living costs, people with mental health problems, people living with a disability or a long-term health condition (this is not an exhaustive list of examples).


2) Your application must show how local people/ people from your target community helped to shape this work – this could be through these people being consulted, volunteering, or leading the work. 


3) Your application must demonstrate how it seeks to ease the effects of poverty and/ or increase health and wellbeing. We know that there is no simple fix to reduce poverty or improve wellbeing, but your work should show how it is taking steps such as: linking people to advice/ benefits, helping people to reduce anxiety, helping people to grow food and get active (this is not an exhaustive list).


Additional Criteria:

– Your grant application can be for new or existing community activities and services.

Budget Costs: We want to help you run these activities over a sustained period during your 12-month grant, so will cover staff and volunteer costs, activity costs and a proportionate contribution to the core costs of your organisation to deliver this work.

– We will fund foodbanks and pantries for work that also delivers advice and support to the community e.g. an advice worker. Please see exclusions below about us not being able to cover food/ supplies from this fund.

– We will accept bids to both this Isle of Wight Community Fund AND the Young Island Lives Fund but we ask that you request different pieces of work so that if both were approved you would not be in receipt of dual funding.



– We will not fund community organisations with an annual income over £1 million.

– We will not fund capital costs, refurbishments of buildings, or large items of equipment. 

– We will not fund foodbank/ pantry stock (food, toiletries etc) or costs of foodbank deliveries (please note that foodbanks/ pantries can apply for wider activities such as advice work).

– We will not fund one-off events.

– We will not fund any provision that is a statutory requirement or is profit-making.  


What does a strong application look like?


We always have a high number of bids for our funding programmes – please read the criteria carefully to ensure the project you wish to apply for genuinely meets them.


To help us understand how your bid matches our criteria you must meet all three of our programme criteria detailed above.


Please have a read of these case studies as examples of work that meet all three of our programme criteria. All examples are fictitious and for illustrative purposes only.


Town Hub, based on the Isle of Wight. This charity supports local people who live in the four large housing estates that surround this community centre. Town Hub runs a range of services; it will use a Community Fund grant of £3,500 to pay towards its part-time Support Worker who runs drop-in advice sessions from 10am – 1pm every weekday. Advice covered includes help with form-filling, benefits advice, and signposting to local health services.


How does this bid meet the programme criteria?

(1) The project works with people who face barriers to accessing local services. Many people who use the hub have low levels of literacy and/or mental health problems.

(2) The Town Hub has a steering group run by 10 local people who live on nearby estates. They meet monthly with the paid staff including the Support Worker; this helps to provide a link between what the community is asking for and what the organisation delivers.

(3) The project has a three-year track record of being able to show that the support provided can help reduce the isolation of those who attend and help them access care/ benefits/ health advice.


Blue-Days, based on the Isle of Wight. This charity provides counselling for adults who are struggling with their mental health. It will use a Community Fund grant of £4,750 to pay towards its part-time BACP qualified Counsellor. The Counsellor receives referrals from several local organisations including a women’s refuge and a local family centre.


How does this bid meet the programme criteria?

(1) The project will enable circa 20 people to access counselling sessions to help with anxiety and low mood. Each person will be offered a block six-sessions that will run weekly.

(2) The organisation ran a planning day in Spring 2024 for local residents and local community organisations. It is well networked and has good signposting in and out of the counselling service.

(3)The project uses a number of techniques to baseline the needs that adults present with on day one; it then tracks how these issues shift during the six sessions. Each person is provided with a detailed move-on plan (additional sessions are available if move-on is not possible). Expected outcomes are reduced anxiety, and increased involvement in local community activities (there is a track record in involving previous participants with local volunteer groups e.g. a local environmental group and a charity shop).