€40 million COVID-19 Support Package
For Community and Voluntary Organisations, Charities and Social Enterprises

Mr Michael Ring TD, the Minister for Rural and Community Development and Mr Seán Canney TD, Minister of State with responsibility for Community Development, have today (Friday, 8 May) announced the launch of a €40 million package of supports for Community and Voluntary Organisations, Charities and Social Enterprises.

A large number of these organisations are providing critical services to vulnerable individuals and groups in society arising from the COVID-19 crisis. Many of these organisations now find themselves in financial difficulty as fundraising efforts, commercial activities and other services they rely on have been curtailed due to the ongoing crisis.

The €40 million funding package is being made available through the Dormant Accounts Fund, which is specifically set aside to support initiatives which will benefit the most disadvantaged groups in society.

The package consists of:

  • A €35 million ‘COVID-19 Stability Fund’ which will provide a level of support to qualifying organisations who are most in need and have seen their trading and/or fundraising income drop significantly during the crisis; and
  • A €5m Government commitment to a Philanthropy Fund, (Innovate Together) which will focus on supporting responses to the COVID-19 crisis that require innovative and adaptive solutions to existing and emerging challenges.
This new funding is being provided in addition to the more than €45 million in funding, announced last November, for the Dormant Accounts Action Plan 2020. That funding was allocated for 43 separate measures to be delivered across 9 Government Departments to benefit disadvantaged groups.

“Community and voluntary organisations, charities and social enterprises have played a very significant role in supporting vulnerable people in our communities over recent weeks, particularly in the context of the Government Community Call. I would like to commend them on that work, which I know is continuing.”

Excerpt from Minister Ring’s statement.

Read the Press Release here.

Full details of the Philanthropy fund can be found here.

“Innovate Together Fund”

On Wednesday, 13th May, Mr Seán Canney TD, Minister of State with responsibility for Community Development has welcomed the opening of a new “Innovate Together Fund”, a partnership between Government, Social Innovation Fund Ireland and the philanthropic community.

Following on from the announcement last week for a support package for the sector, this Fund is a unique transformative opportunity for Community and Voluntary organisations, Charities and Social Enterprises to innovate and adapt to the challenges presented by COVID-19.

The Fund comprises a €5 million commitment from the Department of Rural and Community Development (the department), from the Dormant Accounts Fund, which will be supplemented over time by donations from the philanthropic sector.

Purpose of the Fund

The purpose of the Fund is to support adaptation and innovation in finding solutions to emerging needs, for example:

  • enabling online education particularly for disadvantaged groups
  • online youth mental health interventions
  • community outreach to vulnerable groups while social distancing
  • re-skilling the workforce for new ways of working
  • developing the circular economy
  • new approaches to solutions for food security

Eligibility for Funding

Applications are being sought from organisations who have developed creative responses to the crisis which have lasting potential. These may relate to our community, our health, education, employability and economy. These innovations will support the most vulnerable in our society and those who have been most affected by the crisis and will ultimately help to make our society more inclusive, equal and sustainable.

Funds will be available to a charity, social enterprise or voluntary organization based in Ireland delivering services/activities in Irish communities.

Only organisations in existence prior to 1 January 2019 and operational on 1 March 2020 will be eligible as this will provide evidence of appropriate governance and financial stability.

Applicants must be able to demonstrate suitable governance and a fund management structure.

The first round of applications is open from Wednesday 13th May and closes for applications at 5pm on Wednesday 27th May with two additional rounds planned for June and September 2020.

To begin your application now click here.

Further details can be found on the Department of Rural and Community Development website and at
Read the Press Release here.

Full details of the Stability fund can be found here.

COVID-19 Stability Fund

The Department of Rural and Community Development is funding the COVID-19 Stability Fund for Community and Voluntary, Charity and Social Enterprises. If you are a community and voluntary organisation, social enterprise or charity and you are in urgent need of funding to help your organisation through COVID-19, please read the information below to find out more. €35m has been made available through the Dormant Accounts Fund.

Who is eligible?

The primary aim of the Stability Fund is to assist community and voluntary, charity and social enterprises who are experiencing financial difficulties due to a reduction in their fundraising income and / or traded income as a direct result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Organisations must be delivering front-line critical services in the Republic of Ireland, before the 1st January 2019, to be eligible to apply.
Organisations must have a projected loss in their 2020 fundraising income and / or traded income of 25% or more as a direct result of the COVID-19 pandemic to be eligible to apply.
Eligible organisations can apply for a once-off grant towards their operational and overhead costs such a rent, utilities, (excluding salaries) for the next few months.

The grant awarded will be dependent on the need identified and the demand for the available budget. It is envisaged that grants awarded will vary in size ranging from €2,000 to €100,000.

Opening and closing dates

Opening date for applications is Monday 11th May 2020

Closing date for application is Wednesday 20th May 2020 at 5pm

Please note that the Stability Fund portal will automatically close at 5pm on Wednesday 20th May, 2020.
You will not be able to submit your application after this date and time. Your application form will remain as a draft and will not be considered.

Guidelines and Further Information

Only online application forms will be accepted for consideration. Hard copy or e-mail applications will not be considered.

This funding is available to ensure that those most vulnerable and disadvantaged in our society continue to receive services and supports in this difficult period.

The guidelines, further information and application forms (available from 11th May) are available at Pobal. Please read them prior to starting your application.

Contact details

If you are unclear about the criteria or need technical assistance with the portal please contact Pobal via Pobal will respond by e-mail or telephone within 48 hours.