There are a number of trusts which may be able to help you with funds for work on your church building or hall. Matching churches and their projects with potential funders can be a very time consuming task and is often a huge hurdle to overcome when you are just starting to progress your project. To save your parish time and keep things moving as quickly as possible, our Lead Giving & Funding Adviser, Gary Watson, will be happy to discuss the work you need to complete and the benefits this will bring in order to match your project with the most approriate selection of funders. You can then use your time more effectively and get your project off to the right start!
Our Grant Funding Latest webpage also gives details of some featured trusts and deadlines relevant to building repairs, community work, young/older people, etc.
We have a number of leaflets and booklets available to download at the bottom of the page which you may find helpful:
- We Can Do It! – Advice on how to run a major appeal. A useful, practical guide to raising anything from £20,000 to £250,000+.
- Who Will Help Us? – Beginner’s guide to looking for grants from Trusts and other bodies. Sources of information on grants, plus one parish’s experience of how they funded a capital project.
- Giving for the Glory of God special appeal guidance from the national church.
- An Appeal Organiser’s Booklist – Useful reference books (with ISBN numbers) for anyone putting together a financial appeal, covering grant sources and fundraising strategies.
- Parish Councils funding – The Church Buildings Council has published a response to the National Association of Local Councils briefing (2018) regarding parish councils spending money on churches.
The national church has produced a number of Funding Guides.
Your local Council for Voluntary Service can provide details of sources of funding from statutory bodies and Government agencies which may be willing to help your project. These groups are staffed by volunteers:
Help from the VAT man
The Listed Places of Worship Grant Scheme (LPWGS) allows parishes to reclaim the value of VAT on most repairs and alterations to listed church buildings. The Government has made available £42m a year, which should be enough for parishes to be able to reclaim 100% of the VAT on eligible repairs and alterations to listed church buildings. Visit the website or phone the helpline 0845 601 5945.
The Memorials Grant Scheme is a similar scheme for getting VAT back on work done to public memorials (might include many church/war memorials).
Fundraising events should not replace planned and proportionate giving for resourcing day-to-day expenses. But they can have a place for one off activities and, provided that they concentrate on FUN, can be a means of bringing communities together. They establish connections which can lead to conversation which can enable exploration of Christian Commitment which can lead to Conversion. Too much stress on FUNd can send out the message ‘we want your money and are less concerned about the person behind the pound’. So, look at ‘faith raising’ and ‘fun raising’.
Ideas include: concert, sponsored walk/bike ride, fair, fun day, treasure hunt, open gardens, quiz, progressive/bring & share meal, barbecue, teddy bears’ picnic, auction of promises, art/wedding dress exhibition, flower festival, church Christmas card launch and lunch, gift day for roof appeal etc. Work in partnership with other charities or interest groups.
Buildings and their use
The Church of England’s ChurchCare website is a goldmine of information and authoritative advice on anything to do with church maintenance and repair.
Crossing the Threshold is a resource which helps parishes develop their buildings for community use.
Guidance on setting up a community shop in your church is offered by the Plunkett Foundation.
If you’d like to make your church more user-friendly visit the Living Stones website and connect with their team of professional Christian consultants with expertise in sensitively making better use of church buildings.
For Disability Discrimination Act help visit Through the Roof website. Through the Roof is a Christian charity specialising in advice on how to make your church open to people with disabilities.
The Arthur Rank Centre website is the home of ideas and best practice in everything to do with rural churches, from youth work to welcoming tourists.
Churches raising money through appeals may like to consider using online giving as another method of raising funds from their community.
In some cases, it may be appropriate to borrow money and information about this can be found on our Loans webpage.
Who to contact
Gary Watson, Lead Giving and Funding Adviser