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There is a wide range of funding sources available for projects including UK Government, the European Union, charitable trusts and the national lottery. Eligibility for funding will depend on the nature of your organisation/group, activities that you are engaged in and the type and scale of the proposed project.

Charities, community groups, social enterprises and voluntary organisations can search for themselves through the hundreds of Government, Lottery, charitable and other funds available on a European, national, regional and local basis.

External funding service

We can help your voluntary/community groups and organisations to discover new funding opportunities for your projects and ideas. We provide a funder search facility that helps you to find out which funder is likely to provide grants best suited to you. We can also assist you to develop and define your business plan and or constitution, and put you in touch with experience and support from a variety of sources. Funding for projects is available from a number of sources including the UK/SG Government, The EU, charitable trusts and the national lottery. Whether you are eligible will depend on the nature of your organisation/group, its activities and the type and scale of the proposed project.

In addition to traditional grant funding there are a number of crowdfunding platforms, such as:

To allow us to assess the level of support you require please complete the External Funding Enquiry

The external funding service cannot provide advice on accessing funding for individuals, un-constituted organisations or profit making businesses. However the following contacts will be able to provide further information:

Ayrshire Rural and Islands Ambition(ARIA) Fund

The Ayrshire Rural and Islands Ambition (ARIA) Fund replacement to EU rural development fund LEADER.  It is part of the Scottish Government's Community Led Local Development (CLLD) programme.   

LACER Funding

The Scottish Government recently announced additional funding for Local Authorities, called the Local Authority COVID Economic Recovery (LACER) fund, to support local economic recovery and provide additional assistance for low-income households. South Ayrshire Council will utilise part of its LACER allocation to provide grant support to: 1) locally based social enterprises through the Social Enterprise Growth & Resilience Fund (see below); 2) directly to organisations working with low-income households (more information on this will follow shortly).  

Social Enterprise Growth & Resilience (SEGAR) Fund

Social Enterprise Growth & Resilience (SEGAR) Fund - currently closed to applications

SEGAR seeks to ensure the growth and greater resilience of the social enterprise sector in South Ayrshire. Applications should demonstrate how a SEGAR grant will contribute to an organisation's long-term financial sustainability, deliver additional services for people in South Ayrshire and/or increase the size of the local social enterprise sector.

For further information please contact

Empowering Communities - Cost Of Living Crisis

Group Application Form - LACER. Empowering Community – Cost Of Living Crisis (Word doc) [136KB]

Groups and organisations who are working directly with residents from low income households can apply for this grant for revenue or capital costs. Applicants will be expected to show how the grant will improve the lives for these families.

Groups more likely to experience low income:

  • Lone parent families
  • Families with a disabled adult or child
  • Larger families with three or more children
  • Families with a child under one year old
  • Minority ethnic families

Who Can Apply

  • 3rd sector groups and organisations, including community associations and community councils to help them support low-income families with the cost of living crisis.
  • Applicants will be expected to show how the grant will improve the lives for these families.

How do I apply?

Complete the attached application form and return to the closing date.

Closing date for applications

The closing date for applications will be 31st August 2022

For more information please contact

The UK Government's Community Ownership Fund has launched and the first bidding round is open.

The £150 million Community Ownership Fund is for communities across the United Kingdom. It has been set up to help communities take ownership of assets and amenities at risk of closure. It will run for 4 years.

Voluntary and community organisations can bid for match funding to support the purchase and/or renovation costs of community assets and amenities, subject to the full eligibility criteria outlined in the prospectus:

Proposals will need to prove the value of the asset to local people and that the asset can run sustainably for the long-term benefit of the community.

Information session webinars for interested parties (links below) will provide an opportunity to ask questions:

COF webinar session 2: Friday 23rd July, 10am - 11am, sign up here

South Ayrshire Charitable Trust

The South Ayrshire Charitable Trust has been set up to assist and improve the lives of South Ayrshire residents who are in need because of poverty, age, ill-health, disability, financial hardship or other disadvantage.

Find out more

South Ayrshire 4 Community

Search for funding for General Community Benefit, Education & Training, Health, Disability, Youth, Sport and lots more.

South Ayrshire 4 Community website

External funding alert

South Ayrshire Council now produces a monthly external funding alert that provides details on available funding opportunities and deadlines for applications from businesses, organisations and community groups. Further information is available by clicking on the links provided throughout the alert or via email from

Funding alert (PDF) [345KB]