National charity Independent Age has launched a £2.8 million grants fund to help advice-based organisations reach and support more older people.
The funding will be allocated to organisations in a number of areas of higher deprivation where a significant number of older people live.
• Liverpool & Knowsley
• London – the boroughs of Newham, Tower Hamlets, Hackney
• West Midlands – specifically the areas of Sandwell, Walsall and Wolverhampton
• Glasgow City
• South Lanarkshire
• North Lanarkshire
• Cardiff and surrounding area
• Swansea and surrounding area
The ‘Boosting Advice’ fund is being launched in response to both the urgent and ongoing need of advice services for older people in financial hardship. Independent Age wants to invest in strengthening an advice sector that already does great work despite chronic underfunding. According to the Community Justice Fund the funding gap for free advice services has increased to £30million in 2023/242.This lack of funding will put some advice charities at risk and will leave 43,000 people unable to access specialist and legal advice in the next year.
Hannah Lison, Head of Grants and Partnerships at Independent Age, said:
“We know there are high numbers of older people in the UK who may be living in poverty, or at risk of financial hardship and could be entitled to Pension Credit and other benefits but are not currently claiming it.
“We also know the advice sector is managing increasingly complex needs under increasing pressure and budget constraints.
“This £2.8 million fund distributed across our priority areas will provide funding for advice organisations whose brilliant work will improve older people’s lives through increased financial well-being.
“If you think your organisation, or another organisation you know, might be a good fit for this grants fund, please visit our website or get in touch with our Grants team to find out more.”
You can learn more about the ‘Boosting Advice’ grants fund here: https://www.independentage.org/community/our-grants-fund/boosting-advice-fund
The fund will award 3-year grants for charities to provide ongoing or regular advice that benefits older people facing financial hardship. Eligible organisations will be able to apply for a minimum of £90,000 (£30,000 per year) and up to £180,000 (£60,000 per year).
Organisations applying should be advice focused and hold the Advice Quality Standard (AQS) if based in England and Wales or a minimum of Level 2 of the Scottish National Standards for Information and Advice Providers (SNSIAP). Organisations who apply don’t have to be currently working regularly with older people, but will need to provide a plan for how they plan to increase their reach to this group. The fund is intended to grow advice organisations’ capacity to provide support to older people facing financial hardship. As such there will be training available as part of the funding offer.
The latest funding comes on top of previous grants rounds from Independent Age. In 2020, the charity launched an emergency COVID fund and in 2022, it launched it’s emergency cost-of-living fund. So far, the organisation has allocated £3 million to support 77 organisations.
Joanna Elson CBE, Chief Executive of Independent Age, said:
“Over 2 million older people are living in poverty in the UK, and many more are living precariously on the edge. Our ambition is to improve the lives of 1 million older people facing financial hardship by 2027 and our grants programme is an essential part of this.
“A key way to tackle this problem is to ensure older people are informed about the financial support they are entitled to. We want to get straight to the heart of the issue by improving access to free advice services in areas of high deprivation where we know a lot of older people live.
“Through our £3 million cost-of-living grants fund we are already helping 77 organisations who work directly with older people to help those struggling with the cost of living. We’re very proud of these partnerships. With this new £2.8 million fund we are looking to expand our grants funding to include more advice-based organisations. By working together with a range of organisations, we hope to improve later life for as many people as possible.”
To find out more visit Independent Age’s website: https://www.independentage.org/community/our-grants-fund/boosting-advice-fund
All applications should be through Independent Age’s online portal [link] https://www.tfaforms.com/5100359, but please do read our application guidance carefully before completing your form.
The closing date for submission of an Expression of Interest is xxx 5pm on 20th February 2024.
For all queries, please contact the Independent Age Grants Team email@example.com
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Notes to editor
For media enquiries please contact
Max Shepherd , Media Communications team at Independent Age, 020 7605 4291, firstname.lastname@example.org
Out of hours: 07545 209589
- Howgate, Matthew., The funding gap - Free Legal Advice Sector 2023-24. Consultant to the Community Justice Fund (March 2023). Link: https://nfj.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2021/10/2023-Funding-Gap-Report-FINAL.pdf