OCF grants

Oxfordshire Community Foundation improve lives and tackle inequality by investing in Oxfordshire’s dynamic charitable sector through grant-making. We fund around 200 grassroots charitable organisations each year. Charitable groups across Oxfordshire can apply to one of our regular grants rounds, which cater for small and medium organisations.

As well as our own funds, we distribute grants of different sizes from national, statutory, corporate and personal funders in response to the needs of communities in Oxfordshire.

Choose a grant programme

Scroll down to see our current grants programmes. Click on ‘Find out more’ to find full details of each programme, including guidance notes and how to apply. Note the Step Change Fund grants are always open on a rolling basis.

Please sign up for our email updates or follow us on social media to be informed about our latest grants news. Do check our other sources of funding links further down this page.

Groups of people doing purposeful activities outside and looking happy.

£10k-£60k, with one grant of £75k
Thriving in Nature Fund
Applications are now closed
  • - Improving health and wellbeing, and nurturing work opportunities, by supporting charitable organisations to unite people with nature
  • - Funding for core costs, capital costs or project costs
A group of people, sitting and talking.

£25k-£37k to support up to 8 organisations
Better Mental Health Fund
Applications are now closed
  • - Preventing poor mental health and cultivating good mental wellbeing in the community
  • - Funding for project costs, core costs, capital costs, promotional costs
Step Change Fund logo

£10,000–£50,000
Step Change
Next closing date for submissions is Wednesday 14th August at midday
  • - Transformational change for charitable organisations to build a stronger base for delivering their core work
  • - Core costs, project costs and capital costs

Living Essentials Fund

Coming soon
Living Essentials Fund
Expected to open Autumn 2024
Two groups of people participating in group activities.

£5,000 - £20,000
Community Capacity grants
Currently closed to applications
  • - Helping Oxfordshire's residents live independently and healthily for as long as possible in their lives
  • - Grants cover ongoing running costs, project, capital and promotional costs
  • - Funded by Oxfordshire County Council
Didcot Powerhouse Fund

£1,000-£10,000
Didcot Powerhouse Fund
Applications are now closed for the 2024 grants round
  • - Grant Theme 2024 - Creating stronger bonds in our community
  • - Funding for project operating costs, including a proportionate share of overheads
  • - Open to groups working in the Didcot surroundings

By applying to one of the grant programmes outlined here, you are accessing money from all of our private and corporate funders. 

Other sources of funding and resources

The Midcounties Cooperative Community Fund provides grants of up to £500 to community groups all over the UK. They are looking for groups who align with their cooperative values and through their projects empower their members/service users and wider community to achieve more. Find out more

The Paul Hamlyn Foundation Youth Fund supports organisations whose main purpose is working with and for young people (aged 14-25) who face complex transitions to adulthood. Find out more

The Foyle Foundation have updated their guidance for applications to all their grants. Their small grants scheme focus is for one-year grants only, to cover core costs, projects, essential equipment or building projects. Find out more. Their main grants scheme supports charities with a core remit of the Arts or Learning. Find out more

National Lottery Community Fund award money raised by National Lottery players to fund great ideas that help communities to thrive and are open to all applications that meet their criteria. Groups can apply for funding under £10,000, or over £10,000, depending on what they want to do. Find out more 

City of Oxford Charity grants for the benefit of the residents of the city of Oxford who find themselves in need, sickness or hardship. Any organisation engaged in supporting local people can apply for their grants on behalf of a client – those experiencing hardship who have need for specific items, including uniforms or school equipment. Find out more

Oxford City Council have the new Oxford Community Impact Fund which replaces all former funding programmes for communities including: Culture Fund, Green Neighbourhood Scheme, Youth Ambition Fund, Youth Ambition Holiday Activities Fund, Small Grants and Open Bidding. Find out more

Event Cycle take unwanted event waste and give it a second life. Sign your charity up and let them know what you need. Find out more

Giving World redistributes business surplus stock to communities in need. You can view available products on their website and register your charity or community group to request items and receive stock updates. Find out more

Barchester Charitable Foundation aims to helps older people and adults with a disability across England, Scotland & Wales. Their focus is about connecting or re-connecting people with others in their local community, and they support applications that combat loneliness and enable people to be active and engaged. Find out more

Esmée Fairbairn Foundation have adapted their funding goals to Our Natural World, A Fairer Future and Creative, Confident Communities. Find out more

Tudor Trust core funding for small community-led groups supporting marginalised people, encouraging inclusion, integration, and independence. They also offer unrestricted funding, project grants, capital grants, grants to help strengthen your organisation, and short-term loans, with no maximum or minimum grant, on a rolling basis. Find out more

Shanly Foundation primarily supports good causes predominantly within Buckinghamshire, Berkshire, Hertfordshire, Oxfordshire, West Sussex and parts of Surrey and Hampshire. These include scouting and guide groups, schools, community groups, sporting groups, social and community events as well as registered charities. Find out more

The Ann Rylands Small Donations programme makes grants to support charities’ core costs with a maximum award of up to £5,000. The programme was re-launched in January 2022 to enable the Trust to increase support for smaller charities whose work aligns with their mission to improve provision in health and care, particularly for older people, people with disabilities or living with serious illness, people needing palliative and end of life care, or people facing challenges with mental health, social exclusion or homelessness. Find out more

Trust for Oxfordshire’s Environment (TOE) Local Environment Fund for community groups and other charitable or non-profit organisations throughout Oxfordshire. Grants of up to £15,000 can be used to deliver projects that support priorities for biodiversity, public access and the climate and they assess grant applications four times a year. Find out more

The Good Exchange is for charitable organisations operating within a 20 mile radius of Market Place, Newbury. They can use The Good Exchange platform which is owned and run by charity Greenham Trust, to apply for grants, fundraise and drive donations via a single application process. Find out more

Turn2Us helps individual people in financial need gain access to welfare benefits, charitable grants and other financial help – online, by phone and face to face through partner organisations. Find out more

Angus Irvine Playing Fields Fund (AIPFF) exists to increase opportunities for kids and young people in inner-city and disadvantaged areas to play sport and enjoy its many benefits. They provide grant funding to community clubs, many of which are volunteer led. Find out more

The Wolfson Foundation provides funding for places. These grants are for capital initiatives, i.e. buildings (new build or refurbishment) and equipment. They fund a broad range of organisations working across the fields of education, science & medicine, health & disability, heritage, humanities & the arts. Find out more

We also regularly share information on Twitter (X) about other upcoming funding opportunities that we become aware of.  Follow us to be in the know. 

Other links

OCVA (Oxfordshire Community and Voluntary Action) is the leading charity support organisation in the county. OCVA provides advice, networking events, volunteer brokerage and training in a wide variety of relevant subjects, from marketing to first aid. Find out more

ROBIN (Responsible Oxfordshire Business Involvement Network) is a network of like-minded people from businesses and public sector bodies who want to collaborate and support charities and community groups (Associate members) by sharing skills and resources creatively. These can be one-off opportunities, but so often lead to the development of closer relationships and further new opportunities and associations. Find out more

NEXUS is a partnership programme from which connects businesses with charities, social enterprises and start-ups. They signpost information and host events to facilitate introductions and sharing experiences. They enable members to collaborate, learn and grow as part of a like-minded community. Read more about OCF and NEXUS

Oxfordshire Volunteers is a county-wide website that brings together potential volunteers with charities looking for help. You can post regular or occasional volunteering opportunities, including trustee roles, to be added to the searchable database. Visit the site

Charity Mentors is a charity that matches charity leaders with pro bono professional mentors, all of whom have had experience of running and growing a business in the private or public sector. Find out more

Featured case studies

Ark T Centre

The Ark T Centre is an arts project in East Oxford, and is situated in a high-risk area for Child Sexual Exploitation (CSE). Ark T is an open and inclusive community, where people, art, and powerful ideas come together, using the transformative powers of creativity to change lives.

SOFEA

SOFEA’s mission is to enable the transformation of people’s lives, and their communities, with a major focus on young people. They enable people to fulfil their potential through work, wellbeing, study and purpose projects, providing the means of reducing the immediate effects of disadvantage by relieving food insecurity in the wider community.

Good Food Oxford (GFO)

Good Food Oxford supports the existing work of many organisations in and around the city working to make our food system more nourishing, less wasteful and more sustainable.

Thrive

Thrive offers activity clubs and mentoring for young people in two of Oxford’s most deprived areas – Blackbird Leys and Barton. Their clubs and activities are countering the effects of social exclusion.