Empowering Communities Programme

We continue to support various community-led regeneration programmes through the Empowering Communities Programme, which includes the following two targeted funds:

The Investing in Communities Fund (ICF) is a streamlined communities fund that is delivered as part of the Empowering Communities Programme. The fund reflects our commitment to investing in communities so that they can develop the resources and resilience to decide their own aspirations, priorities and solutions in response. The fund supports our most disadvantaged or fragile communities to tackle poverty in all its forms on their own terms. The fund also helps to meet our targets as set out in the child poverty delivery plan and to underpin the Place Principle by encouraging more joined up collaborative approaches to services and assets to achieve better outcomes for people and communities.

Investing in Communities Fund

Investing in Communities Fund (ICF) Round 2 closed for applications at 2pm on Tuesday 28 June 2022.

Submitted applications will now be assessed and we currently expect to advise all applicants of the outcome of their application(s) by the end of December 2022.

ICF Round 1: 2022/23 funding extension year

The current round of the Investing in Communities Fund (ICF) ended on 31 March 2022. 

Given the continuing challenges associated with the COVID-19 pandemic, and the impact this has had on project delivery and service models for currently funded ICF projects, we have extended the funding period available for Round 1 ICF projects up to 31 March 2023 where a clear need for extended funding can be demonstrated.

This extended 2022/23 funding period aims to ensure that these projects have continued support and stability during the ongoing period of uncertainty, enabling them to meet their intended outcomes.

Round 1 funded projects

The first round of the fund was open for applications from 7 May to 14 June 2019.  Those supported following the Independent Assessment Panel meeting on 7 October 2019 can be found here

Aspiring Communities Fund

The £24.8 million Aspiring Communities Fund will help community bodies and third sector organisations in our most deprived and fragile communities develop and deliver long-term local solutions that:

  • address local priorities and needs
  • increase active inclusion
  • build on the assets of local communities to reduce poverty and to enable inclusive growth 

View a list of projects approved for the Aspiring Communities Fund, updated in February 2019.

The Aspiring Communities Fund is not currently accepting applications. Details of future funding rounds will be released when they are available.

Previous Funding 2018 - 2019

The new streamlined Investing in Communities Fund replaces five previous community funds:

  • the People and Communities Fund (PCF)
  • the Strengthening Communities Programme (SCP)
  • the Community Choices Fund (CCF)
  • the Making Places Initiative (MPI)
  • the Fair Food Transformation Fund (FFTF)

Since its launch in 2012, PCF has invested more than £41 million in hundreds of community-led projects that tackle inequality across Scotland.

In 2016 we began support for Participatory Budgeting through our Community Choices Fund.

See a list of Community Choices Fund awards recipients for the following years:

See a list of Making Places Initiative award recipients.

See a list of Fair Food Transformation Fund award recipients.

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