The £10.5 million Community Right to Challenge Grants Programme is now accepting applications from voluntary organisations in England that want to take over a local service in order to run it more effectively. The new Localism Act allows voluntary organisations across England to bid to run a service which is currently provided by their local authority that they think they can run more effectively. The Act came into effect on 27 June 2012.
The Community Right to Challenge Grants Programme aims to support organisations that can show they have the potential to compete for public service delivery contracts. Those with a strong potential can apply for feasibility grants of between £10,000 and £100,000 to help prepare an Expression of Interest or compete in a procurement process. Organisations that need to build internal capacity can apply for Pre-feasibility Grants of between £5,000 and £10,000.
To be eligible, organisations must be based and working in England, be a relevant body within Section 81 of the Localism Act and have a valid reference number from the Community Rights Advice Line. Priority will be given to small local organisations that are looking to build capacity and capability to deliver public service contracts.
The Department for Communities and Local Government has provided the funding which is managed by the Social Investment Business along with umbrella bodies Locality and ACEVO.
The programme will run for three years. Full details can be found on the Social Investment Business (SIB) website