About the Calor Rural Community Fund

It’s all about your community and your local project

From the buzz of a beehive fully equipped for over 80 beekeepers, to the calming hues of a refurbished living room for those living with Alzhemier’s and Dementia, Calor’s Rural Community Fund has met the needs of hundreds of people across the UK.

From the simply superb, to a well-needed refurb... We're offering grants of up to £5,000 for projects that will provide an on-going service for rural communities. And, as it’s Calor’s 85th birthday this year, we thought it was only right to bump up the funding pot to a wonderful £85,000. 

Our winners have been chosen! Head over to see which lucky projects have won their share of this year's prize pot. If you haven't already, you can also register for news and updates about the fund. See the winners here

Register for updates

What type of funding is available?

Is your community project sitting off the mains gas grid, and in the need of financial support? You can apply for funding from Calor’s Rural Community Fund to give your project the boost it deserves.

Now in the fourth year of running this amazing fund, we’re on a roll and we’re ready to put our £85,000 funding pot to work. Tell us what your community requires and we might be able to help you make an impact.

We have three levels of funding available, depending on the size of your project. We’ll be dishing out 11 x £5,000 grants, 6 x £2,500 grants and 5 x £1,000 grants to the winning rural projects. If you're a finalist but you don't receive a top prize, we'll still award your project with £500.

Don’t forget, the funding you apply for must equate to 50% or more of your total project cost.

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Is your idea eligible?

  • It will make a positive difference to your rural community; benefitting the wider community and not just one individual, or a one off event
  • It is connected with a community organisation or charity and is not-for-profit
  • It will take place in either Scotland, England or Wales
  • It is capable of being completed within 12 months of receiving funding if successful
  • The level of funding you are applying for is equal to or more than 50% of the total project cost
  • It is based in a rural off mains gas grid location and is not connected to mains gas
  • It is a non-political project
  • Operates on a non-discriminatory basis
  • The funding would not be used for employment expenses (for example salary and overhead costs)
  • If relating to the provision of alternative energy/heating solutions, the funding would not be for an energy/heating source other than LPG
  • For more information about our eligibility criteria please visit our terms & conditions.

The ins and outs of supporting a project

The butcher, the baker, the movers and shakers – get them excited about your community project and proclaim it from the rooftops. Drumming up support from within (and outside) your community is so important. Those with the most public support in each funding category make it through to the finalist stage. Finalists will then be scored by a panel of impartial judges who will select the winners. 

This year’s winners have been chosen. Has a project in your community won their share of the £85,000 prize pot that was up for grabs?

Register for updates

How the scoring works

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Your project receives 1 point for every like or share. Remember to sign in and hit share on the Rural Community Fund project page itself  (this will take you to your social media to publish), rather than sharing somebody else’s share on social media.

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If someone is feeling generous and decides to donate to your project, your project will be awarded 10 points for their pledge. 

Here's what to expect, step by step:

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Natter, write, send

Our online application form is available from 9am on 10th March 2020. Check to see if your project is eligible for funding, complete the form and you might have a chance to dip into our £85,000 funding pot. 

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Time’s up

And stop. Fingers off your mouse. Application submissions close at 5pm on the 9th April 2020. If you meet and pass our eligibility criteria and diligence checks, you’ll have four weeks to take advantage of our top tips through our Accelerator Programme to make your project page the best it can be. It’ll soon be time to publically make some noise about your project.

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Form a community huddle

From 9am on 4th June 2020, involve all of your community and ask them to support your project. Your project receives 1 point for every like and share, and 10 points when someone pledges (donates)*. Projects with the highest scores will go through to the finals. 

*see terms and conditions for more info.

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Feet up and wait 

And that’s a wrap. At 5pm on 16th July 2020, the supporting stage will come to an end. The digital whizzes will be hard at work to get everything in line for the next step and further due diligence checks will take place on all shortlisted projects.

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A peak at the finalists

On 4th August 2020, we’ll announce our finalists for each of the three funding categories. 

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Judges do their thing

A panel of impartial judges will decide which projects will receive funding from the Rural Community Fund’s £85,000 pot. 

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The great reveal

And the winners are… On 19th August 2020, this year’s winners will be announced. 

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Splash the cash

Once the winners are announced, the funds are released. It's then time for your community to spend, spend, spend! The finalists who aren’t successful will also receive a £500 pledge to help them along the way.

Take raising money into your own hands and make the most of crowdfunding

start crowdfunding

When you set up your community project, you can then actively raise money through crowdfunding.

Get the word out

For every pledge (donation) that you receive during the supporting stage, your project will receive 10 points. 

Get funded

These points will put you in good stead for the next stage, as the projects with the most points in their funding category will make it through to the final. Better still, your community project will receive even more funds!

How are the winners chosen?

After the supporting stage, the projects with the highest number of points in each funding category will go through to the finals. A panel of impartial judges will then vote for their favourite projects, based on the following: 

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40% Impact

Judges will consider the potential impact of the project on the local community:

How urgent is the need in the community? How many people will be impacted by this project? Is the idea appealing to a broad cross-section of the community?

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35% Project sustainability

Judges will look at how long the project will last and how long it will benefit the community for. They will also consider how sustainable the project will be once it is launched:

How long will the project’s impact last in the community? Does the project only need funding from the Calor Rural Community Fund, or does it also require funding from alternative sources? Does this project have clear volunteer support? How likely is the project to achieve its goals?

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15% Submission

Judges will review the entry itself and how well it explained the project:

How much effort has gone into preparing the entry and supporting information? How well considered and clearly explained is the entry?

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10% Originality

Judges will consider how original the project is:

How original is your Calor Rural Community Fund project compared to the other projects submitted for funding

Funding schedule

start crowdfunding
Get funded
Get funded
Get funded