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The National Emergency Trust has announced £1.5 million of funding to support grassroots Disabled Peoples Organisations (DPOs) across the UK to respond to the Covid-19 needs of Disabled people[1].  The funding will be administered and distributed through a partnership of DPOs across the UK[2]

What work will the DPO Covid-19 Emergency Fund?

The DPO Covid-19 Emergency Fund aims to support DPOs to meet the needs of local Disabled people. We are looking to fund Covid-19 related work in the following broad three areas:

  • Independent living: covering any Covid-19 related issues affecting Disabled people’s choice and control over their lives for example: Covid-19 changes to the built environment, streetscape andtransport, advice and advocacy support to help ensure health and social care needs are met, employment advice or advice to individuals about their rights if they feel they need to continue to shield

  • Isolation: covering work to tackle isolation for example: providing IT equipment and support so people can access on-line support or setting up and running peer support networks

  • Income: covering work to support Disabled people to access benefits and entitlements and manage debt issues

Who can apply for funding?

Any DPO in the UK can apply if at least 51% of your governing body or management committee are made up of Disabled people and you have a constitution/governing document (you do not need to be a registered charity) that shows your organisation is set up to support Disabled people and/or advance Disabled people’s equality and inclusion.

Organisations must be fit for funding. This means having good governance, appropriate financial management policies and processes in place and appropriate standards of safeguarding for staff, volunteers and those using their support or services.

As part of our application checks organisations are required to show they have the following:

• A governing document e.g. a constitution which explains your organisation’s aims

• Relevant Safeguarding & Diversity & Inclusion Policies 

• A bank account in the organisation’s name

• Recent annual accounts (which have been independently examined or audited if required).


[1] We use the term Disabled people to mean all groups of people with impairments including: people with learning difficulties, people who experience mental distress, people with a visual impairment, Deaf people, people who are neuro diverse, people with long term health conditions and people with physical impairments  

[2] DPO partners are: Disability Action Northern Ireland, Inclusion Scotland, Disability Wales and Inclusion London who in turn will be working with 6 regional DPOs across England