Aviva Community Fund

Backing the ideas that move communities forward

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What is the Aviva Community Fund?

The Aviva Community Fund helps small charities build stronger communities across the UK by focusing on climate change or helping people take control of their financial wellbeing.

Over the years we’ve helped thousands of small causes, and now we’ve teamed up with Crowdfunder to help charities and social enterprises grow even more.

The causes that make the biggest splash are those that can test their ground-breaking ideas without risk. Ideas around recycling ocean plastic and breaking down barriers to work have taken flight, and our talented workforce boosts them through funding, coaching, volunteering, and practical guidance.

After all, it takes people to make a community. People who care, who have ideas, and who take the time to look out for one another and their neighbourhoods.

Person planting a tree

How to get involved

We know that now, more than ever, small charities and community groups need our support. And we want to help your organisation.

Here are a few things to think about before you submit your application.

Make sure that your project:

  • is submitted by an applicant aged 18 or older
  • is UK-based and for the benefit of UK communities
  • isn’t for the benefit of any one individual

And that your organisation:

  • is registered in the UK as a charity or social enterprise
  • has a bank account in its own name and has been operating for over 12 months

If it ticks all these boxes, that’s a great start.

Then, your charity needs to be focused on either:

  • Climate action – promoting thriving communities by preventing, preparing for, and protecting against the impacts of climate change
  • Financial wellbeing – helping people take control of their finances by giving them the tools to be more financially independent and ready for anything

If it is, you sound right up our street.

We’re also looking for ideas that:

  • develop a new approach, product, or technology
  • implement a new initiative or pilot a new scheme
  • grow existing services in a new area or beneficiary group
  • change services to meet today's needs without compromising those of future generations

Does your cause tick at least one of the boxes above? If so, you might be just what we’re looking for. 

Then you need to think about how your project will strengthen your community and help people to live healthier, happier lives.

For example:

  • If you submit a woodland regen project, how would it help the community as well as the environment? Will it improve the quality of life for those who live in the area? Will it create new connections, or boost the economy? Can people get involved in activities there? 
  • If you submit a project helping people reach their long-term employment goal, how are you doing it? What skills are they learning? How are you dealing with any psychological or societal barriers to employment? What impact will your plans have on the wider community?

If you fit the criteria above, we’d love to hear from you. There are a few more details you might want to clue yourself up on though.

Here’s where you can find out more about whether your project is eligible.

How does it work?

The Aviva Community Fund backs small charities with forward-thinking ideas and gives more causes the resources and sustainable support they need.

Step 1 of 8

Take part

Applications are open all year, with funding rounds every quarter. There’s funding of up to £50,000 for new, fresh ideas. Plus, our Knowledge Library and volunteer opportunities are at your disposal.

Step 2 of 8

Take a close look

When applying, you’ll see our eligibility requirements. Check over them closely and make sure your idea meets them.

Step 3 of 8

Ready to take off

We’ll check your application to see if it’s eligible. In the meantime, take a look at the support and resources we offer that can help you make the most of your campaign.

Step 4 of 8

Take it away

Once Crowdfunder pages go live, you can share your project with your supporters to raise donations.

Step 5 of 8

Take advantage of the fund

A week later Projects then open to our employee donations – they’ll take a look at them and share out £250,000 of funding.

Step 6 of 8

Take your time

You’ll have some time to get donations from our employees. But don’t worry if you don’t reach your fundraising target, you can still keep your page open and continue public fundraising.

Step 7 of 8

Take it to the next level

If you’ve reached your fundraising target, congratulations. You have the funds and new supporters to help make your idea a reality.

Step 8 of 8

Take them on a journey

People have donated, they’ve connected with your cause. So, make sure you keep your donors clued up on the great things you’re achieving.

Discover the differences we’ve made

Small charities and organisations are building stronger communities across the UK, and we’re so happy it’s with our help. Here are just a few of the projects we’ve supported:

The Feed

Tulse Hill Straw Bale Build

Plastic@Bay

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Transcript

‘When you eat with The Feed, whether it’s our catering services or our café, all of our food is packed full of meaning. We support people off the street, into the kitchen and enable people to really change their lives.’

‘We’re passionate and people and we’re passionate about food.’

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Transcript

‘Oh brilliant, that’s amazing’

We surprised some of our Aviva Climate Fund projects with some exciting news….

‘We’re going to give you an extra £10,000!’

‘Wow! That’s fantastic’

‘They really just wanted a hall for the church. As the project developed, our focus become much on it being a hall for the whole community. Its just a fantastic thing to be part of.’

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Transcript

‘Its important to give ocean plastic a second life because if we don’t recycle it, it ends up in landfill. To deal with that then, we decided to make kind of low-tech plastic recycling machines and that’s what we’re doing at the moment in our lab.’

The Feed is a social enterprise, not just a café. Their four-week training course teaches people the key skills for working in the hospitality industry. And after the course, trainees get another four weeks of work experience to help them progress even further.

A lot of the trainees have gone through homelessness, substance misuse, and mental health problems – complex issues that can have significant impacts on self-esteem. The Feed realised that to be employed long-term, these people would need therapy as well as training.

All the café’s profits are spent on training and therapy for people who are facing barriers to employment.

Read more
 

See more of our successful projects

Building a new hall for Tulse Hill’s Holy Trinity Church evolved when the team behind it looked at using straw bales for building materials. The idea was to fight climate change by creating a community hub that isn’t just carbon neutral, but carbon negative – which means using materials and techniques that store up CO2, not release it.

Agricultural straw is used to make compressed bales – maybe surprisingly, it’s fire-resistant and extremely strong. And that’s just the start…

Read more

Plastic@Bay raised £5,000 to develop machines that recycle ocean plastic from local beaches. With the help of the Aviva Community Fund, their Plastic Lab is developing machine prototypes that make fence posts from waste plastic.

The organisation picks up between 5-10 tons of plastic waste from local beaches each year – and could pick up even more with additional helpers.

Read more

Facebook support group

Join the conversation and help your project thrive.

Let's do this!

We want to help your Aviva Community Fund campaign be as successful as it can be. Join our busy Facebook group for daily tips and guidance, share ideas with other projects, gain new skills and keep updated with opportunities created to help your cause thrive.

Here for you every step of the way

“The Facebook group is informative, useful and very positive and encouraging. It’s extremely useful and a great tool to use.”

Need volunteers?

Could your organisation do with a helping hand or two? We give every Aviva employee 21 hours each year to switch their day job for community volunteering. So, if your cause could benefit from the skills, expertise or people power of the Aviva workforce, we’d love to hear how our ready and willing volunteers could lend a hand.

Get in touch
Two people smiling in the park

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Please read our Aviva Community Fund privacy notice.