The Small Charities Challenge Fund is open to charities with annual incomes of less than £250,000

Development charities with annual incomes of less than £250,000 are being urged to apply for grants of up to £50,000 from the Department for International Development.

The Small Charities Challenge Fund is open to small, UK-registered charities for projects running for up to two years and which focus on strengthening the capacity of grass-roots development organisations and work with the poor, vulnerable and most marginalised.

The fund is looking for charities that carry out work in DfID’s priority countries towards achieving the global development goals.

The fund will particularly welcome applications for projects that work on securing better outcomes for widows, according to a DfID statement.

The SCCF is a rolling fund, with reviews of applications every six months. The next deadline is 5pm on Thursday 28 March 2019.

The SCCF has so far funded 16 charities.

Lord Bates, the Minister of State for International Development, said: “I know that sometimes charities with smaller incomes that work in development have felt as if the government hasn’t fully recognised the way smaller charities can punch well above their weight when it comes to making a difference on the global stage. I want to put that right.”

He said the scheme’s application process was designed to be as simple as possible, in recognition of the fact that small charities often had very few staff members.

“We want to convey the message that it doesn’t matter where you are based or how many people you have working for you. If you are passionate about making a difference, we’re passionate about helping you do it.”

Bates said he wanted to see grant recipients who were diverse, ambitious and high-achieving, and hoped that by encouraging a wide range of charities to participate, the scheme would be able to build an “inclusive, learning community”.

“I would therefore encourage anyone who feels like their charity could benefit from this scheme to apply for our next round of funding before it closes at the end of March,” he said.

Further information and the scheme’s application form can be found here.