Cumbria community cost of living crisis grant

28th November 2022

Community groups and organisations across Cumbria are being offered financial support to help relieve the hardship of people who are experiencing financial struggles.

The current cost of living is forcing more people across our county into poverty. Many households who were ‘just about managing’ have been hard hit along with one in eight households whose income is less than £10,000 per year.

Working in partnership with Cumbria County Council, Cumbria Community Foundation is offering funding to charitable organisations that support interventions to help people who are struggling financially.

The Community Hardship Fund is providing grants of up to £10,000 to support activities that help people in financial hardship.

Funding can be used for practical skills such as budgeting and cooking courses or to buy equipment for community lunches, and schemes that help people to meet pressing needs, such as essential household items. The grants will cover costs to sustain a service that support people in financial hardship e.g., foodbanks, food pantries and hubs and additional staff costs to deliver increased activities or coordinate a service.

The Rock Youth Project in Carlisle received a grant to support low-income families by offering regular cooking classes and twice weekly coffee mornings. Funding also contributed to the cost of purchasing a washing machine for use by the local community, and a larger oven.

Vickie Harkness, Youth Lead, said: “We adapt to the needs of the community and have opened our doors to everyone, not just those supported by our youth provision. This funding will support those who are suffering from the cost of living crisis. We plan to reduce isolation, give families a safe space to collect all the essentials whilst meeting others, and most importantly ensure they don’t need to worry about how they can afford the things that meet their basic needs.

“This project has given us the opportunity to pair up with different agencies where we can also provide entertainment for younger children to give parents and carers a well-deserved break and take part in some activities that will teach them new skills.”

Other grants have been used to provide emergency help for struggling families supported by Howgill Family Centre, and a healthy food growing project run by Cleator Moor based Home to Work.

Annalee Holliday, Senior Grants, Programmes & Communications Officer, said: “We know there is increased need across the county with food banks running out of food and more and more people unable to afford to eat or heat their homes to a safe level. This new fund will support projects that are keeping people fed and warm and provide additional practical support and advice to help people cope throughout this period of great hardship.”

To apply for funding, visit or contact Annalee Holiday via or on 01900 825760.