Comic Relief and Walkers have launched a new fund, ‘Smiles’, which will award up to 12 charities grants of £100,000 to £300,000.
The grants aim to support UK organisations that use the arts and comedy to challenge mental health stigma and help individuals at risk of experiencing poor mental wellbeing.
It will support organisations that focus on “early intervention and community-based approaches” and prioritise working with people with lived experience of the issues the fund is trying to address.
Charities with incomes of between £75,000 and £10m are eligible to apply.
'It’s never felt more important to be investing in mental wellbeing'
Aleema Shivji, executive director of impact and investment at Comic Relief, said: “The impact of the pandemic on mental health is a huge concern and we are so pleased that together with Walkers, we will be able to offer more funding to charities focused on improving mental wellbeing across the country.
“It’s never felt more important to be investing in mental wellbeing services and support, and we’re really excited to get this new fund off the ground.”
Funding is available for a minimum of 18 months to a maximum of 30 months, and it is “happy to fund proposals which include a mixture of project delivery and core costs”.
“We know that demand for investment into mental wellbeing services is high, and therefore we expect to receive a high number of applications for this fund,” Comic Relief said.
The programme is part of a £2m partnership, announced by Comic Relief and Walkers earlier this year, to help more people access mental wellbeing support in the UK.