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Building Better Opportunities now open for applications

The Big Lottery Fund has launched its Building Better Opportunities Fund for local projects that tackle poverty and promote social inclusion.

Building Better Opportunities (BBO) is matched by the European Social Fund (ESF) 2014-2020 Programme and around £175 million is now available in 25 Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) Areas across England.  Further funding opportunities in 12 other LEP areas will open in autumn 2015.

What kind of projects will it fund?

The BBO will support a wide range of projects that provide help for those with multiple and complex needs and help them to develop skills and tools to overcome barriers to work, education and training.  This could include improving digital and financial literacy, and helping build confidence and self-esteem. Extra support will be given to hard to reach and socially-excluded groups, including people with disabilities, mental health or addiction issues, those who are homeless, ex-offenders and people living in isolated rural areas.

Supporting Applicants

Big Lottery Fund has awarded £950,000 to Baker Tilly, in partnership with Ecorys UK, to support potential applicants and grant holders to understand, plan for and deliver the additional requirements that come with managing European funding.

For information about this support visit the BBO ESF Support website

How to apply

The application process consists of two stages. Stage one is fully open and competitive and from this, the Big Lottery will select a shortlist of applicants to take through to stage two.

Any organisation is eligible to apply, however most of the projects may be better suited to partnership working – see the Big Lottery’s summary of their partnership requirements.

Deadline for applications for stage 1 is noon on 03 August 2015.

More information

Follow the hashtag #BigLotteryESF or go the Big Lottery Fund’s website www.biglotteryfund.org.uk/esf for further information.