Communities Minister Cara Ni Chuilin announced today the Charities Fund would reopen from on Monday, August 3, for a period of three weeks.
Said the Foyle MLA: “I am pleased the Minister has heeded my calls and proposals set out at Committee, to work with the Finance Minister and Executive colleagues to secure additional funding for the Charity and Voluntary Sector.
“The Charities Fund will reopen for an additional 3 weeks and I would urge all charities who missed out in the first round of funding to apply.
“The programme caters to groups of all sizes who are facing financial hardship as a result of COVID-19 and who are unable to cover unavoidable costs until September 30, 2020.
“Charities were among the first organisations affected from the outset of this pandemic, yet were the last to receive financial support.
“The delay in getting this scheme up and running was highly regrettable and the lack of expediency has no doubt caused a great deal of distress for many charities who have been left all but decimated without a means to generate an income.
“The Charity Sector has and continues to provide a lifeline to many vulnerable people within our communities.
“I welcome the extension of this vital programme and hope the distribution of these vital funds is treated with expediency to ensure charity organisations can continue to deliver key frontline services which will be critical in the months ahead.
“As a society, we cannot afford to lose them,” added Mr Durkan.