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UK Community Renewal Fund - Sunderland

This programme has now closed.

The UK Government launched the £220 million UK Community Renewal Fund (CRF) programme in March 2021.  It was introduced as the pilot programme for the new UK Shared Prosperity Fund and included the following priorities for investment:

·         Investment in skills

·         Investment for local business

·         Investment in communities and place

·         Supporting people into employment.

Full details of the CRF programme can be found at New levelling up and community investments - GOV.UK (

Sunderland City Council, as the Lead Authority for CRF in Sunderland, was required to co-ordinate a competitive call for projects, review and prioritise individual project bids, and submit an over-arching bid to the UK Government.  Five of the projects submitted by Sunderland City Council in its bid were approved by the UK Government.  Details of all CRF project approvals (and unsuccessful projects) can be found at UK Community Renewal Fund: successful and unsuccessful bids - GOV.UK (


The CRF programme delivery period operated from November 2021 until December 2022

UK Community Renewal Fund in Sunderland

The 5 projects delivered in Sunderland were:

·         Community Renewal Grants (£514,566)

Distribution of grants to Third Sector Organisation to deliver one-to-one, wrap around support to those hardest to help and furthest away from the labour market to provide targeted into-employment support. 

·         Future Markets Acceleration Programme (£196,218)

A Package of innovation support for Sunderland business to unlock a greater share of emergent markets through over 30 partners working as 'Innovation Delivery Partnerships' (IDPs).

·         Innovate for Good (£533,867)

A programme of tailored support to enable Social Entrepreneurs to develop, pivot and innovate their business in line with market opportunities through a blend of workshops, peer-to-peer support, business advice, coaching and mentoring to accelerate development, promote collaboration and increase impact plus Recovery & Innovation Growth Grants of up to £10,000.

·         REACT (£146,316)

A project to engage workless residents of Sunderland and support them to identify their transferable skills, improve their existing skill base and improve their opportunities to progress towards securing employment.

·         Strengthening the Sunderland Voluntary and Community Sector (£204,000)

A partnership project:

o   To give local people the opportunity to undertake a volunteer training programme in the Voluntary and Community sector (VCS)

o   To provide local people with a Volunteer Pathway and gain experience in VCS practice

o   To develop the skills and experience of local people with regard to Community Development related issues and project/programme development. 

o   To enable local people to gain employment in the sector.


End of project evaluations were independently commissioned for each project and submitted to Government as part of the programme closure requirements.  

For queries regarding the CRF programme delivered in Sunderland please contact the External Funding Team at

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