Coronavirus update

Here to support you through the Covid-19 crisis

The Coronavirus has bought new and unexpected challenges to the voluntary, community and faith sector. We’re ready to help however we can and if we can’t help directly we’ll try and connect you to another source of help and advice.  We’ve set up a Covid-19 staff exchange to help you manage your staffing levels for essential work – find out more information. We’re also collecting information about the needs of the sector in Surrey at this unprecedented time and how we can plan for future resilience – complete our survey to tell us what kind of support you need.

At Surrey Community Action we’re supporting our staff, volunteers and the people and groups we help and looking at new ways of working so we can continue to deliver our services as far as possible.  Some services, like DBS checks, where we need to meet people have been suspended for the meantime but we’re trying to offer alternatives where we can.

Community support

The response to the crisis by the local community has been fantastic with new groups setting up across Surrey to help older and vulnerable people.  You can find details of these here and also from your local volunteer centre.  If you have set up or are thinking of setting up a new community group, then you can find some advice here or download this information sheet to help you run it as effectively and safely as possible.  You can also find helpful advice about DBS requirements for new volunteers here.

The BBC are also helping to promote the community support on offer – visit their website for more information about this. Surrey County Council’s new community helpline is there to direct the public to services that can help you or that they might be able to support during the coronavirus pandemic. There’s also a dedicated information page on their website.


The Community Foundation for Surrey has launched the Coronavirus Response Fund to support local charities and voluntary organisations that are assisting some of Surrey’s most vulnerable people.  The Chancellor has also announced a package of support and The National Lottery Community Fund is now open for applications.

The government has published details about how employers, including charities with no more than 250 staff can claim back statutory sick pay for workers absent due to Covid19:

There’s a new Covid-19 discretionary fund for small/micro businesses available via local authorities, to cover buildings or property costs for organisations with fewer than 50 employees, including charity properties getting charitable business rates relief, which are not eligible for small business rates relief or rural rate relief:

Here’s a round-up of some of the financial support available (shared with thanks to Surrey Youth Focus) and a funding newsletter from Woking Borough Council.

Information and guidance

The Charity Commission has issued guidance for the charity sector.  Surrey County Council has issued updated guidance for volunteers and for the voluntary sector.

The NCVO has taken down the paywall on all of their member-only advice & guidance: It’s free to all charities while the crisis continues. No sign-in needed.  The NCVO is also offering a range of free or subsidised support for members.

The Small Charities Coalition has a dedicated section about Covid-19 on its website while the Civil Society also has some information on what charities need to know.  The Fundraising Regulator has advice about events and the Institute of Fundraising has information for fundraisers.  The Lloyds Bank Foundation is running free webinars.

If you are part of a good neighbour scheme then we have advice for you .  Village hall or community building managers can also find up to date information.

If we can help you in other way – please get in touch!