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Tower Hamlets ESF Community Grants Programme


We are pleased to launch the 2014-2020 ESF Community Employment Programme, which is co-financed by the London Borough of Tower Hamlets and the European Social Fund.

The Tower Hamlets ESF Community Grants Programme will address the root causes of poverty which create barriers to work, so more people move closer to or into employment. The programme will provide funding of up to £400,000 in grants over a nine month period and it is envisaged that up to 20 projects will be funded.

The Community Grants Programme will be embedded and delivered at the heart of the community by voluntary and community sector (VCS) organisations that have access to and are best positioned to meet the needs of local residents in partnership with the London Borough of Tower Hamlets.

The focus of this funding opportunity will be to support out-of-work Tower Hamlets residents.

The London Councils ESF Community Employment Programme will work under ESF Priority 1.4, to support people furthest away from the labour market, with awards:

  • of grants of £20,000
  • given to small non-governmental or VCS organisations in Tower Hamlets (eligibility criteria apply)
  • that support out-of-work Tower Hamlets residents to address barriers to working and move into or closer to the labour market.
  • for projects that will run for a maximum of nine months of delivery, with a further three months to close the project
  • for projects that contribute to the 2014-20 London European Structural & Investment Funds (ESIF) Strategy for London.

Community Employment grants will enable small third sector organisations that would not otherwise be able to access ESF, to access small grants through simplified application arrangements.

Grants will focus on progression towards the labour market, but will not duplicate provision that is available through mainstream activity. Grants will strengthen the ability of small third sector organisations to deliver employment and skills activities to disadvantaged people.

The Programme will engage, support and deliver innovative, individually tailored programmes with end to end support to meet the needs of local residents and add value to mainstream provision.

How to apply

London Councils has published an Application Prospectus which:

  • provides detailed information on Tower Hamlets ESF Community Grants Programme requirements
  • explains the scope of the programme
  • details eligibility guidelines
  • advises on the application process
  • outlines our procedures for making award decisions

All application and guidance documents are available to download from the right hand side of the webpage under related documents and includes:

  • Application Prospectus
  • Application form
  • London Councils ESF Eligibility Guidance
  • London Councils ESF Eligible Expenditure Guidance


London Councils will be running a workshop to outline the funding priorities, programme eligibility and application process for the Tower Hamlets ESF Community Grant Programme. The workshop will take place on the 25th October 2018 (10am-1pm) at:

Tower Hamlets Council
Town Hall
Mulberry Place
5 Clove Crescent
E14 2BG.

Please note that registration for the workshop is now closed (13.00 24 October 2018). 

Queries and FAQ’s

Should you have any queries and/or require further information on the Tower Hamlets ESF Community Grants Programme, please contact the London Councils Employment and Inclusion Team at [email protected].