Does your organisation offer industry-specific or soft-skills training? ESFA Community Training grants between £5,000 and £20,000 are available for projects supporting people who are unemployed or economically inactive, helping participants move closer towards employment.

Groundwork London is delivering Community Training Grants, which is funded by the European Social Fund (ESF) and the Education and Skills Funding Agency (ESFA). The Community Training Grants aim to benefit those who are furthest away from the labour market, and start participants’ progress back into employment. In addition to formal and industry-specific skills training this can also be activities which have softer benefits, such as work readiness, confidence or anger management. Participants must be over 16 years or age and eligible to work in the UK.

Applications for ESFA Community Training Grants closed on Friday 21st January 2022. However, if you’re interested, you can complete the form to demonstrate expression of interest should additional ESFA funds become available. Follow the links below for more information.


The course we ran thanks to the ESFA grant was the most rewarding cob course we have ever run. We applied for the grant as we have experienced time and again how life changing working and building with cob can be for peopleBuilding with Earth (Dorset)

Groundwork London is administering the grants in four Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) areas across London and South of England. These are:

ESFA Community Training grants are available in



Click here to apply for a grant

The GroW programme is about going to where women are – local children’s centres, schools, jobcentres and libraries and helping them to where they want to be – GroW Newham (London)

The Community Training Grants aims to provide support to smaller grassroots organisations and that are closest to those who face barriers to employment and training. Groundwork London as administrator will also work with those applicant organisations to help build their capacity at delivering. Types of organisations that are eligible:

  • Charities, Community Interest Companies, Charitable Incorporate Organisations, Social Enterprises, Community Groups
  • Third Sector Organisations and Small Organisations (49 or less employees and a turnover of less than 10 million Euros)

Note: Your organisation needs to have a bank account.

Green Health Thames Valley provides support for clients with mental health difficulties through tailored, horticulture-based programmes enabling participants to improve their life skills, confidence, motivation and independence – Progression Through Horticulture (Thames Valley Berkshire)

Applications and expressions of interest for round 13 are now open for Dorset, Thames Valley Berkshire & London.

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If you have any queries or questions about your application, please do get in touch with the grants team on or call 020 7239 1390


  • Our easy to use online application portal has been updated based on feedback from previous grantees to better support applicants with their application.
  • We’ve update the payout structure to include 40% on award of your grant, an additional 40% during delivery of project and 20% on completion.

Please sign up to the mailing list for regular news and updates on ESFA Community Training Grants. If you have any queries please do get in touch with the grants team on or call 020 7239 1390

About the Funders

The Education and Skills Funding Agency (ESFA) is accountable for funding education and skills for children, young people and adults.

The European Social Fund (ESF) invests in opportunities across the European Union, with a focus on improving employment and education.

ESFA and ESF are co-financing Community Training Grants to offer skills, training and employment opportunities for individuals who are unemployed or economically inactive. ESFA in London is managed by the Greater London Authority who acts as the Intermediate Body for ESFA under the strategic direction of the Mayor and the London Economic Action Partnership (LEAP).