“I want to acknowledge and celebrate the critical role being played by volunteers, charities and third sector organisations in protecting the wellbeing of Wales, its people and communities.
“With fundraising events on hold due to the pandemic, these organisations are facing a particularly challenging time, but they are still continuing to provide much-needed help and support in our response to Covid-19.
“I recognise the invaluable contribution this sector makes, and that’s why I want to draw attention to funding support the Welsh Government has put in place to help.
“There are two streams of funding available through the Welsh Government Third Sector Covid-19 Response Fund, both of which can be accessed through Wales Council for Voluntary Action (WCVA).
“Ahead of the Chancellor’s announcement last week, we announced £24m funding to support charities and the third sector across Wales through the Covid-19 crisis. This is significantly more than we will receive as a consequential from UK Government.
“The first funding stream is the Third Sector Resilience Fund. This fund will provide direct financial support to charities and third sector organisations through the Covid-19 crisis to help pay bills and ease cash-flow.
“The Voluntary Services Emergency Fund will support third sector organisations in the community to co-ordinate the massive volunteer response we have seen across Wales. This fund will help organisations cover the out of pocket expenses of their volunteers. To date, 29 organisations have applied for funding.
“Applications for Welsh Government funding through the WCVA website are already being taken, and I want to encourage more eligible organisations to apply for funding.
“The First Minister recently announced details of the £500m Economic Resilience Fund, which will provide additional financial support to organisations which are experiencing a sharp drop in trading as a result of the coronavirus pandemic. This fund will help organisations to manage cash flow pressures.
“This fund will reach a significant number of charities and social enterprises, but we’re aware that not all will be eligible. We are therefore calling on the UK Government to provide further financial support for Welsh organisations, and to make sure that funding from the UK Government schemes already announced reach businesses quickly.
“Charities can use the Covid-19 Business Support Eligibility Checker to check their eligibility.
“Finally, I want to say to all the volunteer groups and charities who are supporting the people of Wales right now – thank you. You are amazing.”