A NEW £150,000 pot has been made available to support community groups struggling during the coronavirus crisis.

The funds have been made available to Brighton and Hove City Council and grants of up to £5,000 can be given to organisations across the city.

The money could also be used to support “residents who are vulnerable through their social circumstances, including their accommodation”.

Councillor Alan Robins, chairman of the tourism, equalities, communities and culture committee, said: “Everyone is pulling together at this time, and we want to provide financial support to those community groups who are doing a fantastic job helping to support vulnerable people across the city.”

The authority will have access to £50,000 immediately, with the remaining budget being released over two further stages. Vulnerable residents who might miss out on other support available will be prioritised when the money is distributed.

The council said groups to benefit from the money could include “a service which supports people who are vulnerable with other underlying health conditions, including disabilities or mental health conditions” or “a service which supports younger residents who are vulnerable through their lifestyles”.

Anyone wishing to apply for a grant from the emergency fund has to visit the council’s Communities Fund page online, with the authority saying decisions will be made within two to three weeks of applications reaching it.

Grants will be given to community groups looking to cover running costs including volunteer expenses, transport, staff costs as well as “small capital costs that support organisational delivery during the emergency”.

The new fund is also designed to help afford specific costs that enable an organisation to adapt the delivery of services during the emergency.

The deadline to apply for round one of funding is May 24. The deadline for rounds two and three are July 26 and October 25 respectively.