Applications for this fund have now closed.

However, we're still keen to hear from you if you have expertise in any of the challenge areas. Please sign up through this form. You will be paid for your time.


There are 7 Sector Challenges across four sectors most affected by COVID-19: early years; financial wellbeing; mental health and wellbeing; and sexual abuse and domestic violence.

For each challenge, we are funding three - five charity or civil society organisations working in that area to come together with a digital partner to explore solutions using digital, data and design.

The Sector Challenge Programme is part of the Catalyst and The National Lottery Community Fund COVID-19 Digital Response fund.

The programme will be run by CAST, a technology charity, and supported by Shift, a design charity, and DOT PROJECT, a digital cooperative, who will provide support to two cause areas each.

Why get involved

This consultation provides an opportunity to :

  • Advance your skills and knowledge
  • Share experiences and ideas with your peers
  • Be part of designing an approach or solution which has a meaningful impact on the sector you work in, and the communities you support

Key dates

  • Projects Begin: 11th January 2021
  • Projects End: 26th March 2021

Digital Partner selection

The open contracting process we have to follow under National Lottery contracting guidelines dictates that you cannot select your digital partner as all partner applications have to be assessed in exactly the same way to ensure that only the best are successful. However, we are interested to know if you have previously worked well with a digital partner and we will consider ‘good fit’ when selecting digital partners.


Be consulted


Application templates

Before applying, you can prepare your application in our template: