The COVID-19 Film and TV Emergency Relief Fund created by The Film and TV Charity in partnership with the BFI is now open for applications until 22 April.

The initiative was established recently in a bid to help ease the concerning impact that the coronavirus pandemic has had on the industry. After receiving generous donations amassing a total of £2.5 million from the likes of Netflix, BBC Studios, BBC Content, the National Lottery, Warner Media, as well as a few private donors, they are now ready to offer one-off grants from £500 to £2,500 to freelancers working in film, TV and cinema that have been financially affected by the crisis.

Research conducted by The Film and TV Charity shows that 93% of industry freelancers no longer working due to the crisis, and three thirds (74%) are not expected to receive any support since they are either ineligible for the government’s Self-employment Income Support Scheme or have not been furloughed as PAYE freelancers under the Job Retention Scheme.

Alex Pumfrey, CEO of The Film & TV Charity, said, ‘Unprecedented times call for an exceptional response. The Covid-19 Film and TV Emergency Relief Fund is unique, time-limited and designed to provide financial support where the need is most acute. Our systems will highlight applicants who are experiencing particular distress and our experienced team will respond to those red flags with personal follow-up calls.’

Ben Roberts, chief executive of the BFI, added, ‘We know a huge number of freelance professionals in our community have been some of the hardest hit during the coronavirus crisis, so we are delighted that the fund is now open for applications. We are also incredibly thankful for the generosity shown by industry partners and individuals who have stepped in so far to support their colleagues.’

The applications will be carefully assessed based on need, and not on a first-come, first-served basis.

Applications will close: 6pm Wednesday 22nd April 2020

For details on eligibility and how to apply head over to The Film and TV Charity’s website.