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A - Z Guidance

Essential for all Applicants

BBC Children in Need requires all organisations to meet our minimum standards for grantmaking. We expect all grant applications to reflect these core principles (click each subject below to open a detailed answer):

We expect projects to focus on addressing issues of disadvantage affecting children and young people. We define disadvantage as:

  • Illness, distress, abuse or neglect.
  • Any kind of disability.
  • Behavioural or psychological difficulties.
  • Living in poverty or situations of deprivation.

When making an application, you need to:

  • Show that a clear majority of children to benefit from a grant are experiencing disadvantage.
  • Tell us about the children and young people your project is working with.
  • Describe how the disadvantages they experience affect their lives.
  • Describe how you reach the disadvantaged children and young people who can benefit most from the project.
  • Tell us how you will target the hardest to reach children and young people.

You must show how you will protect children and young people in your care, and support them to develop. Your application will need to demonstrate that:

  • Your organisation has its own Safeguarding Children and Young People Policy and procedures
    • This policy is in your organisation’s name
    • Everyone involved – including the children and young people – knows about your policy and procedures, and uses them in day-to-day work
    • Your policy gives clear steps to take in the event of an incident or concern
    • This should include who to inform, and how to contact them
  • Your organisation has a named person responsible for safeguarding
  • Appropriate and regular background checks are carried out
    • This applies to all staff, volunteers, and committee members who work directly with children and young people
  • All staff, volunteers, and committee members receive safeguarding children training
  • Safeguarding training is relevant to people’s roles, covers your organisation’s policy, and is updated regularly
  • Your organisation takes appropriate steps to ensure the children and young people in your care are safe and supported
  • This could be by doing risk assessments, or by requiring supervisors to hold relevant qualifications

These measures help to ensure the child or young person in your care has a good experience when taking part in your work.

If your funding request is progressed to full application stage, we will want to find out more about your approach to safeguarding.

Children and young people are at the centre of everything we do. All children have the right to protection from harm. We recognise our responsibility to safeguard the welfare of all children and young people we work with. We commit to practice that protects them.

We are not and cannot be an expert in safeguarding. We work alongside the NSPCC and other leading organisations to promote best practice in safeguarding children and young people.

The NSPCC website has resources on safeguarding children and young people in the voluntary and community sector. Please pay particular attention to the following guidance:

We also recommend that you look at Everyone’s Business: Safeguarding for Trustees from Children England. Additional safeguarding advice and resource can also be found on the NCVO and the Charity Commission websites.

When making an application, you need to show:

  • How you have taken children and young people’s views into account when planning the work and the differences it will make in their lives
  • How you will continue to consult and involve them as the work progresses
  • How any children and young people involved in running or managing areas of the work will be supported

We know that there may be reasons why some work may only offer limited consultation. You will need to be able to explain why this is the case.

We don’t fund work that statutory bodies (such as schools or local authorities) have a duty to provide. We do not fund work that duplicates or substitutes these activities.

We can consider applications for additional services that are beyond the state’s responsibility. In these cases, we would expect you to show clear evidence that this is an additional service.

A to Z Policies and Guidance

The following is an A to Z of policy and guidance information for applicants.

We want to make sure that you don’t waste time applying for things we don’t fund. You will find valuable details on our expectations here. Some are relevant to every application, for example safeguarding. Some are important for certain types of requests, for example, counselling or equipment.

We don’t fund general awareness-raising, or issue-based educational work where the target group is not specifically identified. This applies where the work is aimed at a general population of children and young people.

For us to consider activity in this area, you must show that it’s specifically targeted at:

  • Children and young people already disadvantaged by the issue, or
  • Children and young people at particular risk of being disadvantaged by it

Examples might include work focused on issues such as sexual abuse, domestic violence, or alcohol/drug use

We don’t fund capital or building projects. This includes new construction, as well as renovation or conversion of existing premises and venues.

We will not fund fixed equipment (e.g. boilers, lighting, etc), or non-fixed equipment that totals over £20,000 (e.g. play/sensory).

(See also: Equipment)

We do not consider applications to fund:

  • Bursaries
  • Sponsorship or subsidy for fee-charging activities that are unaffordable for disadvantaged children and young people
  • Examples might include places at fee-charging organisations offering drama classes, playgroups, or sports coaching

We may consider work where a majority of children and young people involved are disadvantaged, and where any fees charged are not a barrier to those taking part.

(See also: Fees)

Charitable Incorporated Organisations are eligible to apply, and should be registered with the Charity Commission (or OSCR in Scotland) in the same way as charities.

The documents you’ll need to provide in each nation are the same as those we require from charities.

We will only consider applications for over £15,000 per year from charitable organisations who have registered with the appropriate regulatory body.

  • These include the Charity Commission for England and Wales, Charity Commission for Northern Ireland and the Scottish Charity Register
  • If you are a Company limited by Guarantee, you must have registered with Companies House

(See also: Governing Document or Constitution)

We consider work with a childcare element, including crèches, only when the focus is on providing a quality developmental experience for the children themselves.

We may consider applications for work that supports parents, or which offer training in parenting skills, as long as it will directly benefit the lives of children and young people. Very clear evidence of these outcomes will need to be provided.

If your work directly supports certain groups of especially vulnerable children and young people, you’ll be unable to apply for less than £15,001 per year.

  • In particular, this means work with children affected by child sexual exploitation, child criminal exploitation, or serious youth violence.
  • Our approach to funding work in these areas involves making larger grants, and building deeper relationships with delivery organisations.

We do not fund work that promotes religion.

Churches can apply for other types of work. You will be asked to submit your annual accounts to us during the application process. Where possible, these should be the accounts that will hold the funding you’re applying for.

As part of your application, we may ask you to show:

  • How project decisions will be made (this should involve more than one person)
  • How financial decisions will be made (this should involve more than one person)
  • Your legal status

We will consider applications from properly constituted and registered CICs that:

  • Have three or more unrelated directors
  • Have a appropriate ‘asset lock’ clause in the Articles of Association. This shows that your organisation’s assets will be distributed to a named not-for-profit organisation with similar charitable aims in the event of closure
  • Are CLGs (Companies Limited by Guarantee, as opposed to Companies Limited by Shares)

CICs must be set up and registered as such with Companies House. You should be able to provide a registration number.

CICs must also show that the work is focused on the needs and aspirations of children and young people. This must be over and above the business needs of the company. Applications should show how the work responds to a clearly identified need. They should also take the views of children and young people into account.

Here are links to some useful information from the Office of the Regulator of Community Interest Companies:

(See also: Social Enterprises)

All organisations should show a strong culture of supporting online safety and digital resilience for children and young people. Your Safeguarding Children Policy should cover how you ensure safe, responsible online activity by staff and children.

Policy must be age-appropriate, and relevant to the organisation’s activity. It should evidence effective controls and support in digital environments, including:

  • Supporting and empowering young people to manage their online lives more effectively
  • Supporting and developing digital resilience for young people in age-appropriate ways
  • Relevant recent updates to core Safeguarding Policy, procedures, training, and Code of Conduct
  • Unified approach to the real and virtual worlds that children, staff and volunteers will be active in
  • Suitable privacy controls for young people using interactive technology

For more information, please refer to NSPCC’s Online Safety resources.

Thinkuknow also provides an online education programme dedicated to protecting children and young people, run by CEOP (the Child Exploitation and Online Protection Command).

For more resources to help young people self-manage their online lives, we recommend BBC Children’s Own It.

Organisations that already hold a grant from us can apply to our Project Costs or Core Costs streams, as long as the current funding is due to end within 12 months.

Both our Project and Core streams support work for up to three years. Being a current or previous grantee is no guarantee of being offered further funding. We will consider each application on its own merits, and in line with our National and Regional areas of interest.

If you’re successful in applying for another grant, we will not release any new funds until we’ve signed off on your final report for the previous award. You will need to start spending the new grant within 12 months of the date it is awarded.

Our Core Costs funding stream supports essential organisational and administrative spending. These are the key expenses required to keep your organisation running.

Core Costs funding can be spent on your organisation’s central day-to-day operations. These might include, for example:

  • Management and administration
  • HR and payroll
  • General office expenses
  • Accountancy and audit
  • Communications and outreach
  • Monitoring, evaluation, and learning
  • Governance, regulatory, and compliance costs

Our Core Costs funding stream is for charities and not-for-profit organisations. Applicants to this programme can apply for grants for up to three years. We aim to give quicker decisions for grants of £15,000 or less per year.

Please view our full Core Costs Funding Stream page for further details.

(See also: Project Costs)

We define counselling as any therapeutic intervention that provides ‘professional assistance and guidance in resolving personal or psychological problems.’

This includes, but is not limited to counselling, group therapy, play therapy, art therapy.

We expect all organisations offering formal, professional counselling or therapeutic interventions to:

  • Employ professionally qualified counsellors with:
    • experience of working with children and/or young people
    • access to appropriate clinical supervision
    • active records of continued professional development
  • Provide accessible counselling in suitably private but safe settings (for clients and counsellors)
  • Be seen as a non-stigmatising service within the community
  • Work within current legislation and guidance
  • Assure confidentiality within usual ethical and safeguarding limits
  • Show flexibility around local diversity and access needs
  • Work in coordination with other services and agencies, while upholding appropriate confidentiality
  • Be a member of a professional body (e.g. British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy)
  • Adhere to an established ethical framework and complaints process
  • Employ approachable counsellors with good listening skills, to build safe and trusting relationships

Services delivered by colleagues who are not fully qualified must be supervised by experienced and qualified staff. There must be systems in place to ensure safety for clients, workers, and the service.

For more information refer to BACP (British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy).

Please note, we are unlikely to fund work taking place during school time. We expect work to take place before or after school, during lunch breaks, or in holiday periods. (See also: Schools and school-time work)

We recognise the Social Model of Disability. This states that there is an unequal relationship within society, and the needs of people with impairments are often not given enough consideration. This can result in social exclusion.

As a result of the barriers faced by disabled children and young people, they may also experience other disadvantages. These can include poverty, isolation, reduced access to leisure and friendship, illness, and restricted opportunities.

We want our funds to support disabled children and young people in ways that:

  • Improve their choice and opportunity
  • Enhance their abilities
  • Encourage their independence
  • Build their confidence and self-esteem
  • Show disabled young people and adults as positive role models
  • Counter negative attitudes and barriers to participation
  • Recognise the needs of families and carers

We will not fund any work that reinforces negative stereotypes of disabled children and young people. We expect you to comply with the Equalities Act (2010).

To apply for work involving young children, you need to show that it falls outside of national and/or local statutory provision.

You also need to show that the work directly benefits disadvantaged children, rather than their parents.

Applications may be considered from voluntary organisations that provide services within local authority children’s centres. The voluntary partner applying must be the lead organisation for the work.

(See also: Statutory overlap, duplication, or substitution)

We will not fund fixed equipment (e.g. boilers, lighting, etc), or non-fixed equipment that totals over £20,000 (e.g. play/sensory).

We do not fund equipment for the use of – or that will become the property of – a statutory body such as a school or hospital.

When applying for funding for equipment, you must show:

  • How children and young people will directly benefit as the main users
  • Why you need this equipment for your work
  • That you’ve considered longer-term issues like insurance, secure storage, durability and maintenance
  • How you have achieved best value for money
  • Why purchasing is more appropriate than hiring or borrowing
  • Who will have access when not being used to deliver work

Where specialist equipment is sought for an individual child or young person, we expect it to remain the property of the group rather than the individual. We may make an exception if item is bespoke or not reusable by others.

We do fund organisations that charge fees to attend their activities. However, we expect to see a clear statement or policy on fee-waiving. This should show that:

  • Those who cannot afford to pay fees are considered and cared for
  • Those that become unable to continue to pay fees are still supported
  • The wider community is aware that fees can be waived in certain circumstances
  • You are proactive in sharing your approach to fees and fee-waiving

We work to support organisations that improve outcomes for disadvantaged children. Ensuring that as few children as possible are excluded from activities is central to our decision-making.

Whilst we can fund food as part of a larger piece of work (i.e. lunches for attendees), we are unable to fund food packages for children and families. This includes food banks giving out food and other supplies. We can fund organisations for work related to food, but you must be able to demonstrate the difference that your organisation will make beyond feeding children and young people.

A governing document is a legal document that provides rules for how your organisation will operate. It should address:

  • What the organisation is set up to achieve (purposes)
  • How the organisation goes about achieving its purposes (powers)
  • How the organisation is managed
  • What happens if the organisation closes

It should also contain details on:

  • How often the governing board meets
  • How to appoint members of the governing board and how long they can act as members of the governing board
  • If and how trustees can be paid

(See also: Charity Registration)

We will only fund holidays, trips and outings that will clearly and effectively address the needs of children and young people involved. We will not fund holidays for families where there is little or no project involvement.

  • We may fund holidays and residential activities for up to three years, either as the main cost or as one part of your work
  • Organisations requesting this type of funding must be able to evidence their safeguarding policy and practices in regular use
  • Grantees for this type of work should be able to observe and track its outcomes
  • Direct access to, and established working relationships with, the children and young people is essential
    • We will not fund requests to send groups, including families, on trips where activity is not delivered by the grantee organisation
    • We will not give grants directly to residential centres wanting to secure funding for children and young people to attend their centres We only fund trips and holidays within the UK
    • We only fund trips and holidays within the UK. The one exception is for work in Northern Ireland, where trips or holidays to the Republic of Ireland may be considered

Due to wide statutory responsibilities in this area, we will only consider funding accommodation for homeless children or families in very exceptional cases.

We may support activities within accommodation centres that directly address the issues and needs of the children.

In certain cases, we may consider funding refuge accommodation for young people who have run away.

(See also: Statutory overlap, duplication, or substitution)

We do not fund statutory provision, including hospitals.

We will accept applications from organisations working in partnership with (or within) hospitals.

There must be a clear partnership agreement in place, which must include safeguarding.

(See also: Statutory overlap, duplication, or substitution)

We seek to prioritise smaller, local organisations.

We will rarely fund Project Costs for organisations with an annual turnover of more than £2million in the most recent, complete financial year. We will rarely fund Core Costs for organisations with an annual turnover of more than £1million.

We understand that some organisations with higher income deliver vital work for children and young people. We will accept applications from the following organisations regardless of turnover:

  • Hospices (including children’s hospices)
  • Housing Associations
  • Applications delivering work nationwide (across a whole nation) or UK-wide (across multiple nations within the UK)

We understand that, in some circumstances, larger and/or national organisations may be best-placed to deliver work to communities who need it most.

Because of this, we will accept applications from organisations with annual turnovers above the stated amounts. However, we will not prioritise those applicants if they are unable to evidence why they are best-placed to deliver the work.

We do not accept applications to our Project Costs or Core Costs funding streams from individual children or their families.

Our Emergency Essentials Programme awards grants for individual children and young people. It supports struggling families by funding specific items to meet children’s most basic needs.

Examples could include a bed to sleep in, a cooker to provide hot meals, or clothing in a crisis. We do not usually accept applications to provide welfare funds.

In exceptional circumstances, we may consider a case from an organisation targeting a wider audience. An example might be an organisation aiming to make starter packs for young homeless people.

We may also consider applications for a specific item to assist a child affected by illness. Those applications would need to be made by an eligible organisation that can answer questions about the child and their situation.

We do not consider full funding for posts that undertake casework attracting any legal aid.

If applying for such posts, please show any legal aid funding received in relation to the previous year’s casework.

For years two and three of such requests, you will need to state:

  • How much legal aid you will potentially receive
  • How much of a contribution to the post they are requesting from us

We will not consider applications from local government bodies. This includes councils at all levels.

We will not consider applications from statutory health bodies. This includes NHS primary or secondary care bodies, hospitals, Clinical Commissioning Groups, Health and Wellbeing Boards, and equivalents (e.g. Health and Social Care Trusts, NHS Boards and Health Trusts).

(See also: Statutory overlap, duplication, or substitution)

We will not fund medical aids or equipment where there is a statutory responsibility. This includes buying specialised medical equipment for a hospital.

We define mentoring or befriending as ‘a voluntary, mutually beneficial and purposeful relationship, in which an individual gives time to support another to enable them to make changes in their life’.

This must take place within a formal and structured arrangement. Sometimes, your work may include staff and volunteers giving more casual advice to children and young people. We do not define this as mentoring or befriending in a formal sense.

We expect all organisations applying for mentoring and befriending work to show:

  • A clear link between your aims and the benefit for individual clients/volunteers
  • A process for client referral/eligibility, based on equal opportunities best practice
  • A robust recruitment and selection process for volunteers
  • Solid processes for screening volunteers, and for safeguarding clients and volunteers, including
    • appropriate checks, references, risk assessments, training, insurance, confidentiality statements, and consent forms
    • initial training and preparation for volunteers, as well as ongoing support
  • A clear and consistent process for matching clients with volunteers, including
    • documented processes for monitoring the progress of relationships
    • arrangements in place for dealing with relationships that prove unsuitable

For more information refer to the NCVO Mentoring and Befriending Services.

If your organisation is recruiting a Volunteer Co-ordinator, you may be asked to provide a copy of the role description.

 

We may consider applications for minibuses.

However, these grants are rare, and you will need to provide a strong case for your need. Outcomes for children and cost-effectiveness will be especially important.

As a minimum, you will need to show:

• Why the organisation needs to own instead of hire a minibus
• How you expect to use the minibus, and how much of that use will be by disadvantaged children and young people
• How insurance, secure storage, running and maintenance costs will be paid
• That the vehicle will have the necessary accessibility for all potential users
• That all safety requirements (e.g. seat belts, fire extinguishers) comply with the law

We have a responsibility to ensure that BBC Children in Need funds are being used in the right way. Our Minimum Standards for grantmaking help us check that organisations are robust, ready to deliver work, and able to keep children and young people safe.

All organisations applying to BBC Children in Need must meet our Minimum Standards in order to be considered for funding. Please read the full list carefully before you consider making an application, and contact us if there is anything you are unsure of.

Our Minimum Standards cover three main areas: governance, finance, and safeguarding. We will ask each organisation to provide various key documents to help show that you meet them all.

Newer organisations should be able to clearly show that they:

  • Have the ability to plan and deliver the work they’re applying for
  • Will be able to make a positive difference to the lives of children and young people through the activities or services being delivered

In cases where full accounts for the past 12 months are not yet available, new organisations should submit a 12-month financial forecast with their application.

As a minimum, this forecast should include:

  • Projected income
  • Projected expenditure
  • Evidence of further planning/clarity around future income generation

National organisations provide services to the whole of England, Wales, Scotland, or Northern Ireland (or any combination of these).

We treat independent branches of national organisations as separate organisations. To qualify as independent, branches must:

  • Have their own constitution and financial accounts
  • Have their own management committee
  • Be fully responsible for their own finances

If the above criteria are met, we can accept applications from each branch as follows:

For Project Grants

  • UK-wide organisations can have one project grant in each of the four nations (England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales)
  • Within each nation our usual rules apply to local branches of a larger organisation

For Core Grants

  • Organisations may only hold one Core Costs grant at any time, regardless of where in the UK they deliver their work
  • The organisation cannot hold a Core grant if it has a Project grant in any of the Nations

Our Core (organisational) Costs funding can be spent on your organisation’s central day-to-day operations. These might include, for example:

  • Management and administration
  • HR and payroll
  • General office expenses
  • Accountancy and audit
  • Communications and outreach
  • Monitoring, evaluation, and learning
  • Governance, regulatory, and compliance costs

Click here to read about our Core (organisational) grant stream.

We can fund groups working in partnership. The nominated lead organisation must make the application, and will be accountable for:

  • Delivery of work as agreed
  • Safeguarding
  • Managing the grant and reporting back
  • Management of any workers funded as part of the grant
  • Ensuring that the work achieves its stated outcomes

Applications from partnerships must also meet our Minimum Standards for grantmaking.

A partnership agreement should be in place before you apply, and you’ll be asked to summarise this in your application.

(See also: Minimum Standards for grantmaking; Using other delivery partners)

If you pay members of your governing body for services outside of that role (e.g. as a consultant or a sessional member of staff), you must have:

  • A written agreement stating what that member can be paid to do, how often they can be paid, and how much
  • A conflict of interest policy showing how decisions on payments for an individual will be managed by the governing body

If you are a charity registered with the Charity Commission in England and Wales, the above must be in your organisation’s Governing Document (or in another document agreed by the Charity Commission).

If you are a charity registered in Scotland, you must meet the following conditions:

  • Nothing in your Governing Document says you cannot pay a member of your governing body
  • Less than half the total number of charity trustees are paid through the charity
  • A written agreement between the charity and the trustee states the maximum amount to be paid
  • The charity trustees have approved the agreement

If you are a charity registered in Northern Ireland, you must meet the following conditions:

  • Nothing in your Governing Document says you cannot pay a member of your governing body
  • Less than half the total number of charity trustees are paid through the charity
  • A written agreement between the charity and the trustee states the maximum amount to be paid
  • The charity trustees have approved the agreement
  • The trustee being paid must not take part in any decisions about the making of the agreement, the acceptability of the service provided, or setting the price

If you are a Community Interest Company (CIC), this must be clearly detailed in your governing document. This is one of our Minimum Standards for grantmaking.

Most playgroups and playschemes for children under the age of eight years must be registered, unless the law says they are not required to do so.

We will not fund the work of playgroups and playschemes that should be registered and are not.

For more information, please refer to:

 

Whilst we recognise that influencing social change is important, we do not fund party political activity, campaigning or direct lobbying.

We do not fund:

  • Pregnancy testing, advice, or information/counselling on pregnancy choices.
  • Sexual Health Education or Personal, Social and Health Education (PSHE) which is provided in schools or by statutory health services. However, we can consider applications to provide advice and information on sexual health which goes beyond the statutory provision, where a specific target group has been identified.

We do not fund statutory provision, including prisons.

We will accept applications from organisations working in partnership with (or within) prisons.

There must be a clear partnership agreement in place, including safeguarding responsibilities.

Our Project Costs funding stream supports the aims and delivery of a specific piece of work. This work will usually be time-limited, and based on a defined set of activities.

Project Costs are for charities and not-for-profit organisations. Applicants to this programme can apply for grants for up to three years. We aim to give quicker decisions for grants of £15,000 or less per year.

Please view our full Project Costs funding stream page for further details.

(See also: Core Costs)

Applications from organisations supporting children and young people with rare medical conditions must provide an external referee who is a medical practitioner.

This referee must:

  • Have experience of working with the condition
  • Have knowledge of the work of the organisation
  • Have knowledge of the specific work being applied for

As part of the application process, we may request an external reference to support the assessment.

Where a reference is sought, we will define who we would like to act as referee and the specific matters we wish the referee to comment on. Failure to provide a reference within the prescribed time scale may result in your application not progressing to decision making. Therefore, it is important that applicants make it clear to their referee that failure to respond may affect their chances of obtaining a grant.
Your referee must be someone who is external to your organisation. They should be someone who:

  • knows your organisation in a professional capacity
  •  does not work, volunteer or is a beneficiary of your organisation
  • has a good understanding of the work you are applying for, as we may ask them to discuss your application by email or on the phone.

We may consider applications from faith-based organisations, but we do not fund the promotion of religion.

This includes:

  • Any activity that involves converting someone to a religion (proselytising)
  • Any funding for staff whose job description and/or person specification requires a particular faith
  • Any funding for volunteer expenses or associated staff (e.g. Volunteer Co-ordinator) where the role description requires a particular faith

We may consider applications for work offering respite care to the family of a disabled child or young person.

As the core provision of respite care is a statutory responsibility, you will need to clearly show that the request cannot be met through statutory provision’.

(See also: Statutory overlap, duplication, or substitution)

We do not fund schools, academies, universities, pupil referral units (PRUs), or statutory educational establishments.

We will consider applications from:

  • Not-for-profit organisations that work within schools, or in partnership with them
  • Special Schools – these are provisions for children with learning difficulties or disabilities that cannot be met within a mainstream setting

If you are applying as a Special School (and are not a Registered Charity), you will still need to evidence that you meet our Minimum Standards for grantmaking. If we invite you to complete a full application, this will mean sending us a document which confirms your legal status and governance structure. At that stage you will also need to send us your accounts. We may contact you further during the application process to request additional evidence.

We expect work to take place before or after school, during lunch breaks, or in holiday time. Unless a very exceptional case can be made, we are unlikely to fund work:

  • Which takes place during school time
  • Requiring children or young people to be taken out of class to attend

We may consider funding school-time work if it supports children and young people who:

  • Are in ill health
  • Are in crisis, such there is a compelling reason for the child to miss lessons based on their needs
  • Find it impractical to attend activities outside of school hours, e.g. young carers

If you are delivering during school hours, you must demonstrate:

  • A clear rationale for why you are delivering during this time
  • That the timing is based on the specific needs of the children and young people

(See also: Statutory overlap, duplication, or substitution)

Applications for work with children and young people excluded from schools must show that:

  • Our funding does not substitute or overlap statutory funding (we expect this to follow the child)
  • The work will be additional to statutory responsibilities
  • The work provides a quality of experience that falls outside the requirements of statutory provision

(See also: Statutory overlap, duplication, or substitution)

We recognise the need to engage sessional staff for delivering specific forms of work or activity for children and young people. This might include short-term or one-off activities, e.g. holiday play schemes.

We believe that, where possible, it is more likely to produce good outcomes for children if organisations offer fixed-term contracts to cover these types of work.

BBC Children in Need believe that all Children and Young People should have access to the same opportunities; however, we also understand that sometimes, it can be beneficial to run projects which only allow a particular gender to engage at any given time, whether for religious, cultural, or practical reasons.

If you are applying for funding to support single-gender provision, we will expect you to clearly demonstrate the following:

  • There is a clear reason why this work is only being offered to a single gender.
  • Where appropriate/possible, alternative provision is offered for any excluded groups.
  • Activities are not divided based on assumptions of what each gender may or may not engage with.

We will consider applications from properly constituted and registered Social Enterprises, or Companies Limited by Guarantee, provided that:

  • The organisation is a CLG (Company Limited by Guarantee, as opposed to Company Limited by Shares)
  • The organisation is set up and registered as such with Companies House, and can provide a registration number
  • The organisation has three or more unrelated directors
  • The organisation’s Memorandum and Articles of Association contains an appropriate dissolution clause
    • This ensures that funds or assets can only be transferred to an organisation or cause with similar charitable aims
    • The organisation can clearly show that its work is focused on the needs and aspirations of children and young people
    • This should be over and above the business needs of the company
    • Applications should show how the work responds to an identified need, and takes the views of children and young people into account

(See also: Community Interest Companies (CICs))

We may consider applications for work that supports parents, or which offer training in parenting skills, as long as it will directly benefit the lives of children and young people.

Clear evidence of these outcomes will need to be provided.

We may consider applications for staff training that can clearly evidence a link to better outcomes for children and young people.

We will not fund training that is primarily to enhance an individual’s professional development.

Sometimes you may choose to use or work with another organisation or a person to deliver part of your work. This could be on a subcontracting basis; for example, bringing in a musician to deliver workshops as part of a youth group.

We recognise that this can be a reasonable and sensible approach to take. However, please note that all organisations applying for funding must:

  • Have a direct relationship with the children and young people taking part in the work
  • Take full responsibility for meeting Minimum Standards around finance, governance and safeguarding during delivery
  • Ensure that anyone subcontracted during funded work understands and follows your organisation’s policies and practices throughout

(See also: Partnership Work)

We want to fund organisations that have a strong governance record.

We will only consider applications for more than £15,000 per year from organisations that are registered with the appropriate regulatory body. These include the Charity Commission for England and Wales, the Charity Commission for Northern Ireland, and the Scottish Charity Register.

If you are a Company limited by Guarantee, you must have registered with Companies House.

We will consider applications from unregistered organisations for £15,000 or less per year.

(See also: Charity Registration)

Legally, you must only pay volunteer expenses for expenditure which has already been incurred. Examples might include refunding a bus ticket, or the cost of petrol, that has been paid for and receipted.

Expenses cannot be covered in the form of an allowance, or as part of a fixed fee for volunteering. This is typically viewed as pay, which is subject to National Insurance and tax.

For more information, please refer to NCVO Volunteering, Volunteering Wales, Volunteer Scotland, or Volunteer Now (Northern Ireland).

We consider applications from women’s refuges across the UK, however, there are certain differences between what we can fund between Northern Ireland, Scotland, and England and Wales.

Applications for refuge workers in England, Northern Ireland, and Wales must be able to demonstrate that the funding will support work which:

  • Goes beyond childcare, and makes meaningful impact in the lives of the children and young people involved.
  • Supports longer term interventions to address the trauma which children may have experienced, or break the cycle of abuse.
  • Is not, and would not, be funded by statutory sources.

In Scotland, we are unable to fund dedicated workers working directly with Children and Young People in refuges, as this is a statutory duty.

This applies to workers working either directly in a refuge, or within the community, on behalf of a refuge.

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