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Main Grants

We’ve updated our grant making processes

We have now launched our refreshed Main Grants Programme, making our processes quicker, simpler and clearer.

What is different?

  • All applicants for Main Grants must now register with us by submitting an Organisation Registration form.  To complete an Organisation Registration Form, please read our Organisation Registration Form Guidance.
  • You won’t have to complete the Registration process every time you apply to us. This is one of the key changes to save you time!
  • If your Registration is successful, we will then let you know when and how you can apply to us.
  • There is only one Project Application Form to complete – and we hope it is simpler and easier to use. We’ll be asking you for your feedback on this.
  • Once your organisation is Registered, we will send you a link to fill in a Main Grants Project Application Form. You can access this form through your online application portal. To complete a Project Application Form, please read our Project Application Form Guidance.
  • We are introducing National and Regional Plans during 2020 to help you understand where we will prioritise our funding decisions.
  • We will still have assessment calls but these will focus on three particular areas – the role of children in your project, planning and safeguarding.
  • We will be sharing our updated policy and eligibility information when we open for Registration. Please make sure you read this carefully before applying. If you are uncertain, please contact your local team.
  • Please make sure you have read our list of organisations/work we do not fund as this has changed.

Your organisation must register before applying to us for funding. It takes us up to three working weeks to process your registration. Please be aware that Organisation Registration Forms submitted after 20th December 2019 may not be processed in time to meet the first application deadline of 13th January 2020. We close our office between Christmas and New Year.

What if I already have a grant?

We have changed the process for organisations who want to continue their funding. You will still need to register with us. We will ask you to confirm that you are seeking continuation of your current grant. We’ll then be in touch about next steps. Our aim is to make sure that we keep your Registration status up-to-date throughout the lifetime of your grant. This means you won’t have to repeat the Registration process again in the future.

Key dates for continuation grants

  • Registering your organisation: Year round
  • We’ll contact you about what to do next from January 2020
  • First continuation decisions communicated by end of May 2020

We’ll have more details on this shortly.

Please make sure you have read our list of organisations/work we do not fund as this has changed.

Timeline

Registration will be open all year-round from the 1st November 2019, with cut-off dates for each application round. We expect the decision on Registration to take about three weeks.

Please be aware that Organisation Registration Forms submitted after 20th December 2019 may not be processed in time to meet the first application deadline of 13th January 2020.

Register from: Apply by: Decision by:
1st November 2019 13th January 2020 Mid-April 2020

We are finalising our Grant calendar for the rest of 2020. We expect to announce our second round of grant making decisions by the end of July 2020.

We will confirm the ongoing calendar in the spring of 2020.

What if I have any questions?

If you have any questions, please contact us on 0345 609 0015 or by emailing [email protected] and we’ll do our best to help. We want the process to work really well for you. As it’s new, we’ll be learning and improving as we go. Please let us know if you have any thoughts or suggestions.

Over £10,000 per year for up to three years

Our Main Grants programme is open to charities and not-for-profit organisations applying for grants over £10,000 per year for up to three years. Check the information below to see if your project should apply. But first – have you read about how, together, we improve children’s lives in the UK.

If you are looking to apply for any amount up to £10,000 per year, for up to three years, see Small Grants.

We give grants for:

Children and young people of 18 years and under experiencing disadvantage through:

  1. Illness, distress, abuse or neglect.
  2. Any kind of disability.
  3. Behavioural or psychological difficulties.
  4. Living in poverty or situations of deprivation.

Projects we fund make differences in children’s lives that help prevent or overcome the effects of the disadvantages they face. Projects achieve these differences by either working directly with children or seeking to improve their social and physical environments.

Who can apply?

  • Registered not-for-profit organisations that work with disadvantaged children and young people of 18 years and under who live in the UK, the Isle of Man or the Channel Islands.
  • Organisations who currently have a Main Grant, as long as your funding is coming to an end within the next 12 months. You can apply for further Main Grant funding to keep running the same project, or on a different project. You will need to be able to provide convincing evidence of the differences our grant has made to the lives of the disadvantaged children and young people you have worked with.

We don’t give grants:

  • To unregistered organisations
  • For work which statutory bodies (such as schools or local authorities) have a duty to fund.
  • To educational institutions including schools, universities, pupil referral units. The only exception is special schools. Please see our A–Z Guidance.
  • To organisations who have been active for less than three years.
  • To organisations with income over £2 million. (please see guidance for exceptions)
  • To local government, prisons or NHS bodies.
  • For capital or building projects
  • For projects which promote religion.
  • To fund trips or projects abroad.
  • For medical treatment or research.
  • For pregnancy testing or advice, information or counselling on pregnancy choices.
  • For awareness-raising work, except where it is targeted at those children or young people most at risk.
  • For bursaries, sponsored places, fees or equivalent.
  • For holidays where there is little or no project involvement.
  • For political activity or, to party political organisations or for direct lobbying.
  • To individuals
  • To be passed on to other organisations.
  • For general appeals or endowment funds.
  • To help with budget shortfalls or debt repayments.
  • To projects where the grant expenditure is due to start before the grant award date (retrospective funding).
  • To projects unable to start within 12 months of the grant award date.
  • For unspecified expenditure.
  • For organisational overheads or running costs which the organisation would incur whether the project was running or not. (Although we will consider funding support costs incurred as a direct result of running the project.)

It is very important that you refer to our online A – Z Guidance to make sure you don’t waste time applying for things we are unable to fund and to check you meet our minimum standards for grantmaking. You will find details on our policies here – some are relevant to every project (for example Safeguarding Children) and some are important for certain types of project (for example counselling projects or projects seeking funding for equipment).

How much to apply for?

  • Our Main Grants Programme is for grants over £10,000 per year to support projects for up to three years.
  • There is no upper limit for Main Grants but we make very few grants over £120,000 (or £40,000 per year) and most grants are for much less.
  • Each year we are asked for much more money than we are able to give. Requests for larger amounts are always more competitive.
  • If you wish to apply for a smaller amount our Small Grants Programme  may suit you better.

How to apply

  1. Plan your project carefully. You may find our guide to planning your project useful before you complete your application. Poor planning is a common reason why applications are not successful.
  2. Read our A to Z Guidance to help you make sure you only apply for things that we can fund.
  3. Read our minimum standards for grantmaking to help you assess whether your organisation is eligible. If you do not meet these we will be unable to progress your application.
  4. You need to register your organisation before you can complete a Main Grant Project Application Form. To complete an Organisation Registration form, please read our Organisation Registration Form Guidance.
  5. Once you submit your Organisation Registration Form we will assess it to make sure your organisation is eligible and it meets our minimum standards for grantmaking. We will aim to give you a decision within three weeks of your submission date.
  6. Once your organisation is Registered, we will send you a link to fill in a Main Grants Project Application Form. You can access this form through your online application portal. To complete a Project Application Form, please read our Project Application Form Guidance.

If you are coming to the end of your grant please speak to your local team. After you register your organisation we will be in touch with more details.  The most common reason applications are unsuccessful is because not all the required extra information is included. If you have any questions about what you need to submit please refer to our

We don’t assess applications:

When to apply

You should plan your application so that you will hear a decision in plenty of time before your project is due to start. We cannot fund work that takes place or costs that are incurred before a decision is received.We are finalising our Grant calendar for the rest of 2020. We expect to announce our second round of grant making decisions by the end of July 2020.

We usually make decisions on Main Grants within about 3 months of the application deadline date. Some applicants will hear much earlier if they have not been successful.

When planning your application you should consider that, if successful, you must start spending the grant within 12 months of hearing the decision.

If you currently have a Main Grant and wish to apply for further funding for the same project, or a different project, you should not apply until your grant is in its final year.

What happens after we submit our Main Grants Organisation Registration Form?

After you submit your Organisation Registration Form you will receive an email confirming that we have received it. This email will give you more information about what happens next.

  1. Once you submit your Organisation Registration Form we will assess it to make sure your organisation meets our eligibility criteria and minimum standards for grantmaking. We will aim to give you a decision within three weeks of your submission date.
  2. Once your organisation is registered, we will send you a link to fill in a Main Grants Project Application Form. You can access this form through your online application portal.
  3. If we do not register your organisation, we will be in touch to explain what happens next.
  4. It can take up to 3 weeks for us to process your Registration.

What happens after we submit our Main Grant Project Application Form?

If you are invited to submit a Project Application Form you will receive an email giving you a link to the form and advising you of the deadline for submitting that form. To complete a Project Application Form, please read our Project Application Form Guidance.

After you submit the form you will receive an email confirming that we have received it and giving you more information about what happens next.

When we receive your project application form, your local team will check that your project is eligible They will use a standardised process to decide which applications will progress to the next stage, considering amongst other things:

  • the volume of applications;
  • the budget available;
  • regional or national priorities

We will let you know the outcome of the decision via email.

If you are invited to assessment stage, an assessor will contact you to arrange a telephone call. The assessor will go through your project and your organisation’s safeguarding in more detail.

What happens after the assessment call?

Your application will be considered by our Grant Making Committee in your region or nation who will recommend to our trustees whether or not to give you a grant.

Our Board of Trustees will make the final decisions and you will be informed of the decision by email. You can find information on when you can expect to hear a decision in the email confirming that we received your project application.

What happens next?

If your application is successful you will receive an email informing you of the decision. This email will give you more information on what happens next.

There may be some conditions on your grant: changes that need to be made or things you will have to tell us before we can award you the funds.

You will have to start spending the money within 12 months of the date of the email informing you of the decision.

You can find more information in the ‘I have a grant’ section.

If your application is unsuccessful, you will receive an email informing you of the decision. This email will give you brief reasons as to why your application was turned down and will indicate when you can next apply. You can also contact us if would like further feedback.

 

Important information about applying for a grant

Contact the grants team

If you have a question relating to our Grant programmes, and the solution isn’t in our Grant guidance section, please contact us.

Log in or apply now

Looking to manage an existing Grant or ready to start the Grant application process?

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