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Grant Guidance

Starting your grant

If you have been awarded a grant from BBC Children in Need – well done! Every year we receive far more applications than we can fund, so you have done well to get this far.

This page contains lots of useful information about starting and managing your grant. Scroll down for advice on the following topics:

  • Keep your important documents safe.
  • Access your grant payments.
  • Discussing your project with BBC Children in Need.
  • Employing project workers.
  • Making changes to your project.
  • Measuring the difference you make.
  • Your Difference training.

Keep your important documents

You will have received an email telling you your application has been successful. This email contains the following:

  • Grant offer letter.
  • Grant Award Sheet: this details the amount of money you have been awarded, what you can spend the money on, and any conditions you have to meet.
  • Grant Acceptance Agreement.
  • Terms & Conditions (Small Grants and Main Grants) of your grant.

It’s very important that you keep copies of these documents as they form the basis for your grant and outline the work you are expected to deliver, what you may spend the funds on, and our expectations of you. You may need to refer to these documents throughout your grant.

It’s also important to keep good records after your grant has started. You will need to be able to provide evidence of:

  • The number of children and young people you have worked with.
  • The difference you have made to those children.
  • Expenditure on staffing costs, such as payroll records or invoices from sessional staff.
  • HR and employment records.
  • Receipts for any items you have spent £250 or more on.

Access your grant payments

In order to receive your grant you will need to send us the following documents:

  • Grant Acceptance Agreement: this confirms that you accept the grant according to the terms and conditions detailed in the offer letter, Grant Award Sheet and Terms & Conditions. It must be signed by your organisation’s Chair or Treasurer or Secretary or, for organisations with a turnover of more than £10 million per year, the Finance Director.
  • Proof of your bank account. We cannot pay any grant monies until we have this proof. We accept any of the following:
  • Original bank statement (please note we cannot accept print-outs from online banking or photocopies of original statements; you must request an original copy from your bank).

OR

  • Original paying-in slip.

OR

  • Original letter on your bank’s headed paper, stating the account name, account number and sort code, and signed by an appropriate employee of the bank (you can request this from your bank; see an example of a bank confirmation letter).

Please note we cannot return original documents; you can request extra copies from your bank.

  • Check your Grant Award Sheet for any additional conditions you may have to meet. In many cases you will have to provide evidence that you have met these before we can pay you any of your grant; in other cases we may pay a portion of your grant initially but will withhold further payments until conditions have been met. This will be clearly set out in your Grant Award Sheet.

Discussing your project with BBC Children in Need

You may receive a call or email from your grant officer at the start of your grant to discuss your project.

You can contact your grant officer at any time in the life of your grant to discuss your project. It’s particularly important to do this if you are making changes to your project.

Lots of projects will receive a visit from their grant officer at some point during the life of the project.

You might also be asked to host a visit by other BBC Children in Need staff or our supporters who are interested in the story of your project and the children or young people you support. If you don’t think this is appropriate, please say so.

Employing project workers

Many of the grants we fund are for the salaries of project workers. We need the following documents at the start of these grants:

  • If the job description and/or person specification has changed since you applied for your grant, you must send us a final copy.
  • A letter confirming the employee’s: Name; Job title; Salary; Start date.
  • This letter must be signed by your organisation’s Chair orTreasurer or Secretary or, for organisations with a turnover of more than £10 million per year, the Finance Director.
  • If this is a new post it must be advertised externally. You must provide a copy of the job advert. We will accept photocopies of printed adverts (e.g. in newspapers) or screenshots of online adverts. The advert should state ‘This post is supported by BBC Children in Need’. If you would like to use our logo you can find guidelines here.

You must submit a staffing costs summary for each worker at the end of each year of your grant to show us how the grant has been spent.

If you would like advice or guidance on recruitment or other HR issues, the ACAS website provides lots of useful information.

Making changes to your project

You must inform your grant officer of any changes to your project; wherever possible you must do this before those changes take place. In most cases we are able to agree to changes quickly and easily.

Changes you should inform us about could include:

  • Change of staff working on the project.
  • Changing the activities or services provided. For example, a school holiday club running daily activities in the local area might wish to make the following changes:
  • Instead of going to the swimming pool one day, they decide to go to the bowling alley – they would not need to discuss this with their grant officer.
  • Instead of the usual daily activities, they decide that one week they will take the young people on a residential holiday – they would definitely need to discuss this with their grant officer first.
  • Change of budget (e.g. if you want to spend some of the grant money differently, or if you are likely to have an underspend).
  • Changing what you report back to us about (the difference you make)

If you are unsure who your grant officer is, try contacting your local BBC Children in Need office or our helpdesk.

Measuring the difference you make

It’s important to start measuring the difference you make as early as possible in your grant. Have a look at our guidance on reporting on your grant.

Your Difference training

Your Difference training is offered to many of our grantees as a condition of their grant. It is a one-day training course run by BBC Children in Need and Charities Evaluation Services. The course introduces funded projects to BBC Children in Need’s reporting system and supports them in measuring and demonstrating the differences their project is making to the lives of the children and young people they work with.

Working with Children

Children and young people are at the centre of the work of BBC Children in Need and we believe that 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, by a commitment to practice which protects them.

BBC Children in Need is not and cannot be expert in child protection but we work alongside the NSPCC and other leading organisations to promote best practice in safeguarding children and young people. Good child protection and safeguarding is achieved through establishing a positive organisational culture and a number of complementary procedures and checks.

For more information, please refer to NSPCC’s Online Safety resources, Thinkuknow (An online education programme dedicated to protecting children and young people, run by CEOP, the Child Exploitation and Online Protection Command). You can also find resources to help children self-manage their digital lives on BBC Own It.

Reporting

We awarded you a grant because we believe that the activities or services you provide will improve the lives of the disadvantaged children and young people you work with. We believe this will contribute to our ambitions for every child in the UK to:

  • Be safe.
  • Be happy and secure.
  • Have a chance to reach their potential.

We are interested in learning from all our funded projects about the difference they make. We ask you to measure and evaluate your project and report back to us every year.

In your report we’d like you to tell us about:

  • The activities and services you provided, when they happened, how often and for how long.
  • The numbers and ages of the disadvantaged children and young people you worked with, and the type of disadvantage they experience.
  • The three most important differences (outcomes) your project is making to children’s lives.
  • Any other differences (outcomes) you have seen the children experience, in order to give us a full picture of your project.
  • A case study to tell us the story of an individual child, to help really bring your project to life (this should be anonymous).
  • How you spent the money you were awarded. You may be asked to provide evidence including receipts or invoices for any items over £250. If the grant funds any staff (full-time, part-time or sessional workers) you must submit a staffing costs summary for each one.
  • What you have learnt – (projects should always be looking to learn and improve).

In order to measure, evaluate and report on your project it is important that you keep records and notes and have regular discussions about your project. You should plan to collect information about the differences you are making (your outcomes) routinely from the start of your project. This will allow you to learn and develop your project to improve the differences you make. It will help you to explain to your participants, staff and supporters how successful your project is, as well as enabling you to complete your end of year grant reports and strengthen future applications for funding from many sources.

Please read our full guidance on reporting to BBC Children in Need, including support with setting your outcomes and self evaluation, as well as FAQs and an example report form.

Small Grants Reporting Guidance

Main Grants Reporting Guidance

Publicity for BBC Children in Need Grant Recipients

BBC Children in Need are proud to be supporting your organisation. As a newly awarded project you may wish to announce your funding award to local media, and on social media platforms such as Facebook and Twitter.

This is a great way to raise awareness of your project and the difference you are making to young lives in your local community. It’s also a way to show the public where the money they raise goes, and the impact it makes across the UK.

Using our helpful hints and press release template, you will have the tools to spread the word and announce your BBC Children in Need Grant. This template will allow you to input information on your project before you reach out to press contacts.

Acknowledge the charity

• Please always use our full title: BBC Children in Need.

• Use the correct logo! Please note, a logo agreement must be signed in advance of usage, ask your Grants Officer for more details if you have not yet signed a logo agreement.

Local press

• Using our template press release, simply fill in the details of your funding award, and share it with the BBC Children in Need press team for sign off: [email protected].

• Identify which media titles to share the release with; you can always phone the news desk to ask whether the story would be of interest, and who the best person would be to share the release with.

• Use photography to bring your project to life! If you have images which have full permissions in place and consent has been secured for all parties featured in the images, share them with journalists alongside the press release.

• Once you have everything ready and signed off, you can start emailing your local press contacts.

• Don’t forget to add in Notes to Editors. Note to Editors follows after the body of the press release. The list provides additional and background information to aid in understanding the story. The press release copy before the notes to editors must be stand alone and understandable but the copy in ‘notes to editors’ might provide broader information and context. Examples of information for notes to editors include a short description of the organisation (called the ‘boilerplate’) and its website link.

Twitter

Shout to your followers about your new grant; follow us on twitter and include us in your tweet @BBCCiN. Where possible we will aim to retweet your celebratory tweet to our own followers.

You can also use our hashtag #CiN

Find us on Twitter here.

Facebook

Tell your Facebook supporters about your new grant and tag BBC Children in Need into the message by typing @BBCCiN (it should automatically suggest us if you’ve already liked our page).

Find us on Facebook here.

Remember that every time you upload or use an image you need to get the right permissions and consent from all parties.

Any Problems?

If you have any questions please contact us by email: [email protected].

If you have any specific questions relating to press outreach, or wish to share a press release for sign off, please email: [email protected].

How are you doing?

How to tell if you are making a difference. A basic guide for voluntary organisations.

Log in or apply now

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

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