Community Grants Programme
Neighbourhood Community Grants
Grants for neighbourhood areas
Neighbourhood Community Grants of up to £3,000 per application, are available to fund projects/ activities/ services to benefit communities in each of the four neighbourhood areas. Each Neighbourhood is awarded £20,000 per annum, which is reduced as Neighbourhood Community Grants are awarded throughout the financial year. Organisations will be able to submit one grant application from each funding stream per financial year if the application for each funding stream is for completely separate projects/activities/events, not just a repeat of the previous application and must meet the grant criteria to be considered for a grant.
Events can include:
- events in community halls to celebrate or raise awareness of important causes
- events to support community markets to take place or local businesses to thrive
Funding towards projects or activities can include:
- start up, 'pump-priming', developmental or piloting activities to see how they work
- one-off projects but they must be completed within 12 months of starting
- costs towards venue hire or equipment to run the activity
- costs towards staffing on the specific project applied for
This grant funding is to support local activity that engages communities in events, projects or activities that have to contribute to meeting one or more of the Council's Strategic Outcomes and Priorities to 2023, which are:
- Healthy, independent and resilient residents with effective support to those who need it most.
- A safe borough which celebrates our diverse and vibrant communities, with local priorities shaped through participatory democracy.
- A sustainable approach to new homes, development and infrastructure which benefits our communities, in a well maintained borough.
We welcome projects, events or activities that:
- focus on meeting the needs of marginalised or isolated people or communities
- focus on funding local initiatives provided for community benefit
- In addition, for Neighbourhood Community Grants we welcome applications that:
- contribute towards priorities:
- identified by the Neighbourhood
- which appear in the local Neighbourhood Community Plan
Who can apply
Eligible groups are:
- not-for-profit organisations
- voluntary or community sector organisations
- faith groups
The Officer or Neighbourhood Committee decision on all Community Grant applications is final. To apply the applicant needs to include the following:
Your written constitution or memorandum and articles or set of rules that establishes your group as a voluntary, community, faith or other not-for-profit organisation.
That you are a not-for-profit organisation and able to demonstrate how surpluses are reinvested (you can provide evidence of this in your constitution and annual accounts).
That your group has a management committee or board of trustees with at least three members (you can provide evidence of this in your constitution)
Your bank or building society account in the name of the group/ organisation (please provide a copy of your annual accounts).
That you do not have an ongoing deficit that the grant application could be used to fill (please provide a copy of your annual accounts).
That your group have at least two unrelated people to authorise cheques and make withdrawals (you can provide evidence of this in your constitution).
An accounting system such as annual accounts to record income and expenditure (please provide a copy of your annual accounts).
A budget breakdown form for the project/service you want to undertake
The organisation needs to have all of these aspects to apply. In the application form the group will also need to provide as much of the following as is possible:
- describe what the grant request will be used for
- show there is a need or demand for the suggested activity (if possible)
- show how the suggested activities contribute to meeting at least one of our Strategic Outcomes and/ or local neighbourhood community plan priorities identified (showing how the project or activity promotes community integration or inclusion and/ or focuses on reducing inequalities, closing the gap for disadvantaged, isolated people and/or groups will also be advantageous)
- show that the organisations is open to the whole community, no matter the gender, race, disability, religion, age, marital status or any other protected characteristic group.
- describe how the project, event or activities will continue once the funding has ended, or how any legacy from the project or activities will be passed on,if appropriate.
- have a significant proportion of beneficiaries resident in the Neighbourhood in which it submits its application if the group is submitting a Neighbourhood Community Grant application
- provide evidence of its fundraising/match funding plans as part of its application to ensure the best value for money possible for any Community Grant contribution
- demonstrate that these activities are additional and do not duplicate existing work
- demonstrate added value i.e. social and environmental considerations
- show how the group will engage and consult regularly with users or members in developing and monitoring events, activities or services to identifying the need for changes
The organisation will also have to commit:
- good practice in terms of equality legislation, health and safety, safeguarding (children and vulnerable adults) and promoting environmental good practice
- that it will collect and use performance management data to measure the event, activity or project's impact and to monitor and improve effective delivery
- that it has adequate financial information including a budget for the event, project or activities in the application
- a clear indication of the state of the organisation's reserves, including designated and restricted funds and the reason that they are designated or restricted
All applications will be brought to the next available Neighbourhood Committee meeting.
What the grants will not fund
Groups can't apply for the grant:
- on behalf of an individual or commercial organisation
- if it is a repeat application from the same organisation for the same or similar activities. However, we will consider repeat applications where the organisation can demonstrate that its activities deliver significant community benefit and can provide evidence of efforts to fundraise and/or apply for grants from elsewhere.
- for projects or activities whose primary purpose is to promote religion or belief. However, applications are welcomed from faith organisations to carry out work with the community that is not primarily of a religious nature and does not exclude people from other faiths, or those who have no faith
- if the application is related to a current planning application, licensing application or other application yet to be determined by the Council
- Applicants should be aware that funds will be accessible only once and projects should not have ongoing running costs for the council. If ongoing costs are likely, then permissions from the relevant service Director at the Council will be required, in writing. Applicants are encouraged to support project maintenance and to seek additional forms of funding, if necessary, e.g. through crowdfunding to match the amount.
Grants cannot be used to pay for:
- major building works
- a minibus or minibuses
- political activities
- teaching community languages
- activities that are part of normal day-to-day running (though not capacity building)
- activities that are normally undertaken by Statutory organisations
- organisational fundraising activities
- endowments (to provide a source of income)
- retrospective events/ activities
Notification of decision
The Council will let applicants know when their application will be considered by the relevant Committee and applicants will be able to attend the Committee meeting where their application will be determined. Applicants will be informed of the outcome within 10 working days of the meeting.
If the council offers your organisation a grant it will be conditional on you signing the offer letter and accepting our terms and conditions of the grant. If your application is unsuccessful the relevant Neighbourhood Manager or Council Officer may be able to provide you feedback, upon request, as to why it was unsuccessful.
Help and advice
If you are unsure of which grant funding to apply for due to the nature of your project, please get in touch with [email protected]