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Our application process

The process for applying for support from the Foundation is in two parts: the outline proposal stage and the full application stage.


Stage one – outline proposal, via online application form

  1. Please ensure that you have read all of the guidance on this site first – in particular the overview of the  programme, the ‘What we will/won’t fund’ page and the timetable.
  2. Then complete the online application form. This asks you some factual information about your organisation and some basic details about your proposed project. It then allows you to provide a more detailed description of your proposal, using no more than about 6,500 characters (including spaces and hard returns); this is roughly equivalent to two sizes of A4, typed in Times New Roman font point size 12.
  3. This is your one opportunity to describe who you are, what you want to do, and why. You must ensure that you make it clear how the proposed work would make a contribution towards the aim of our current funding programme (i.e. building a more resilient, fairer and sustainable economic system), with reference to one of our desired outcomes for the programme: either ‘systems change’ or ‘local economic resilience’. Hover cursor here for brief details of the Programme Outcomes…
  4. We do not ask you to register with the site, so unfortunately if – for whatever reason – you exit the application form before submitting it, your data will be disappear and there will be no way of retrieving it. You might therefore find it useful to compose the text for some of the larger sections in another application, such as Microsoft Word, and save it first, pasting it across only when it’s ready; this would also allow you to check the spelling, count the number of characters used (to help ensure that you do not exceed the maximum allowed in the form), and save a copy of the text. Please do not attempt to use formatting features such as tabs, emboldening and underlining as these will disappear when the text is pasted into the form.
  5. Should you have difficulty in completing the form, please contact us. We may also be able to accept applications in other formats if you have special communication needs.
  6. You may wish to keep a copy of your application, e.g. via a screen print, before pressing ‘Submit’, as there is no facility to print the application data beyond this point.
  7. On pressing the ‘Submit application’ button, the website will perform automatic checks on completeness. If your application form fails these initial checks, you will receive an on-screen message to tell you which pieces of information are missing and you will then have an opportunity to enter them. If it passes the checks, you will receive a ‘thank you’ message on screen that confirms that your application has been sent to us electronically. (If you do not see this there may have been a problem with your submission, so please contact us straightaway.) You will also receive an automated email confirming submission; please check in your ‘spam’ box if you do not see it straightaway.
  8. We will then add the data to our grant-making system, check it and send you a personalised acknowledgement email – which we aim to do within 10 working days. The email will indicate the timescale within which you may expect to get a decision on your proposal. If we have any difficulties processing the data we will, of course, get in touch with you. However, due to the high number of applications we receive, we do not have the resources to request further information in respect of outline proposals that are unclear or contain insufficient detail.
  9. After due consideration your outline proposal will either be declined stage or you will be invited by our Trustees to submit a full application*.
  10. During this process outline proposals are  judged on:
    • fit with the aim of the Foundation’s funding programme, in terms of contributing to a more resilient, fairer and sustainable economic system
    • strength of the applicant’s analysis of the current problems and the feasibility of their methods to tackle them
    • the nature and extent of the proposed project outcomes, including how strongly they meet one of our two funding programme outcomes (i.e. ‘Systems change’ or ‘Local economic resilience’)
    • potential strategic impact of the work
    • value for money that funding the proposal would represent
    • the level and nature of any risks that might be involved.

Stage two – full application

Full applications are by invitation only, at the discretion of Trustees*. This stage involves the submission of a more detailed proposal, up to six pages long, and a short assessment interview with one of our members of staff. Trustees will then decide at their next quarterly meeting whether they wish to fund the project and, if so, at what level.


* Although funding decisions are at the absolute discretion of our Trustees, the Foundation is committed to a policy of equality of opportunity and fairness towards all applicants. Please see our Equal Opportunities and Diversity Policy for further details. Please also note that we have a Conflicts of Interest Policy in relation to grant applications that Trustees have a connection with, including – but not limited to – those that they may have a pecuniary interest in.

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