Application form hints and tips

Please remember that this is a competitive application process. Your application will be assessed against other applications with only the strongest applications chosen to receive a grant. After the first two round of applications, we’ve compiled the following tips:

  • Be clear and focused in setting out your case for funding. Tell us what you are going to do, why and how. In previous applications applicants provided information on national strategies, national statistics and frameworks but omitted clear details of what the funding would actually be used for and how it would help mitigate the impact of welfare reform, social inequalities and poverty
  • Sell the project/activities you are trying to fund – tells the what, the why and the how. Tell us how you came up with your idea
  • Be creative with your new idea – how is it unique?
  • Make your application as easy to read as possible. Use short paragraphs and an accessible font so that the decision making panel can give your application the attention it deserves. Do not be afraid to put things in simplistic terms – jargon often blurs what you’re trying to say.
  • Ask someone else to proofread your application before submitting it.
  • Be clear as to how your project/activities will mitigate the effects of welfare reform, combat poverty and social inequality, promote social inclusion and have a preventative impact in communities – give examples. Tell us how you will measure your outcomes and outputs
  • Demonstrate clearly the impact your project/activities will have on the community. Set out the need in the community and how you will meet that need. Don’t be afraid to be passionate about your cause!
  • Funders want to know there is value for money in the projects/activities they are investing in. Talk about the ongoing sustainability and impact of your project/activities on your audience and the community. Be sure to include the number and types of people who will benefit from your project and how.
  • Think about the timeframe – ensure that you will have enough time to deliver your project/ activities within the period of funding. If your project involves recruiting staff be mindful of the time this can take. If your project/activities involve input from partners make sure they know about it and are able to meet your timescales.

Below are some examples of content that you may find useful in helping you to tell us about your project/ideas/activities. These examples are merely illustrations. Remember there is no word limit on the applications form so make sure you tell us everything!

Example 1 – New project/services

What would you like us to fund?

We are seeking funding to pilot a new service in the Cumnock that will provide those in the community access to bespoke money management services. The need for this new service has come about as a result of feedback from the community, who at present, have to travel 30 miles to access the nearest service and often have to wait 2-3 weeks for an appointment. This community experiences high levels of unemployment, fuel poverty, high level of debts and recent DWP benefit changes have had a huge negative impact on an already fragile community. We propose to deliver money management services that will include credit checks; budgeting sessions; support with DWP claims. These services will be available to all in the community. We expect the delivery to be one-to-one and some group delivery, partnering with local groups to perhaps use their venues, however we plan to seek the opinions of clients in how best we can deliver the services to meet their needs.  These services will be available community wide.

What will the funding help you achieve?

By introducing this money management service we hope to:

  • Provide information and advice at an early stage to prevent crisis and support the development of a more financially aware community
  • Provide support and practical assistance to meet immediate needs
  • Increase financial awareness to enable people to take more control of their finances
  • Ensure that people are supported to access benefits and they are supported to navigate the complexities of DWP
  • Increase the awareness of DWP staff to the needs of the community
  • Establish long term partnerships with DWP and other local groups

We anticipate that 100 individuals will access this new service on a one –to-one basis and if delivery of group sessions is identified as viable we would aim for two sessions per month with approximately 10 participants each session. Depending on the situations that present during the life of this pilot project we could see very tangible outcomes such as debt restructuring, additional benefits accessed, credit union memberships – only time will tell. Beyond this project individuals will have the skills and support to prevent them from financial crisis in future.

Financial Information

The funding requested will be used to pay 2 additional staff members, production of materials to support the project e.g. hint & tips leaflets, training materials and incidental costs that could be required when delivering out-with our own premises. We anticipate that from the project start date until 31st March 2019 these costs will be XX and from 1st April 2019 the costs will be XX

Example 2 – Developing your organisation

What would you like us to fund?

We are looking to develop our volunteer workforce and are applying for funding to help us do this. The drop-in café we operate in Govan provides low cost, nutritional meals for all ages in the community and it serves as a hub whereby people can access support and information on benefits, fuel and energy, bill paying, support services on specific days provided by partner agencies e.g. CAB, Advocacy projects etc. We want to raise the knowledge level of our volunteers, who more often than not, are asked a wide range of questions by café users when our partner services are not available. This funding will be used to gather information on a range of support services, helplines, contacts etc. and loaded on to iPads that our volunteers can then access to support our service users. Our volunteers will be supported to source information, load the iPads and update information. This will be complemented by volunteers attending a range of knowledge sharing information sessions, we anticipate 6, with our partner agencies.

What will the funding help you achieve?

By investing in our volunteer workforce in this way we will be providing them with additional skills and knowledge to provide support within the community by acting as a point of signposting and in some cases a triage service. We will also be increasing the confidence and skill levels of volunteers who will be able to use this as a step towards employment. We will also be strengthening our relationships with other agencies and providing the platform for wider knowledge exchanges which will ensure volunteers and staff working to support members of our community in relation to welfare reform, social isolation, poverty and health issues are well informed and therefore better equipped to support people in the community and have a preventative effect. We will be setting in place something that can be added to and enhanced over time.

We will be able to support the development of approximately 40 volunteers over the period of funding which will allow us to have a pool of volunteers who can support our community in a range of ways and means going forward. The diversity of needs in the community may see us supporting individuals to access for example more benefits; negotiate debt repayment plans; accessing health support services. The relationships developed during this project will help sustain growth amongst partner organisations.

Financial Information

The funding will be used to purchase 3 iPads, pay volunteer expenses and costs associated with knowledge sharing and training events. Some costs will be used to increase the hours of our volunteer coordinator. Estimated cost up to 31st March 2019 is £x and the same from 1st April 2019.

Example 3 – Expand the capacity of your organisation

What would you like us to fund?

We are seeking funding to increase our ‘cooking on a budget’ service in the North Lanarkshire area due to an increase in demand from residents. We started this service last year and have seen a steady demand from people of all ages as welfare cuts continue to leave their mark. The cooking courses run over a 4 week period, with 2 sessions each week (10 people per session). Our sessions are open to all ages and we encourage young and old to learn together. Funding from the Community Capacity & Resilience fund would enable us to hire an additional sessional worker to increase the sessions to 4 per week. We started these courses to encourage the community to use fresh ingredients where possible and dispel the myth that ‘fast food’ was cheaper. Families in the community are often left with very little of their benefits once all bills etc. have been paid and what little money they have left does not go a long way when ‘fast food’ is the order of the day. We will also incorporate diet and nutrition information and look to produce recipe cards that people can take home with them and will seek input from NHS staff based in the local health centre to do this. We will also, at the end of each course, provide participants with ‘take-away ingredients’ so they can continue at home.

What will the funding help you achieve?

This funding will enable us to take steps towards helping people in the local community to eat healthier, maximise their spending in relation to food and increase their awareness of health and nutrition. During the funding period we will be able to provide 5 additional cooking courses. Each course is run over 4 weeks with 2 sessions each week and 10 participants on each course. We will get feedback from all participants at the end of the courses to determine the immediate impact the sessions have had. By providing this foundation we are confident that the impact will be longer term and post this funding we will look at perhaps training volunteers to deliver future sessions to build on the momentum.

Financial Information

The funding will pay the salary costs including employer’s national insurance contributions for one additional staff member. We will also purchase ingredients and utensils and pay for participant travel costs. Estimated cost up to 31st March 2019 is £x and for 1st April 2019 onwards £x

Page last modified on 25th July 2019