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Applications to our 2021/2022 grants programme

As uncertainties about Covid 19 continue but life in some respects becomes more normal, the Trustees have decided to move away from offering only an emergency programme. Accordingly, and until further notice, applications can now be made to either of two funding streams (1) project funding and (2) Covid recovery, core/ongoing costs.

Full details are given here, and all applicants need to read them.


See also


Application requirements:
blind category

The Trust awards grants to UK registered or exempt charities whose work fulfils the criterion:

Care of blind people and the prevention and cure of blindness.

In a typical year the Trust is able to respond positively to around 1 in 3 eligible applications with around 19 charities supported with grants varying from 3,000 to 30,000. Charities which exist primarily for the care of blind and visually impaired people are most likely to succeed, but the Trustees will consider others (for instance those who care for people with multi-disabilities) where the projects are specifically aimed at the blind or partially-sighted element of their work.

In this field only, the Trustees will consider applications from charities whose work is abroad, but are only likely to support a maximum of two such charities each year.

We are not necessarily looking for glossy professional bids and understand that your application will vary according to the size of organisation and the project. The following lists the areas that must be covered – if you fail to do so we will not consider your application:

  1. Organisation overview

    1.1 Name and contact details including:

    • Name, address, charity number (state if exempt from requirement to register);
    • name of main contact, telephone and email.
    1.2 Background and overview to include:

    • a very short history of the charity, when it was founded and why for instance;
    • overarching aims and objectives;
    • if part of a larger national, regional or international organisation, please provide details;
    • numbers and relevant information about clients/beneficiaries (this might include geographic location, age group etc); and
    • numbers of staff; and volunteers (and an indication of the areas in which they help).
  2. Project description

    2.1 Explain what you want a grant for/towards including:

    • why it is necessary;
    • who will benefit and how;
    • how you will deliver it.
    2.2  Give the total cost and:

    • include a breakdown of the main items of expenditure, including the VAT position (explain if reclaimable or not);
    • tell us how you intend to raise the funding and how much raised so far; and
    • if you have other applications outstanding, tell us how many and for how much.
  3. Contingency plan. Explain what you intend to do if you fail to raise all the funds.
  4. Timetable. Tell us your timescale for raising funds and when you aim to start and complete the project.
  5. Annual accounts. You must include your latest audited accounts and annual review (if you have one). If your financial reserves are not clear in the accounts, please provide further details. If your reserves are greatly under or over policy we would like to know why.
  6. Other information. Please include any other information which you feel will assist us in judging your application. This could include for example a copy of your newsletter, or short promotional/ advertising leaflets.

If you wish to talk through a potential application then please contact us in the Grants Office either by email or by telephone on 020 8941 0450. It is only manned part time so email is sometimes quicker.


Examples of previous grants

3,000 was awarded to a small charity to complete the funding needed to provide independent living courses for the first time.

A local blind society was awarded 20,000 towards the 147,000 cost of converting shop premises into a Support and Resource Drop-in centre.

3,000 was awarded to a county blind society to complete the funding needed for the purchase and installation of a new server for its offices.

A grant of 9,000 was awarded to a county association towards the recruitment, set-up, equipment and initial salary cost of a new volunteer co-ordinator.

A pan-disability charity was awarded 19,500 to fund the purchase of software and equipment specifically for its visually impaired beneficiaries.

A national charity which supports people who are deafblind was given a grant of 25,000 towards a 1.7m capital appeal to build a new Learning & Development Centre.

A national charity which supports people who are blind/VI with multiple disabilities was given 22,500 to fund a specialist publication about eye care for people with learning disabilities.

A UK registered charity was given a 20,000 donation towards its work programme treating people with cataracts and refractive error in rural Ethiopia.

Applications should be submitted from November and by 31 January at the latest.

Please try and get your application to us before the final deadline, as large numbers received on or just before 31 January may mean that these applications do not get our fullest attention.