Department of Health guidance stresses importance of grant funding

Navca's Kevin Curley says document issued to primary care trusts is 'a welcome early Christmas present'

The Department of Health has issued new guidance to primary care trusts stressing the importance of grant funding to charities.

The guidance, published on Wednesday, says it is a common misunderstanding that the move towards increased procurement and contracting means there is no longer a role for grants.

It says contracts "should not inappropriately replace grant funding" and grants are particularly appropriate for organisations that care for people with long-term conditions.

Kevin Curley, chief executive of local infrastructure group Navca, described the guidance as "a very welcome early Christmas present".

"I have argued strongly that grants are a key part of intelligent commissioning," he said. "A healthy local third sector needs a mix of funding that includes grants alongside contracts and donations. I am really encouraged that the Department of Health has listened to this argument and understood it.

"Local charities and community groups should make sure they get hold of a copy of this paper. It is a powerful tool we can use to challenge local commissioners who say they will not or cannot use grants."


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