Fewer than one in 10 proposals succeed in getting Reaching Communities grants

New guidance from the Big Lottery Fund says there will be £100m in the programme this year but demand is increasing

Demand for grants is increasing
Demand for grants is increasing

Organisations applying for a Reaching Communities grant from the Big Lottery Fund have a chance of success of less than 10 per cent.

The figure is contained in new application guidance published this month by the BLF in response to increased demand for funding.

Reaching Communities awards grants of between £10,000 and £500,000 for projects in deprived areas. Public and voluntary sector organisations can apply.

The guidance reveals that in 2010/11 the programme received 5,730 outline proposals asking for a total of more than £1bn. Of these, 1,322 were invited to apply formally and the programme made 500 grants, totalling just under £125m during the year.

A BLF spokeswoman said it had introduced a new applications procedure in 2010 to eliminate more bidders at the outline proposal stage.

She said the programme was planning to award grants totalling at least £100m in 2011/12.

"We are experiencing increased demand for our funding and we expect this to continue because of the changing and more challenging environment in which voluntary and community sector organisations operate," she said.

The guidance says the programme is likely to fund fewer large projects in the future. "We will only consider making grants of more than £300,000 if we think your project is an example of excellent practice," it says.

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