Fundraising News: How we got the grant - Citizenship Foundation

Rachael Takens-Milne, development and external relations manager.

Why did you apply to the trust? Carnegie's young people grant stream aims to help them participate in projects that improve local communities. Our Youth Act project trains deprived 11 to 18-year-olds in London to develop skills to assist local anti-crime projects.

We are about to start the third year of our London pilot. The trust gave us £7,500 for each of the first two years.

What did the application process involve? We applied in December after a chat with a grants assessor at the trust who felt it might not want to fund the project again. We said renewed funding would allow us to develop a strategy to make the project sustainable and create a model fit for national expansion. A two-page form allowed us to express this and outline our expected outcomes in 50 words each - we put forward our main proposal in five further pages.

The assessors called us in January and February to ask for additional information about outcomes and clarification on some points. It was a very straightforward application, and we were told we had the grant in March.

Is part of the money for infrastructure or training? It is predominantly to cover staff costs, with 10 per cent for core costs such as rent, lighting and IT bills. Our training costs are covered by a grant of £114,000 we were awarded by Bridge House Trust in 2003.

Did you apply to other funders? We asked for £20,000 from Suffolk Council's grants programme, but failed because it said budgets had been cut. We asked Carnegie for £24,000 in total, so there is a £9,000 shortfall. We are looking for potential funders to cover this so we can add a young people's forum to our website and hire a professional writer to create materials that will help people use our lessons independently to run similar projects. Training currently happens once a week for six weeks, with ad hoc support. A further £10,000 would enable us to run residential training weekends in Cheshire.

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