Member Grants enable Members to provide grants to a wide variety of community and voluntary organisations within Charnwood to further the Council’s aims and actively assist the community to enjoy a better quality of life.

Each Borough Councillor has been allocated a budget of £500 which can be used to support projects that bring benefits to their ward.

The recommendation on how to allocate their grants budget is the responsibility of each individual Councillor.

Find out the details of the appropriate councillor you may need to apply to on the Council’s website. This guidance includes information on the following:

  • Organisation eligibility
  • Project eligibility
  • How much you can apply for
  • Funding Request
  • Conditions of the grant
  • Further information

Organisation eligibility

Organisations operating in Charnwood and working with local people may apply. They must:

  • Have a constitution / set of rules / articles of association
  • Have a group bank account with more than one signatory
  • Be 'not for profit'

Examples of eligible organisations include:

  • Community Groups
  • Charities
  • Uniformed Groups (e.g. Scouts / Guides / Cubs / Brownies)
  • Residents’ associations
  • PFA/PTA groups (if they can demonstrate a wide community benefit and not for national curricula activities / items)
  • Faith groups (if they can demonstrate a wide community benefit)

In addition, organisations must:

  • Be inclusive and allow access to, or use/participation by, the general public. Membership should not be refused on the grounds of gender, race, disability, sexual orientation, and occupation, religious, political or other beliefs. An organisation which supports individuals based on a protected characteristic should demonstrate they are inclusive on all other grounds
  • Be able to provide their two most recent bank statements
  • Be able to provide a safeguarding policy if working with children / adults at risk
  • Comply with the Prevent Duty requirements. The Counter Terrorism & Security Act 2015 places a duty on certain bodies to have ‘due regard to the need to prevent people from being drawn into terrorism’ in the exercise of their functions. (https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/prevent-duty-guidance)
  • Comply with Government guidance regarding Covid-19 https://www.gov.uk/coronavirus

The following organisations cannot apply for a Member Grant:

  • Private/commercial sector organisations.
  • Individuals
  • Political organisations
  • Statutory bodies including Town/Parish Councils
  • Schools/Universities (excluding PFA/PTA groups)

Project eligibility

The Council have identified a number of aims and objectives set out in the Council’s Corporate Plan. Applications should fulfil at least one of these aims:

  • Caring for the environment
  • Healthy Communities
  • A thriving economy

Examples of eligible projects include:

  • Covid-19 recovery costs e.g. PPE, screens, sanitiser, cleaning.
  • Provision of equipment e.g. IT equipment, craft materials, furniture
  • Funding towards costs of community events/activities – e.g. community fun day, tree planting day, grassroots sports clubs, trips, summer fete
  • Funding towards specific projects – e.g. school holiday youth project, playscheme, coffee morning, gardening group projects

Examples of ineligible include:

  • Funding towards running core costs – e.g. rent, utilities, ongoing salaries (project specific sessional worker costs can be funded)
  • Retrospective funding for projects which have already taken place or items purchased.
  • Any form of gambling (except small fundraising activities e.g. raffle, tombola etc.)
  • Projects which promote a religious belief or party-political activities
  • Exclusively religious activity.

Examples of Member grants awarded last year can be seen at www.charnwood.gov.uk/pages/member_grants.

Please ensure you have Landlord consent before submitting an application, for projects/activities taking place on their land, or for modifications to public spaces or facilities.  E.g. if your project will be taking place on land belonging to Leicestershire County Council, landlord consent will be needed and a formal arrangement will need to be in place for ongoing maintenance (if applicable).

Funding request

  • Councillors can spend their allocated amount of £500 on one project, divide it over two projects, and can combine it with other funding from another councillor.
  • You can apply to more than one councillor in your ward or councillors in other wards if your project supports communities in more than one ward.
  • The minimum you can apply for is £250 from each councillor, the maximum you can apply for is £500 from each councillor.
  • An organisation can submit more than one application in a financial year but the application must not relate to the same project/scheme previously funded by the same Member.
  • If the total project cost is more than you are applying for, please provide details of other sources of income, including grants, fundraising and membership subs etc, that will be used to cover the full project cost.

Application process

Organisations wishing to apply will need to complete an eligibility checklist,  application form and provide documentation to evidence eligibility. The process is as follows:

  1. Organisations must check they are eligible to apply and that their project is something that can be funded by completing the Eligibility Checklist found on the website.
  2. Organisations should make sure that the relevant councillor(s) still have funding available.  Details of spend to date can be found on our website: www.charnwood.gov.uk/pages/member_grants
  3. If funding is available organisations should discuss their project with their local councillor before applying. Councillor contact details can be found on our website: www.charnwood.gov.uk/councillors/all  
  4. All applications must be received by the Grants team by midnight on February 28, 2022.
  5. The councillor(s) will then make a decision to support the application either in full or partially or will reject the application.
  6. If the councillor you are applying to is a member of your organisation, or there is a conflict of interest, a decision may need to be made by the Cabinet Lead Member.  This may cause a delay in the communication of the decision, and the Grants Team will keep organisations updated as to when they can expect to receive a decision letter.
  7. Organisations will be notified of the outcome of the application within a maximum of 28 days from the date on which a complete application (including all required additional documentation) is received (except if the decision is to be made by the Cabinet Lead Member – see above). If an application is only partially approved or refused, then the reasons for this will be given to the applicant.
  8. The organisation will need to complete an application form and submit this, with all the required additional documentation, to the Grants team. If an organisation is applying to more than one councillor, they must state clearly on the application which ward councillors have been approached.
  9. The Grants team will check the eligibility of the organisation and review the application for completeness before sending the application to the relevant councillor/s.
  10. Grants awarded by individual Councillors will be published online on the Council website: www.charnwood.gov.uk/pages/member_grants
  11. The Grants team will arrange a payment to successful organisations. Grant payment terms will be on a grant by grant basis, depending on the nature of the organisation/project and level of grant awarded.  Payment may be made in stages, and copy invoices, or proof of project expenditure may be requested. 
  12. An End of Grant Report form will be sent out to all successful applicants, and this must be completed and sent back to the Grants team at the end of the project or financial year, along with copies of receipts/invoices, and photographs or feedback from the project if required. 

Conditions of the grant

The following conditions apply to all approved projects:

  • Any changes to the project or activity for which the funding was originally granted will require further approval.  If there are any changes the organisation should contact our Grants Team who will seek approval from relevant councillor(s).
  • The Charnwood Borough Council logo must be included on all publicity material relating to the project or activity. 
  • The grant must be spent by March 31, 2022.

Further information

If an organisation does not comply with the conditions attached to a grant or does not use it for the purposes for which it was awarded the Council may seek to reclaim some or the entire grant awarded.

For any queries regarding the Member Grants Scheme please contact the Grants team on telephone at 01509 634730, or email: membergrants@charnwood.gov.uk.

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Last updated: Thu 13th May, 2021 @ 13:58