Blue Spark Foundation

Grant Policy

Overriding principles

1. Subject to the requirements of BlueSpark’s constitution, the Trustees shall have absolute discretion as to the making of grants but shall have regard to the guidelines set out in this grant policy document.

Types of project

2. BlueSpark’s objective is to fund or part fund projects which aim to improve the education and development of children and young people by means of educational, cultural, sporting or other activities.

3. BlueSpark will provide funds for relatively small-scale projects which are for the public benefit and which otherwise might not happen or would only happen on a lesser scale.

4. Most projects which BlueSpark supports are likely to be initiated or undertaken by schools, community groups, clubs, societies or other organisations. However, individuals or groups of individuals may also apply for grants and BlueSpark may undertake or initiate projects in it’s own right.

5. In schools, the projects which BlueSpark supports may relate to intra or extra curricular activities.

6. BlueSpark may provide funds for physical assets (such as iPads, sports equipment, or lighting for stage productions) or for services or facilities (such as sports coaching or music or drama tuition) or simply for the provision of experiences (such as theatre visits). These examples are intended to be illustrative and not restrictive as to the funding which BlueSpark may provide to support projects.

7. The Trustees will give particular consideration to projects which the Trustees consider will help enhance the self-confidence, team working skills and future employability of children and young people.

Number of children/young people involved in a project

8. There are no preconditions for the making of a grant regarding the number of children or young people who may benefit from a particular project. A project may be particularly deserving of a grant on the basis of the number of children or young people that it will benefit. Equally, a grant may be appropriate for the benefit of a single child or young person especially if the impact of the project concerned is likely to be particularly significant for that individual.

Mix of projects

9. BlueSpark will seek to support a mix of projects rather than giving it’s support to a single type of project or to a small number of organisations.

Location of projects

10. Projects funded by BlueSpark must be in England. Ideally, each project should be within a reasonable distance of the home or workplace of one of the Trustees or (if applicable) the sponsoring Ambassador. This is to facilitate face-to-face dialogue between BlueSpark and those organising the project and to make the project “visible” to BlueSpark.

Financial criteria

11. BlueSpark will only support projects which in the opinion of the Trustees are feasible and properly costed.

12. Funding provided by BlueSpark for any particular project must be crucial to that project rather than marginally incremental to it’s funding.

13. In most cases grants will be made on a relatively small scale. Many grants will be under £2,000, most will be under £5,000 and only in a few cases will grants exceed £10,000.

Approval of grants

14. No grant will be made for any project unless an Application Form has been fully completed and submitted to the Trustees for consideration.

16. Each grant application considered by the Trustees will be reviewed against these grant policy guidelines. The Trustees will also take account of any other factors that they consider relevant in relation to a particular grant application.

16. If the Trustees are minded to approve a particular grant application, they may wish to meet with the person making the grant application to discuss the particular project

17. There is no presumption against BlueSpark making more than one grant to the same organization. However, grants will not be made to a single organisation on such a regular basis that they are effectively an income stream for that organization.

Additional factors for possible consideration

18. In considering a project for a grant, the Trustees may give that project additional credit if it has the potential to offer continuing benefits beyond it’s immediate benefits e.g. by enabling an activity stream to be established for a particular event or production (such as a sports event or drama production) but with the possibility that that activity stream may continue under its own steam once the initial activity has taken place.

19. If the project is intended to produce a physical asset which may be of use beyond the immediate objective of the project, the Trustees may give additional weight to that factor in considering the grant application.

Revision of guidelines

20. These guidelines may be revised by the Trustees from time to time.