Here’s how it works. We have four main rounds of grant-giving each year. The deadline for applications (unless specified otherwise) is 5:00pm (1700 hours) as follows:

  • Friday 13th January 2017 (Round 4 2016-17)

Our grants programme is made up of a range of funds which help to address disadvantage and deprivation and build resilience in Sussex communities. We are particularly keen to support grassroots community groups and small-to-medium sized voluntary organisations.

The types of work we support includes:

  • Youth club activities
  • Lunch clubs for older people
  • Health and well-being initiatives
  • Community transport
  • Community gardens
  • Projects addressing homelessness
  • Community advice and support
  • Food banks
  • Projects addressing drug and alcohol misuse.

Your grant can cover costs such as:

  • Equipment and materials
  • Staffing
  • Training and skills development
  • Rent or hire
  • Marketing
  • Organisational development, eg. help with business planning or fundraising strategies
  • Volunteer expenses.

You can see more of the sort of work and projects we fund here.

Am I eligible to apply?

Most of our grants are awarded to not-for-profit organisations, working for the benefit of the people of Sussex, whose annual income does not exceed £1 million.

Your organisation does not have to be a charity but it does need to have:

  • its own bank account
  • a constitution or set of governing rules
  • accounts or records of expenditure
  • relevant policies (such as child protection, vulnerable adults, health and safety etc).

We can accept applications from social enterprises, CICs and Companies Limited by Guarantee, but you should read our guidance to ensure you comply with our rules.

Sussex Community Foundation does not support requests from or for:

  • Organisations or activities which don’t benefit communities in Sussex
  • Organisations that discriminate on the basis of race, religion, national origin, disability, age, or sexual orientation
  • Organisations where the service provided is used as a vehicle or means to promote religious beliefs
  • Political activities
  • Small contributions to major capital appeals or campaigns
  • Grants which will be used to make awards to a third party
  • Projects which only benefit animals
  • Organisations who have not returned monitoring from previous SCF awards
  • Retrospective funding for activities or projects that have already taken place.

How to apply

Please read the general guidance notes before applying.

Please note that generally you may only make one grant application per round and only be in receipt of one grant at a time. Please contact the Grants Team if you would like to discuss applying for an additional grant.

Application forms

In most cases, you do not need to specify which of our funds you want to apply for. Make an application on our general application form online and we will put your application to the funder we think is most likely to fund you. A sample application form is available here so you can see the information we need. If you are unable to apply online, please call our Grants Team on 01273 409440  or email our Grants Team for a copy of the application form.

Occasionally, a fund will have a separate application form. The funds in question for this Round are as follows and you can access application forms and further details a little further down this page:  East Brighton Trust and Westdene Fund

Using our online application form 

Access our online application form by following this link and follow the on-screen instructions. You can save and return to your application as many times as you like before you submit it. 

Our online form allows you to submit your supporting documents as electronic attachments at the same time as the application form. 

Once you have submitted the form, you will receive an acknowledgement of your application, together with a copy for your records.

Deadline for our current round

Round 4 2016/17  – deadline Friday 13 January 2017, 5pm

Three of the funds open this round have criteria outside our General Awards and/or a special application form. They are listed below.  A full list of funds open this round is available to download here

  • East Brighton Trust Fund – Grants up to £500 are available for charities and community groups in the East Brighton area. This fund has its own criteria and application form. You can apply online . Deadline Friday 13 January 2017.
  • Gatwick Foundation Fund – Grants of up to £10,000 are available to charities and community groups in Horsham, Mid Sussex, Crawley and Wealden districts with projects that help people to gain confidence and raise aspirations through training and development of new skills; address social isolation and disadvantage experienced by families, children and older people; help young people widen their horizons and aspirations. Deadline Friday 13 January 2017. Applications should be on our general application form online. More information here.

  • Westdene Fund – Grants to individual young people (16-25 years) in Sussex with outstanding musical talent. Grants of up to £800.  This fund has its own criteria and application form. Deadline Friday 13 January 2017.

For information on or to apply to the Shoreham Air Show Fund, please call our Programmes Manager, Laura Williams, on 01273 409440 or email Laura Williams.

Supporting documents

All applications received must be accompanied by copies of the required supporting documents (including signed copies of your constitution and accounts) by the relevant deadline.

Here is a checklist of the documents you will need to provide:

  • a signed copy of your latest annual accounts
  • a signed copy of your constitution or set of rules (if you are a CIC, please also supply your CIC 34 report). 
  • if applying for a grant to purchase equipment, please send copies of written estimates or catalogue pages
  • a photocopy of one bank statement from the last three months
  • the names and addresses of all management committee members, with cheque signatories identified.

Depending on the nature of the project or activity, we will need you to send us the following, where relevant:

  • child protection or vulnerable adult protection policy (if you are working with these groups)
  • health and safety policy
  • equal opportunities statement.

If you have made a recent application for a grant, you may not need to re-send your supporting documents. Please call to check or make a note of this on your application. We will contact you to confirm we have received your application and if we need any further information.

You should hear whether your application has been successful around 8 weeks after the deadline.

What happens once we receive your application?

Once the applications are received, they are assessed against our general criteria. We then present them to the various donors and fund panels for consideration. Our own Grants Panel then meets to consider all the applications and to allocate any further funds.  This process takes about eight weeks and we will let you know the outcome of your application very shortly afterwards.


When your project is finished you are asked to complete a SCF monitoring form.  We will send this to you but if you need a copy of the monitoring form you can download it here.  You can download copies of the monitoring form for Hastings & Rother Reducing Health Inequalities Fund R1 standard grants here (for those awarded grants in Round 1/2015),  R2 standard grants here (for those awarded grant in Round 2/2016) and all fasttrack grants here.

If you have any queries, please call the Grants Team on 01273 409440 or email us – we’ll be happy to help. 

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