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BBC Children in Need small grants

Our Small Grants programme is open to charities and not-for-profit organisations applying for any amount up to and including £10,000 for one year only. Check the information below to see if your project should apply.

If you are looking for more than £10,000 please see Main Grants.

We give grants for…

Children and young people of 18 years and under experiencing disadvantage through:

  1. Illness, distress, abuse or neglect
  2. Any kind of disability
  3. Behavioural or psychological difficulties
  4. Living in poverty or situations of deprivation

We fund organisations working to combat this disadvantage and to make a real difference to children and young people’s lives.

In our Small Grants programme we are looking for projects where a relatively small amount of money can make a big difference for children and young people. We are unlikely to fund applications which top up funding for salaries or larger projects where a small grant would only make a marginal impact on its success.

Who can apply?

  • Not-for-profit organisations that work with disadvantaged children and young people of 18 years and under who live in the UK, the Isle of Man or the Channel Islands.
  • If you currently have a Small Grant you can apply for further Small Grant funding to keep running the same project or for a different project. You will need to be able to provide convincing evidence of the differences our grant has made to the lives of the disadvantaged children and young people you have worked with. Please note you can usually only have one application assessed in any 12-month period.
  • If you currently have a Main Grant you can also apply for a Small Grant as long as it is for work with a different group of children and young people. Please note you can usually only have one application assessed in any 12-month period.

We DON’T give grants…

  • For work which statutory bodies (such as schools or local authorities) have a duty to fund
  • To local government or NHS bodies
  • For building projects applying to us for more than £20,000
  • For projects which promote religion
  • To fund trips or projects abroad
  • For medical treatment or research
  • For pregnancy testing or advice, information or counselling on pregnancy choices
  • For awareness-raising work, except where it is targeted at those children or young people most at risk.
  • For bursaries, sponsored places, fees or equivalent
  • To individuals (unless an eligible organisation is applying on their behalf or through our Emergency Essentials Programme)
  • To be passed on to other organisations, for example, PTAs applying on behalf of schools
  • For general appeals or endowment funds
  • To help with budget shortfalls or debt repayments
  • To projects where the grant expenditure is due to start before the grant award date (retrospective funding)
  • To organisations which have applied in the last 12 months
  • To projects unable to start within 12 months of the grant award date
  • For unspecified expenditure
  • For organisational overheads or running costs which the organisation would incur whether the project was running or not. (Although we will consider funding support costs incurred as a direct result of running the project.)

It is very important that you refer to our online A To Z Guidance to make sure you don’t waste time applying for things we don’t fund. You will find valuable details on our policies here – some are relevant to every project (for example Child Protection) and some are important for certain types of project (for example counselling projects or projects seeking funding for equipment).

How to apply

  1. Plan your project carefully. You may find our guide to Planning Your Project useful before you complete your application. Poor planning is a common reason why applications are not successful.
  2. Read our A to Z Guidance to help make sure you only apply for things that we can fund.
  3. Use our online application system to complete an application form and submit additional information.
  • All organisation must include a copy of their most up-to-date financial information (normally accounts).
  • Please refer to our FAQs for advice on what other information you might need to provide.

The most common reason applications are unsuccessful is because not all the required extra information is included. If you have any questions about what you need to submit please contact us.

We don’t assess applications:

  • which are ineligible
  • which have information missing
  • with questions that are not answered

When to Apply

You should plan your application so that you will hear a decision in plenty of time before your project is due to start. We cannot fund projects that start before a decision is received.

Application Deadline When is the Decision Due?
1 March Early May
1 June Early August
1 September Early November
1 December Early March

What happens after we submit our Small Grant application?

After you submit your Small Grant application you will receive an email confirming that we have received it. This email will give you more information about what happens next.

We will do a basic check to see if you have submitted all the information we need, if your organisation is suitable for our funding, and if you have applied for a project which we are able to fund.

We will then contact you to arrange an interview, usually by telephone, to help us to better understand your project. You will need to be available in the month after the deadline for this interview.

A decision about whether or not to give you a grant will be made in your local region or nation. You will be informed of the decision by email. You can find detailed information on when you can expect to hear a decision in the email confirming that we received your application.

What happens next?

If your application is successful you will receive an email informing you of the decision. This email will give you more information on what happens next.

There may be some conditions on your grant: changes that need to be made or things you will have to tell us before we can award you the funds.

You will have to start spending the money within 12 months of the date of the email informing you of the decision.

You can find more information in the ‘I have a grant’ section.

If your application is unsuccessful, you will receive an email informing you of the decision. This email will give you brief reasons as to why your application was turned down and will indicate when you can next apply. You can also contact us if would like further feedback.

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