Our awards policies
The charity makes grants to selected charities, only, within its field in Hampshire, the Isle of Wight, Kent, Surrey and Sussex. A list of the charities we currently support appears below.
We are not currently accepting funding applications but if, exceptionally, they are invited, they should be sent as set out below.
Please see our News page regarding our future awards plans.
The trustees’ policy is to make grants for equipment and projects, including training courses, to selected registered charities supporting children and young people with special needs in Hampshire, the Isle of Wight, Kent, Surrey and Sussex. We particularly support charitable schools, but also other charities.
The charities we support are:
- Autism Sussex – enabling those with an autistic spectrum condition to receive the help and specialist support they and their families need
- Chailey Heritage, East Sussex – providing education, care and transition services to children and young people with complex physical disabilities and health needs
- Chestnut Tree House, Arundel, West Sussex – children’s hospice, providing specialist care and support to children and young people with life-shortening conditions, and their families
- The Children’s Trust, Tadworth, Surrey – providing rehabilitation, education, therapy and care to support children and families in recovering from serious illness or accident, particularly affecting the brain
- Helen Arkell Dyslexia Centre, Farnham, Surrey – identifying and assessing dyslexia, delivering specialist tuition and facilitating expertise
- Little Gate Farm, near Rye, East Sussex – helping adults and children with learning difficulties to develop skills, confidence and independence
- Muntham House School, near Horsham, West Sussex – providing a safe, happy and caring environment for children with a range of special needs including Asperger’s, attention deficit disorder, autism and eating disorders
- Step by Step School, Sharpethorne, East Sussex – educating autistic children with severe social and communication difficulties and moderate to severe learning difficulties
- St John’s School and College, Brighton and Seaford – educating children and young people with a range of special needs including Asperger’s syndrome, autism, Downs syndrome and severe communication difficulties
In addition to limiting funding to the charities listed above, as part of its standing policies the trust does not support:
- parents’ or friends’ associations, fund-raising intermediaries, grant-making trusts or similar
- individual children or their parents
- projects which are not of direct, bona-fide educational benefit to children or young people with special needs in the counties listed above
Usually we prefer to cover the cost of specific items or small projects rather than make round sum contributions to wider costs. The trustees aim to award initial grants of £3,000, developing a working relationship with each charity and monitoring progress with a view to similar grants in subsequent years in order to assist with financial stability. A previous focus on dyslexia and certain other conditions is no longer in place.
Examples of recent grants appear on the Achievements page.
Instructions for applicants (subject to change):
1. Supported charities are allocated a Downlands trustee for liaison and oversight purposes. This trustee will be our lead contact with the supported charity, and its main point of contact with us. S/he will be available to advise it on suitable projects and on timing and formulating bids.
2. Funding bids should be made on the then current application form. This will be sent to charities invited to bid. Applicants should make full use of their Downlands trustee during preparation of the bid, including sending him/her a robust draft ahead of formal submission.
3. In the interests of brevity and economy, please use the form as it stands and do not re-type, modify or expand it. Limit content to the space and pages made available.
4. Also for brevity, 2nd and later year bids need only give a brief update on previous ones, including any significant changes; full project details, unless a new project is offered, and organisation background will not be required.
5. The trustees will consider limited other papers only, if they support specific information cross-referred in the application form, such as price quotes for equipment. Do not submit other material, such as annual reports/accounts/reviews, OFSTED reports, appeal letters or general publicity information; they will not be considered.
6. Applications should be submitted both in hard copy and by email. Submit seven hard copies of the application and any supporting documents, preferably double-sided, plus one by email, to the addresses on the Contact page.
7. Bids will be accepted by invitation only. They should be received by the 10th of the month prior to their consideration, as notified.
8. Eligible applications will be acknowledged, successful ones being announced on this website and notified to applicants shortly after the trustees’ decision. Unsuccessful eligible applicants will be notified in due course. We will wish to visit a charity during our period of support.
After an award
Grants are agreed for the specific equipment or project applied for; if for any reason these do not go ahead, the beneficiary organisation is expected to advise us so that the award can be reconsidered.
We will wish to use reports and feedback from the beneficiary organisation and its related publicity material for our own Annual report, website and/or newsletter, and will expect reasonable co-operation in this regard.