Example Charity Grant Making Policy Template

An example charity grant making policy template and process to create a funding application policy for charities, with Commission guidance links

Example Charity Grant Making Policy Template

A charity grant making policy is not a legal obligation and there’s no one ‘right way’ to do it, but this example grant making policy template for charities details the grant making process, making it quicker and simpler to create your own funding application policy. I've included links to Charity Commission grant making guidance at the end.


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Grant Making Policy - Purposes

This grant making policy lays out our aims and principles in awarding grants and also a range of specific checks.  Which will be applied to any given grant will depend on the nature of the grant application and will be decided on a case for case basis.

We can only fund projects and activities that are exclusively charitable and fall within the objects of the charity.

Grant Making Criteria & Priorities

Funding Criteria.  The charity will consider all applications that fall within our charitable purposes and meet our funding criteria and, for which, the due diligence process has not identified any unacceptable issues.

  • Charities - organisations must have a written constitution, with exclusively charitable aims, and be run by a minimum of at least 2 trustees.
    • In making grants, trustees will comply with Charity Commission guidance, to ensure that it is in the charity’s best interests, check that any money is used as it is expected it to be and the decision recorded in the minutes.
  • Governmental Agencies - support will only be considered where these is either no, or inadequate statutory provision.
  • Other Organisations - in the event that the trustees wished to support an organisation that isn’t a charity, they are aware of and would comply with the Charity Commission’s guidance on doing so.
    • In particular, they would ensure that the grant is only for to  further the charity’s purposes, any funding of support costs would be limited to the specified activities, services or outcomes, the grant agreement requires the above be complied with, there is no more than incidental personal benefit and the trustees can demonstrate that the decision is in the charity’s best interests.

Grants will be made based on the funding available and solely on merit.

Priorities.  The number of good applications is likely to exceed the funding available, so the trustees use the following criteria to help them in making decisions on how best to allocate funding.

  • Those most in need, particularly excluded groups such as the disabled community.
  • The most vulnerable, such as children and older people.
  • Families with children, particularly single parent families and orphans.
  • Where a small grant might enable a larger project to go ahead, such as meeting a shortfall in funding.
  • Any other priorities that the trustees may from time to time decide.

Submission of Grant Funding Applications

  • We require submissions to be made using our application form and these may not be considered, if the word count limits are exceeded.
    • However, you may include relevant supporting documents, such as a programme plan or budget.
  • Applications may be sent to us by post or as an e mail attachment.
  • Check your submission to ensure that you have included the following:
    • How you meet our funding criteria.
    • And our funding priorities.
    • Information on your organisation/individual.
    • Project/bid details, such as amounts, numbers, timetable.
    • Evidence of the need and impact the funding would have.

Safeguarding – if working with children or vulnerable adults, applications are to include details of the procedures used to ensure they are kept safe from harm and how management ensure these are applied consistently.  These must comply with the charity’s safeguarding policy and legislation, and any regulation specific to the activity.

Health & Safety at Work (H&SW) – the organisation has a robust H&SW framework and management oversight, with adequate policies that are consistently applied and training that is undertaken by everyone who needs to and is up-to-date.

Insurance - Details of insurances held, with a certified true copy of the insurance policy.

Property/Assets Created.  Confirmation that any assets, intellectual property or other material of financial value created will not be disposed of at any point, without confirmation that any proceeds will be used for an approved charitable purposes and the prior written permission of the trustees. In the event this is not forthcoming, the asset is to be disposed of in accordance with the trustees’ instructions.

Grant Making Policy - Reporting

All grantees will be required to provide a report on how their grant was used and the impact this has had.  The content and nature of information to be reported will be appropriate for the size and type of grant awarded.  The charity will monitor such reports to not only ensure that grants are being use for the purposes intended, but also to assess the impact grants have made.  This learning will be used to inform future decision making and policy to maximise the charity’s impact.

Grant Making - Management

Decision Making Process

Applications will be considered by out trustee board, who work to the Charity Commission C27 guidelines on trustee decision making.

Grants are awarded entirely at the discretion of the trustees and their decision is final.


All applicants will be notified of the outcome of their bid and successful applicants will have funding made available, once they have signed a grant agreement.

For organisational grants, we have a formal grant agreement.

For small grants and any to individuals, we advise applicants of their award and include their obligations in receiving it.

  • Confirming receipt;
  • It may only be spent for the purposes for which it was given.
  • Any unused portion of the grant is to be returned to the charity.
  • Reporting back on how the grant was spent;
  • Reporting back on the impact the grant had and;
  • Any supporting evidence required, such as receipts;
  • Including any deadline for doing so.

Data Protection

Applicants’ data will be held in accordance with data protection legislation.  It will be held securely, disclosed if subject to an access request, treated as confidential, only used for the purpose for which it has been provided and destroyed, once no longer needed.


In making grants to or working with other organisations we will comply with Charity Commission guidance by carrying out relevant due diligence and having a written agreement that sets out:

  • Our relationship.
  • The role of each organisation.
  • Monitoring and reporting arrangements.

Checks and Due Diligence

The charity will carry out sufficient due diligence on grant applicants to confirm the identity of the applicant and that.

  • Any funding will be applied in accordance with the charity’s charitable purposes.
  • Funds will not be knowingly used for illegal purposes, such as money laundering, bribery or financing terrorism.
  • The applicant does not hold views or have any involvement in activities contrary to the charity’s values and charitable purposes.

We have a robust, risk based Due Diligence procedure.


Often those we are trying to reach are the least able to be able to research and find us and to make effective applications.  Consequently, it is important to ensure that those we are seeking to reach are made aware and that the application process is kept as simple as possible.

Ways in which people can be made aware include promotion:

  • Via websites, such as funders, local community groups and foundations.
  • Social media – either groups relevant to our activity, or local town/village/community groups.
  • Posters in village/town, churches or mosques, doctors’ surgeries and shops.
  • Through networks of those who come into contact with potential beneficiaries, such as relevant statutory services and charities.

For some groups, we may provide information a different way, such as an additional language, or to make these accessible to people who have disabilities.


There doesn't seem to be a single source of Charity Commission grant making policy guidance, but here's what I've found.

  1. Grant Funding an Organisation That Isn’t A Charity.
  2. Work with other charities: making grants to other charities.
  3. Know your partner, key issues to think about.
  4. CC37: Charities and public service delivery.

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This Charity Grant Making Policy Doesn't Constitute Professional Opinion

I am not an accountant, nor a lawyer and no advice can be applicable to all organisations, in all circumstances, so this resource is no more than a guide to understanding.  I've summarised the regulatory guidance and augmented this with my own experience and Internet research to create a charity grant making policy template for you, but I am not competent to provide professional advice.  I have included links to the source guidance to enable you to check this yourself and, if you think you might need professional advice, use Help Finder to find pro bono support.

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