Henry Smith Charity – County Grants


Grants are available to small not-for-profit organisations and registered charities for projects involved with health and social welfare in the counties of Gloucestershire, Hampshire, Kent, Leicestershire, Suffolk, Surrey, East Sussex and West Sussex.

Objectives of Fund

Grants are made for work with groups or communities under the following headings:

  • Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME).
  • Carers.
  • Community service.
  • Disability.
  • Domestic and sexual violence.
  • Drugs and alcohol/substance misuse.
  • Ex-service men and women.
  • Family services.
  • Healthcare.
  • Homelessness.
  • Lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender.
  • Mental health.
  • Older people.
  • Prisoners and ex-offenders.
  • Prostitution and trafficking.
  • Refugees and asylum seekers.
  • Young people.

Priority is given to work benefitting groups experiencing social and/or economic disadvantage (people with disabilities, for example) and to work that tackles problems in areas of high deprivation, by which is meant areas in the bottom third of the National Indices of Deprivation.

Value Notes

One-year grants of between £500 and £10,000 and grants of up to £20,000 spread over either two or three years are available.

Match Funding Restrictions

Match funding of at least 75% is required if the application is for part-funding of capital works, equipment of high value that forms part of a larger project. This funding should be raised before applying.

Who Can Apply

Not-for-profit organisations and UK registered charities based and working in Gloucestershire, Hampshire, Kent, Leicestershire, Suffolk, Surrey, East Sussex and West Sussex can apply.

The applicant’s annual income must be below £250,000, or if working county-wide, below £1 million.


The following are not eligible for funding:

  • General Appeals or letters requesting donations (full applications that follow our guidelines must be submitted).
  • Local authorities or work usually considered a statutory responsibility.
  • Schools, colleges or universities, except for special schools exclusively for pupils with disabilities or special educational needs. We will not fund the education of pupils, but will consider funding additional services or facilities.
  • We will not fund the following unless they are in an area of high deprivation:
    • Youth clubs
    • Uniformed groups such as Scouts and Guides
    • Community centres.
  • Counselling projects, except those that have a clearly defined client group and are in areas of high deprivation.
  • Pre-school projects, out of school hours play activities or holiday schemes, unless these are specifically for disabled children.
  • Community transport organisations or services.
  • Projects that promote religion.
  • Capital appeals for places of worship.
  • Organisations that do not provide direct services to clients (such as umbrella, second tier or grant-making organisations).
  • Organisations with liquid reserves (net current assets plus investments) covering more than 12 months’ expenditure are most unlikely to receive a grant unless they can make an exceptionally convincing case that they are in financial need.
  • Arts projects, unless able to evidence therapeutic or rehabilitative benefits to:
    • older people;
    • disabled people;
    • vulnerable groups;
    • prisoners, or
    • young people experiencing educational, social and economic disadvantage (such as young people in, or leaving, care).
  • Education projects, except those able to evidence practical and rehabilitative benefits to:
    • disabled people;
    • prisoners, or
    • young people experiencing educational, social and economic disadvantage.
  • Leisure, recreation or play activities, unless they:
    • are specifically for disabled people;
    • are able to evidence a significant rehabilitative benefit to people with mental health problems, or
    • significantly improve opportunities and maximise the potential of young people who experience educational, social and economic disadvantage.
  • One-off events (such as festivals, conferences, exhibitions and community events).
  • Projects that solely provide legal advice.
  • Running costs of Hospices.
  • Feasibility studies.
  • Professional associations, or training for professionals.
  • Organisations that do not have charitable aims (such as companies limited by shares and commercial companies).
  • Start up costs, organisations that do not yet have a track record of service delivery, or that have not yet produced accounts.
  • Individuals or organisations applying on their behalf.
  • Projects taking place or benefiting people outside the UK.
  • Overseas trips.
  • Residential holidays (except those that qualify under our Holiday Grants scheme).
  • Heritage or Environmental conservation projects.
  • Social research.
  • Campaigning or lobbying projects, or general awareness raising work.
  • Projects where the main focus is website development or maintenance.
  • IT equipment (unless related to a member of staff we are also being asked to fund).
  • Capital projects that are solely to meet the requirements of the Disability Discrimination Act.
  • Capital costs towards the purchase or adaptation of a vehicle.
  • Organisations that have applied unsuccessfully within the previous 12 months.
  • Pilot projects are not currently a high priority. Groups seeking funds for a pilot project should be aware that they must be able to provide strong evidence from other work that has already been delivered to support the case for funding. They must also provide clear evidence that there is a need to develop a pilot.
  • Work benefitting people who are not resident in the eight counties where this programme operates.

Eligible Expenditure

The grants can be used for revenue costs (running costs, salaries, project costs) and capital costs (one-off capital expenditure such as building refurbishment or equipment). Capital grants must be used within six months of award.

The Henry Smith Charity makes grants in the following categories with some examples of the type of work that will be funded:

Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) – Projects providing culturally appropriate services to Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic communities; including those that promote integration and access to mainstream services.

Carers -Projects providing advice and support; including respite services for carers and those cared for. Work can include educational opportunities for young carers.

Community Service -Projects providing support for communities in areas of high deprivation; including projects providing furniture recycling services, debt advice and community centres.

Disability -Projects providing rehabilitation, support services, training and advocacy for people who are disabled; this includes people with learning disabilities as well as physical disabilities.

Domestic and Sexual Violence – Projects providing advice, support and secure housing for families affected by domestic violence or sexual violence. Perpetrator programmes can be considered where organisations have secured, or are working towards, Respect accreditation. The Charity is particularly interested in services which can demonstrate their outcomes measurement such as data collected through the CAADA Insights programme.

Drugs & Alcohol/Substance Misuse – Projects supporting the rehabilitation of people affected by, or at risk of, drug and/or alcohol dependency, and projects supporting their families.

Ex-Service Men and Women – Projects providing services or residential care to ex-service men and women and their dependents.

Family Services -Projects providing support to families in areas of high deprivation.

Healthcare – Projects providing residential care, health care or outreach services, such as home care support. Services operated by the NHS will not normally be funded and nor will core medical staff. In the case of applications from Hospices, priority is given to requests for capital expenditure.

Homelessness – Projects providing advice, support and housing services for homeless people and those at risk of homelessness.

Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender – Projects providing advice, support and counselling for people who are Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual or Transgendered.

Mental Health – Projects providing advice and support services for people experiencing mental health problems, and projects that promote positive mental health.

Older People – Projects providing residential care, health care or emotional support, such as befriending services and day care centres. Priority will be given to projects in areas of high deprivation and those where rural isolation can be demonstrated.

Prisoners and Ex-offenders – Projects that help the rehabilitation and resettlement of prisoners and/or ex-offenders; including education and training that improve employability, and projects that support prisoners’ families.

Prostitution & Trafficking – Projects that provide advice and support to sex industry workers; including advice on housing support and personal health, escaping exploitation and exiting prostitution.

Refugees & Asylum Seekers – Projects providing advocacy, advice and support to refugees and asylum seekers, and those promoting integration.

Young People – Projects maximising the potential of young people who experience educational, social and economic disadvantage; including young people in, or leaving, care.

Priority is given to work with groups experiencing social and/or economic disadvantage and to work that tackles problems in areas of high deprivation (those that fall within the bottom third of the National Indices of Deprivation).

How To Apply

Applications may be submitted at any time. Assessment times vary from three to six months, depending on the type of grant applied for.

A set of guidelines and an application form are available to download from the Charity’s website.

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