Eligibility Criteria

Eligibility Criteria for Groups

The aim of the Community Foundation for Surrey is to award grants to community and voluntary groups that make a genuine difference to the lives of people in Surrey.

Who we support;

  • Registered charities working for the benefit of people in Surrey.
  • Voluntary and community groups which are charitable in purpose and are working for the benefit of people in Surrey.
  • Not for profit organisations such as CIC with a clear social purpose working for the benefit of people in Surrey – such organisations can generate surpluses but where they do they are reinvested to support the charitable work of the organisation.
  • National charities may apply where the local branch is independent and locally constituted, the project is clearly locally driven and accounted for, and funding will be used to support work which is for the benefit of the people of Surrey.
  • Faith groups – where the project clearly benefits the wider community.

To be eligible you should have;

Small and new groups which are not constituted may apply under the umbrella of another group which will act as a fund holder for the grant. We will require their supporting documents.

What kind of projects can we fund?

We can make grants to support most types of community activity depending on the range of funds available.

This includes:

  • Core costs / essential running costs
  • Revenue costs
  • Capital costs
  • New projects
  • Existing projects
  • One-off initiatives

We cannot support:

  • For profit businesses
  • National programmes without a specific benefit to Surrey
  • Faith groups where the project is exclusively for the benefit of members or for proselytising
  • Councils, Parish Councils or schools (PTAs set up as a charity can apply)
  • Projects that are based outside of Surrey
  • Projects which have already taken place or items purchased prior to or during a grant application
  • Unspecified expenditure for general appeals or fund-raising events/activities
  • Core costs for CICs
  • CIC limited by Shares
  • Requests to build reserves
  • Funding for Statutory obligations
  • Political activities

Where there are possible external requirements such as planning permission, please ensure that you have checked whether planning permission is needed prior to submitting the application and if planning permission is needed, that you have commenced the process of obtaining permission.

Please note organisations which hold a high level of free reserves are unlikely to be funded.

Conditions of Grant

Any grant award is made with the following conditions:

• Any and all monies awarded must be used for exclusively charitable purposes.
• The award is intended only to fund the items specified in your request and should be recorded as Restricted income in your accounts.
• If the project/activity changes in any way from the original application, the Community Foundation for Surrey will be notified immediately. Significant variations may result in the grant being altered or withdrawn.
• Our grants are usually intended to be used within twelve months. If you have been unable to start using the grant within three months of receipt, or it cannot be used for the purpose for which it was awarded you must contact the Foundation as soon as possible.
• An End of Grant Form will be completed and returned to the Community Foundation for Surrey. Further applications cannot be invited where grant monitoring is overdue.
• A copy of your organisation’s annual accounts for the period will be provided to the Community Foundation and these will clearly show the grant award from the Community Foundation for Surrey.
• Public information about any grant awarded may be shared in open datasets. No personally identifying information will be published

Our Priorities

Our priorities are expressed in four broad areas – which inevitability overlap.

  • Health & Wellbeing – Advance people’s physical and mental health, wellbeing and safety
  • Education & Skills – Improve life skills, education, employability and enterprise
  • Disadvantage & Exclusion – Promote reduction of isolation and disadvantage and access to local services
  • Stronger Communities – Maximise ability to strengthen community cohesion and build social capacity

In addition, our funds will support Arts Culture and Heritage and Environment projects where they address social welfare and community need.

Funding to Social Enterprise and CICs

The Foundation recognises that a Social Enterprise (SE) and Community Interest Companies (CIC) are increasingly part of the wider Third Sector and as such they are often in a good position to tackle social issues by generating income as part of their normal operation. Therefore, when a SE or CIC makes a grant application it is important for the applicant to demonstrate a sound business model or strong financial track record.
If you are a Social Enterprise (including CIC), in addition to meeting our general criteria you will need to demonstrate:
• the public benefit and clear protection against private benefit (CICs should provide CIC 36/37
Public Benefit Statement)
• that you are independent
• that you have social and/or environmental objectives and evidence that these are being achieved
• you earn 50% or more of income from trading
• evidence that more than 50% of profit is being put back into the social and/or environmental purposes
• that all residual assets would go to social and/or environmental purposes on dissolution
• a track record or sound business model through the provision of a business plan
• that you have a minimum of three directors, the majority of whom are not paid employees
• that the salaries and benefits of any paid directors are approved by a majority of nonexecutive directors and are reasonable and proportionate to the work they do and the financial position of the organisation

The Foundation would prefer that a SE or CIC will have been registered with the appropriate Regulatory Body for twelve months prior to the date of the grant application. The Foundation would normally expect a SE or CIC to have become self-sustaining within four years from incorporation but
will consider applications from those which have been established for a longer period than this, providing the application is for capacity building or a new initiative that will develop services for the ultimate benefit of the user group.

Guidance notes for Individuals

We currently have three Funds that award grants to individuals. We recommend you read through the Fund Guidance Notes before submitting an Expression of Interest. Use the links below to find out more about the Funds including eligibility criteria.

Carers Support (Guildford) Fund

Making small grants to carers who live in the Borough of Guildford in order to provide them with a respite from their caring role.

David Tyson Memorial Fund

Supporting young people to develop skills and pursue a career within the engineering/rail engineering field.


Surrey Young People’s Fund

Supporting disadvantaged young people to gain access to training and employment.

Expression of Interest Form

If you have more than one project you need to fund or don’t know how to proceed please call the Grants Team on 01483 478092 for an informal chat.

Please note that we do not award retrospective grants – be sure to allow plenty of time to go through the grants process. For groups applying we would recommend you allow a minimum of 3 months. The process for individuals can be turned around quicker but please do still allow plenty of time, the process can take up to 2 months.