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Apply for a Community Fund Grant

Apply for a Community Fund Grant

Awards from the Community Fund are made to support charity and community projects in the Cambridge area.

Successful projects must meet the criteria of bringing benefits to the community. Please read our detailed guidance notes below before applying. If you have any questions, or would like a preliminary chat about whether your project is suitable, we encourage you to email Sarah at [email protected] or ring 01223 508970.

Community Fund Guidance Notes

Community Fund Application Form

Completed applications should be returned either electronically or in hardcopy to: –

[email protected]

The Development Office
The Leys School

Applications for grants up to and including £1,000 are assessed on a rolling basis and we aim to give you an answer within a fortnight of application.

Applications over £1,000 will be assessed three times per year. The below deadlines are for each application round; if you apply after a deadline, your application will be considered in the following round.

  • Monday 26 February 2024
  • Monday 3 June 2024

We aim to give an answer to each application within four weeks of the above deadlines.

A detailed report on the activity and impact enabled by each grant is a condition of funding. Suggestions of the sort of information to be included can be found here. We understand that the impact of each charity’s work is very different, and the reporting is not intended to be burdensome, but rather a chance for you to tell us about the great work you have carried out.

Guidance Notes for Applicants


The Community Fund is open for applications from charities and community organisations throughout the year. However, applications for large awards (in excess of £1,000) will only be considered three times per year.



Grants will be awarded to voluntary or community organisations. You do not have to be a registered charity in order to be eligible, but your group must be fully constituted and your activity or initiative must fit within one of our qualifying categories. We do not accept applications from individuals or profit-making organisations.



Awards will be made to qualifying projects for the following purposes:

  • Supporting vulnerable families, children and young people.
  • Overcoming barriers to learning and skills development from social or financial disadvantage, physical or learning disability, bullying, mental health difficulties or other trauma.
  • That encourage volunteering and community involvement.
  • That encourage participation in sporting, the arts or cultural activity, being active and promote positive mental health and wellbeing.
  • That encourage partnership with other voluntary or community organisations and other funding bodies, particularly where match funds are available, e.g. from legacies, private donation, investment income, or other external grant income.

This could cover a large range of projects. Examples include:

  • Payments for additional staff resources (salaries or expenses) but only in cases where such payments are required to enable the activity to take place.
  • Equipment or non-statutory services for nurseries or schools e.g. Forest schools, library books.
  • Equipment for Brownie, Guide or Scout Groups e.g. camping equipment.
  • Environmental improvements.
  • Play areas.
  • Counselling and support services.
  • Activities to support mental health or reduce social isolation.
  • Equipment/kit for sports teams.
  • Services or equipment to support health issues such as cancer or dementia.
  • Equipment for village/community halls.

The Community Fund can fund 100% of your project costs so you do not have to have any match funding. However, if you secure additional funding, there is no limit to what this amount can be and any funding awarded by the Community Fund can form part of your wider project costs.

Your project can be a stand-alone project, a discrete self-contained part of a larger scheme, or part of a phased project over a number of years. Funding must be used for the purposes detailed in your application and this must be clearly revealed in the activity report that you agree to provide to the Community Fund Board (within six months of the grant award) as a condition of acceptance of funding.

For any projects that are making a physical improvement to an outdoor space, you will need the landowner’s permission and you might also need other permissions, e.g. planning permission. These need to be in place before you submit your application, along with evidence of the written permission of the landowner and should be submitted as part of your application.

Projects which are ineligible:

  • Work that has already taken place.
  • Political donations.
  • Fundraising activities or challenges (e.g. costs for a sky dive etc.).
  • Day-to-day operating costs and organisation overheads.
  • Activities which collect funds for redistribution to other charities or individuals.
  • Overseas appeals.
  • Expeditions or overseas travel.
  • Projects or activities that the state has a legal obligation to provide.



Funds are available up to £5,000 per organisation per year. Larger awards may be made in exceptional circumstances where there is significant community benefit – we recommend having a chat with us before putting together your application if you think this applies to you.

An organisation can apply for up to £5,000 at once, or across multiple applications.



Small grants, up to £1,000, will be considered swiftly and we expect to be able to give you an answer within a fortnight of application.

Grants over £1,000 are considered by the Community Fund Board made up of members of our Leysian Community including Old Leysians, current Common Room, current parents of St. Faith’s and a representative of Wesley’s Chapel & Leysian Mission. These grants are assessed at the end of each academic term (see PDF guidance notes). We aim to give you an answer within three weeks.


Not necessarily, though completion to a satisfactory standard will mean your application will be considered by the Community Fund Board. All funding award decisions are made entirely at the discretion of the Board and their decision is final.

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