Here at Mid Sussex District Council we recognise the importance of community projects, and the vital role these initiatives play in the growth of a vibrant community. We are committed to ensuring that local groups feel supported in the delivery of their projects and events.

We recognise that distinct groups within the community bring unique perspectives and talents. By providing a platform for all to bid, we embrace the diversity that enriches our district and the potential for grassroots change.

We look forward to collaborating with you.

If after reading the information below, you need any assistance or are unsure of what you need to do or provide, please get in touch with one of the team by emailing communities@midsussex.gov.uk

How are our grants awarded?

We follow a strict criterion when awarding grants, see below for details of how they are awarded. 

At our Cabinets Grants Panel on 16 October 2023 it was agreed that moving forward, the criteria for eligible community grants would be extended to focus on grants that address the impact of the cost of living crisis, poverty and climate change. The new criteria includes the consideration of how a project contributes to delivery of the UN Sustainable Development Goals. 

Principles of Funding
  • The project will benefit residents in Mid Sussex
  • There is evidence to show a demand and/or addresses identified needs
  • The project is unique and does not duplicate other existing services
  • The outcomes and objectives are clear and meet our priorities
  • There are robust monitoring and evaluation methods in place for the project
  • The project demonstrates value for money
  • There is evidence of working in partnership with others
  • The project is open to all and has an equal opportunities policy
  • The project demonstrates long-term viability including how ongoing costs will be met
What are our priority areas

Strong and Resilient Communities

  • Work with partner organisations to build sustainable communities that will deliver a better quality of life for all.

Community Safety

  • Safer communities
  • Domestic abuse

Health and Wellbeing

  • Social isolation and loneliness
  • Mental health
  • Health inequalities
  • Dementia
  • Inclusive sports
  • Young people

Community Development

  • Volunteering in the community
  • Social inclusion, community cohesion and integration
  • Youth and/or family focused interventions
  • Rural resilience
  • Environmental projects for green recovery
UN Sustainable Development Goals

Assessment criteria has been extended to include consideration of how a project contributes to delivery of the UN Sustainable Development Goals.  Please take a look.

There are 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), which are an urgent call for action by all countries - developed and developing - in a global partnership. They recognise that ending poverty and other deprivations must go together with strategies that improve health and education, reduce inequality, and spur economic growth – all while tackling climate change and working to preserve oceans and forests.

The Council has embedded the UN Sustainable Development Goals into our key strategies such as, the District Plan and they set the framework for our Sustainable Economy Strategy. Aligning the assessment criteria to the SDGs will support delivery of these strategies.

The focus for determining successful bids will be weighted towards how they meet the UN Goals. Preference will be given, to those projects which aim to tackle issues such as inequality, health and wellbeing, climate change and poverty. Applicants will be asked to indicate how their project meets the UN Sustainable Development Goals. Projects must meet at least one and preferably at least three of the UN SDG. The assessment matrix has been revised with the UN Sustainability Goals being considered.

When are Community Grants awarded?

Generally, community grants are awarded by a Cabinet Grants Committee three times per year, Spring, Summer, and Autumn.

The exact dates can vary year to year but currently the following dates apply:

  • Cabinet Grants Panel Committee meeting will take place on Monday 8 July 2024
  • Applications are currently open
  • Applications close 7 May 2024
  • Applicants will be advised of the outcome no later than 21 days after the panel has met

Further Committee dates will be confirmed later in the year.

How to apply

You can apply online, please read the guidelines and information on this page before you start your application, it will help you to have the correct information to hand and make the process easier for you.

Apply here

Read this information before you start the application 

You will need to have the following information to hand:

Information about your organisation, for example

  • Charity number (if it’s a charity, company registration number if a company)
  • Names and contact details of management, trustees, chairpersons, treasurers
  • Date your organisation started; how many people involved in organisation
  • Membership of any national body or institution
  • Accounting information, recent bank statements and last two years' annual accounts
  • Details of the project

What supporting documents do you need with your application?

You will need to provide information to accompany your application form, depending on the category of project you are applying for and your organisation type.

All applicants will need to provide the following:

  • Constitution or set of rules
  • Last two years' annual accounts or statement of income and expenditure
  • Recent original bank statement from any current and investment account
  • Equal Opportunities Policy

The maximum grant you can apply for is £5000.

In addition to the above:

If the project involves the purchase of equipment above £500 per item, then two alternative quotes are required.

Who can apply

You can apply if:

  • The grant will be of direct benefit to the residents of Mid Sussex District
  • You are properly formed and have a governing document, a constitution or a company registration, with a bank account and financial records (or financial projections if newly formed)
  • Your organisation and/or services are open to all and you have an equal opportunities policy
  • Your project meets at least one of our priority areas
  • The number of awards that each organisation can receive (directly or indirectly) is limited to one application in each financial year

What we will not fund

We will not fund
  • Activities promoting political activities or specific religious beliefs
  • General appeals and day-to-day running costs (This includes and is not limited to monthly/annual rents, utility bills, insurance, regular staff salaries)
  • Loan re-payments
  • Individuals
  • Private organisations operating as a business to make a profit or surplus
  • Local groups and organisations whose fundraising is sent to their Headquarters for distribution to other areas
  • Education, health or social service activities, where central government, the health authority or county council are the most appropriate funder
  • Town based events where the Town/Parish Council are a more appropriate funder
  • Projects that have started or finished
  • Retrospectively, for goods or services procured prior to receipt of a grant offer
  • Ongoing maintenance, routine repairs and renewals
  • Organisations holding more than 9 months’ unrestricted reserves
  • Projects that do not demonstrate sustainability over the medium term
  • Annual events that have been held in the same or similar format in previous years

What happens when we receive your application

After receipt of application

On receipt, we will check that your application is eligible, and you have supplied all the necessary supporting information. We will then look to see:

  • How your group is set up and managed – by looking at your constitution
  • The financial need for support from the Council, and how your group’s finances are managed by looking at your accounts and financial information
  • If there is strong evidence of need/demand for your project/activity
  • Who will benefit from the project you are running
  • Whether your organisation has a good understanding of Equal Opportunities
  • How your project/activity contributes to the Council’s Priorities
  • What the expected outcomes and impact of your project/activity
  • How the project will be measured and evaluated
  • Whether the project represents good value-for-money, and that the amount of grant requested is relative to the proposed benefits
  • Whether the project will directly benefit the residents of Mid Sussex
  • Whether the group has sought and secured other sources of funding
  • Whether the group is best placed to deliver the project, or will it duplicate the work of others
  • Whether the group is working with, or linking to, other organisations
  • Whether the group is known to the Council and has a good track record of work

Following on from assessment, the officer will ask for any additional information that may be required. Once the assessment is complete, the project will be considered by either the Cabinet Grants Panel or Cabinet.  Members of the public are welcome to attend the meeting but will not be able to speak in support of any applications.

You may contact the assessment officer if you wish to know the date when your application will be considered.

After the Committee Meeting 

You will be notified of the outcome of the meeting by letter within 21 working days of the decision. If you have been successful, the grant may be paid in instalments, or in one lump sum, according to the type of grant requested and the nature of the project.

If you are unsuccessful  

The decision of the Cabinet Grants Panel, or the Cabinet, on your project is final. If, however, you have concerns about the way that your application was administered, please contact communities@midsussex.gov.uk.

If you would like some ideas about alternative sources of funding, then please contact the team at Mid Sussex Voluntary Action (MSVA) who can offer support to voluntary and community groups to help with policies and procedures, governance matters and fundraising. For more information visit their website. 

Successful Applications

All applications will hear from the Communities Team no later than 21 days after the Grants Panel has met but usually within 10 days. If you have a successful bid, at the end of your grant you will need to fill in the End of Grant form.


Contact Us

If you need further information please contact the team at communities@midsussex.gov.uk

Last updated: 17 April 2024