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Grant Making Policy

Last revision: 14/01/2020

Grant Making Policy

1. Introduction

1.1 This grant-making policy has been adopted by the Trustees of Irish Heritage Limited (the organisation).

1.2 The purpose of this grant making policy is to:

1.2.1 Outline principles of grant-making by the Organisation;
1.2.2 Articulate the Organisation’s principles and criteria for making grants;
1.2.3 Ensure that the Trustees are discharging their duty to further the objects of the Organisation and safeguard its assets; and
1.2.4 Provide a standard of grant-making practice for the Organisation.

2. Charitable Objects

2.1 The Organisation’s Objects, as set out in Article 3 of its Articles of Association, are: for the benefit of the public generally, both in the United Kingdom and overseas:

2.1.1 to advance public education and appreciation of Irish and Anglo-Irish music, arts, literature and drama of all genres and traditions to the benefit of the community, including (but not restricted to) any or all of the following means:
2.1.2 the provision of educational programmes, tuition, classes, workshops, performances, materials and/or resources;
2.1.3 the recording of and production of classical, traditional and contemporary musical, artistic and/or dramatic work for the public at large;
2.1.4 the provision of facilities for use by the public in furtherance of Articles 3.1.1 and 3.1.2 above (facilities in this Article 3 means access to buildings and equipment and organising activities); and
2.1.5 such other means as the Trustees may from time to time determine;
2.1.6 to relieve sickness and to preserve and promote physical and mental health through music therapy, dance and performance;
2.1.7 for the general purposes of such charitable bodies or for such other exclusively charitable purposes (according to the law of England and Wales) in each case as the Trustees may from time to time decide.

2.2 The Organisations seeks to further those objects in several ways, including making grants to strengthen and enrich communities where the Organisation operates.

2.3 In order to get the best value for money from the limited amount of funds the Organisation has available got making grants, and to ensure that its Trustees remain responsible and accountable for the Organisation’s actions, the following arrangements have been agreed.

3. Grant Making Principles

3.1 The Organisation aims to develop a grant-making programme which is guided by the following principles:

3.1.1 Informed by local information;
3.1.2 Targeted to meet community needs, priorities and aspirations;
3.1.3 Focused to achieve maximum efficiency and effectiveness;
3.1.4 Enhancing community and voluntary activity;
3.1.5 Encouraging best practice among community and voluntary groups;
3.1.6 Implemented, monitored and evaluated to ensure optimum achievement and lessons for the future. \

3.2 In awarding grants, the Organisation aims to be proactive, fair, efficient and professional. The grant-making criteria are clear and consistent but will also remain flexible in order to ensure that donors wishes can be incorporated and that changing needs in our communities are addressed.

4. Grant Making Criteria

4.1 The Organisation may make grants to support shcarities or charitable projects within the following themes or areas:

4.1.1 Music, arts, literature or drama;
4.1.2 Education and training;
4.1.3 Promotion of health and relief from sickness or disability; or
4.1.4 In exceptional circumstances any other charitable purposes; but subject always to paragraph five below.

5. Exclusions

5.1 Grants are usually made to organisations, rather than individuals, whose activities fall within and are consistent with the Organisation’s objects. In the case of training awards, bursaries or scholarships, for example, grants can be made to individuals provided that their applications are supported by relevant educational institutions.

5.2 The Organisation will not support the following:

5.2.1 Organisations established solely for the relief of animals or plants;
5.2.2 Political promotion including political party activity;
5.2.3 The support or promotion of a religious doctrine, mission, proselytism or promotion of the beliefs of a particular faith (beyond basic religious/cultural awareness raising);
5.2.4 Statutory or other Government agencies in the discharge of their statutory duties;
5.2.5 Retrospective or deficit funding;
5.2.6 Any project or organisation which contravenes the Equality Act 2010;
5.2.7 Organisations that cannot demonstrate public benefit as defined by the Charity Commission;
5.2.8 Organisations requesting funding towards reserves or which have significant financial reserves, except in exceptional circumstances; or
5.2.9 Any project or organisation which conflicts with the objects or values of the Organisation or which may damage the reputation or business of the Organisation.

6. Publicity

6.1 While the grant-making programme is in its infancy or available funds are relatively low, the Organisation will rely principally on word of mouth for the identification of potential grant recipients. This will involve the Organisation liaising with partners in the community to ensure that any potential grant recipients are suitable.

6.2 When the grant-making programme has become more established and the Organisation has made significant funds available, the Organisation will advertise the programme more proactively and put in place a formal application process.

7. Grants Committee

7.1 The Trustees of the Organisation may, in accordance with its Articles of Association, delegate to a committee the power to recommend that the Organisation may make specific grants.

7.2 The committee shall comprise of at least three members of whom a majority shall be Trustees and may include, for example, specialists in managing grant programmes, representatives of the local community or others whom the Trustees believe will enhance the scrutiny of grant recommendations.

7.3 Any recommendation by the committee shall be subject to the approval of the Trustees.

8. Consideration

8.1 The Organisation is aware that fraud and mismanagement can take place in all stages of grant funding. The Trustees will always request a copy of the potential recipients’s correct governing document and its latest annual report and accounts as well as any safeguarding policy, where applicable. The Trustees will also look for the following potential indicators:

8.1.1 Applicant unknown to local umbrella orgganisations or other local groups;
8.1.2 Very new groups;
8.1.3 Applicant having only a mobile phone number and/or a Post Office Box address;
8.1.4 Discrepancies between financial information provided to the Organisation and that in the accounts or on the Charity Commission’s website;
8.1.5 Failure to file annual accounts or reports on time.

8.2 Such indicators may lead the Organisation to carry out more rigorous investigation of a particular potential recipient.

8.3 The Organisation will judge each application for a grant on its merits and in accordance with the principles and criteria set out in paragraphs three and four above. It will assess the details of the project or initiative, including timescales for implementation and the means of obtaining value for money. It will also consider whether the applicant is capable of undertaking the project and has a satisfactory financial position.

8.4 All applicants must be able to demonstrate their charitable purpose and public benefit in ordere to be considered. The Charities Act 2011 defines a charitable puspose as one which falls within the list of 13 “descriptions of purposes” set out in Section 3 (1) and is for “the public benefit”. The Charity commission has published guidance on its interpretation of the law in ‘Charitable Purposes and Public Benefit’ available at

8.5 Any grant offered may be conditional on the availability of funding from other sources.

8.6 The Trustees’ decision shall be recorded in the minutes of the Board meeting.

9. Awards

9.1 Once a grant is approved, the Organisation will notify the relevant party. This letter will be accompanied by the grant agreement setting out various conditions of grant including the specification and/or management of the project, monitoring and reporting requirements, promotional activities, future use and so on.

9.2 To accept a grant award, the recipient will first have to sign the grant agreement and return it to the Organisation. The grant may be released by the Organisation once the signed grant agreement has been received.

10. Monitoring and Reporting

10.1 The Organisation will monitor any narrative and financial reports provided by a grant recipient to ensure that the grant is being appropriately spent.

10.2 Forms and evidence of expenditure (e.g. copies of receipts and invoices) must be received by the Organisation promptly and in accordance with the grant agreement. If not, the Organisation will contact the recipient requesting further information.

10.3 In the event the Organisation considers a recipient has breached the grant agreement, the Organisation reserves the right to request the return of the total g=rant awarded. No future funding will be provided to any recipients in breach for a minimum of two years, and then only if the recipient is able to provide evidence of action taken to prevent fraud and strengthen management capacity, including support sought from the local CVS or relevant umbrella organisation.

11. Future Policy

This policy, approved by the Trustees of the Organisation on 14th January 2020, will be reviewed annually to ensure that it continues to meet the objects of the Organisation.