Responsive Grant Making

The Responsive Grant-Making programme is our main programme where we are pleased to consider applications for our support.  In addition to the details below, we have a printable summary of the responsive programme and how to apply (PDF, 2 pages – but please note that criteria will change after Feb 2021 as explained below).

Whilst our criteria are relatively broad, grants will only be considered where all the following points are met.

Our responsive grants are usually unrestricted one-off grants of £500 – £750 each. Occasionally the trustees may award other amounts (and for a particularly strong applications we may occasionally make a double award). But in considering an application to us, it is worth thinking how an unrestricted grant of £500 could allow your charity to do more than at present.

See the how to apply page if you wish to apply for a responsive grant.

The Trustees criteria in relation to new responsive grant applications are as follows:

  • We only make grants to organisations, not to individuals, and we do not support individual student placements/projects/courses/overseas visits of any kind.  Organisations must be UK charities and from March 2021 onwards must be based in Scotland unless the work is UK-wide (however, applications from Yorkshire-based charities will still be considered up to Feb 2021).  Please make sure your charitable status is clear on your lettehead when you write to us.  If you are applying for a project which is part of a larger charity we need the full details for the overall charity.
  • Our focus for responsive grants is support of smaller and medium-sized charities where we believe a small grant is more likely to make a difference, so no grants are made to charities with over £1M income (based on the latest available accounts for the whole charity).
  • In the case of locally-based charities (this includes local churches) our support is strictly limited to organisations based in (a) Scotland or (b) Yorkshire* – but see note below.
  • We are happy to receive applications from organisations operating UK-wide and your total income must still be under £1M (but in such cases the charity does not have to be based in Scotland).
  • We are unable to support applications where we have concerns over the organisation’s accounts and in particular where they are consistently late in submission to OSCR or to the Charity Commission.
  • We do not currently support organisations or projects where the main object is:
    • sport
    • animal welfare
    • work linked to the armed forces.

This does not mean we exclude applications involving such work – for example a mental health charity using sport as a means of therapy is welcome to apply as your objects as concerned with mental health rather than advancement of the sport. But if you decide to apply to us for work which involves any of these areas, please ensure that the actual aims of your work are clear.

*Please note that the trustees have agreed that Paristamen will no longer be making grants to local organisations in Yorkshire after the 2020/21 financial year: after that, our Responsive Grants to local organisations will focus on charities based in Scotland. The last date for us to receive applications from Yorkshire-based local charities is 1 February 2021.  (However, we will still accept applications after that date from charities based in England if they are working UK-wide provided the other criteria are met.)

  • Although we are interested in overseas development, we contribute significant amounts to this via the Planned Grant-Making fund – so we do not consider Responsive Grants for organisations working in the field of international development.
  • We do not support appeals to provide special trips or prizes to children or adults (although we are happy to consider residential activities in the UK with a clear educational or therapeutic benefit).
  • We do not support building appeals from this fund – this is simply because we feel the sort of small grants we can offer are much more likely to make a difference to your operational work. (However, we do not rule out applications for unrestricted grants simply because part of the charity’s general funds are used towards premises costs.)

We are more interested in the organisation than the project, and in the final stages of choosing which charities to support, we place considerable attention on the organisation’s charity accounts in terms of conformity to charity law and indication of a well-managed organisation.

Examples of recent grants:

Responsive grants to local charities in Scotland:

  • Multi-Cultural Family Base, Edinburgh: £750
  • Hilton Family Support, Inverness: £750
  • Dunfermline Food Bank SCIO: £750
  • Cruse Bereavement Care Scotland: £750
  • Edinburgh Headway Group: £750
  • Stirling Carers Centre: £500
  • The Fraser Community Centre, Tranent: £750
  • Leith Community Archers: £500
  • Helm Training Ltd, Dundee: £500

Responsive grants to local organisations in Yorkshire:

  • Skipper Ethel Trust, Sheffield: £500
  • MySight, York: £500
  • St Lukes Cares (Leeds): £500
  • Sidewalk Youth Project, Scarborough: £500
  • Craven Development Education Centre: £250
  • The Datic Trust, Sheffield (Galeed House): £600
  • Personal Support Unit – primarily for work in Leeds: £600
  • Relate Mid-Yorkshire: £600
  • Citizens Advice, York: £600
  • Solace – Therapy for asylum seekers (double grant): £1200.

Responsive grants to national organisations:

  • The Hardman Trust (work with prisoners): £750
  • The Civil Liberties Trust: £500
  • Maytree (support for those who are suicidal): £500
  • British Thyroid Foundation: £500
  • The Ataxia-Telangiectasia Society: £500
  • The Public Law Project: £500
  • Wintershall CIO – for the Good Friday play in Trafalgar Square: £500
  • Daylight Christian Prison Trust: £500
  • IPSEA – Independent Parental Special Education Advice: £750