Fair and ethical grant making

The Armed Forces Covenant Fund Trust is experiencing very high demand on current Covenant Fund programmes. This is most likely due to a range of factors including cost of living challenges which can create an overall increase in need among vulnerable beneficiaries.

What does this mean for the Trust?

As a grant making organisation that prides itself on fair and ethical grant making, we’ll continue to do all we can to support excellent Forces projects throughout the UK to ensure we don’t lose vital support within Forces communities.

What is the Trust doing?

All of those involved in our grant making are highly experienced with an excellent understanding of the sector, the Forces community and the current needs and gaps in provision. We ensure the funding we award focuses on impact and value for money.

While every application is judged on its own merit – it is also judged as part of a national portfolio of services and projects each round to ensure a good balance of provision in support of the Armed Forces community.

Ultimately, our vision for all of our grant making is to create a thriving Armed Forces community that is valued and supported within our society. All funding we award takes us closer to this aim.

Supportive grant making

The Trust understands that the process of applying for funding can be complex.

We’ve designed our grant making process to be as informative as possible, allowing applicants to realistically manage expectations, both of their likelihood of funding, and also when dealing with their beneficiaries. We’ve consulted on the development of many of our programmes; and you can find out more about this here.

Stage of grant makingHow we make things fair and ethical
EligibilityWe can have different eligibility rules on different programmes; depending on the aim of the programmes and the changes it is seeking to make.

We put information on eligibility on the dedicated programme page for each programme; and in the programme guidance.

We also have an eligibility checker on our website for information. Our basic eligibility checker features a series of questions designed to find out if your organisation (as opposed to your project) is eligible to apply for funding from the Trust. It covers general rules of funding such as: how long an organisation must have existed, rules on retrospective funding, who are the main beneficiaries of the organisation and what type of organisation you are.
Guidance and resourcesEach one of our funding programmes has its own in-depth guidance document. While these documents can be long, the detail they give applicants is extremely important. We ensure applicants are fully informed and have access to all information required to allow you to submit your best application. We assess applications in line with the information that we put in the guidance document.
ApplicationWe keep our application form as simple as we can. What’s more, for more complex funding programmes, we sometimes use a two-step application process where organisations first submit a short expression of interest before progressing to full application. This allows us to filter out any proposals that are clearly not eligible and saves the organisations time too.
AssessmentWe have a rigorous assessment process. Every eligible application we receive is assessed by our expert team to give each organisation an equal chance of receiving funding. We use our programme guidance when we assess applications. This process may involve seeking further information from organisations where needed and presenting them in a standard format for decision making.
ModerationTo ensure our assessment process is fair and transparent, we undertake moderation of the reports created and check for a strong balance across the portfolio of applications. These robust checks and balances mean applicants can be confident of a fair assessment no matter who handles their application.
Decision makingOur Board of Trustees are an expert panel of decision makers who consider the applications and award funding based on a national picture of need, project type and funding available. We have representation from the Devolved Administrations as well as military subject matter experts.
Feedback for unsuccessful applicantsWe endeavour to provide useful and constructive feedback to as many organisations as we can, as well as a copy of their assessment report for transparency. Sometimes, applicants may have the chance to strengthen their application and reapply to a later round– or there may be an opportunity to apply to another of our funding programmes. Where this is the case, we will let them know.

Find out more

For more about the Trust, who we are and how we work, visit our About Us section.

We also invite you to read our code of ethical conduct.

Access our basic eligibility checker, here.

Find a list of frequently asked questions, here.