Grant Criteria & Application Process

The Alternative Giving CIO wants to support groups, communities and organisations who, through addressing homelessness or people presenting as vulnerable, aim to enhance the lives of others particularly those most marginalised by society.

It is a stipulation of the Charity that the beneficiaries of funded projects must be situated within Wolverhampton.

Please do not apply if you do not meet this criteria as your application will not be considered.

Download the Application Form

About Alternative Giving CIO

The generosity and kindness of Wolverhampton residents and visitors is an asset worth nurturing and could be constructively directed to local charities. Wolverhampton boasts a number of agencies and charities that do excellent work in assisting the homeless and those threatened with homelessness in areas such as accommodation, education and employment and drug and alcohol rehabilitation.

The Alternative Giving CIO will enable local charities to showcase local initiatives that offer practical support to homeless individuals and those that struggle with alcohol and drugs. It will also dispel some of the myths and misunderstanding about homelessness, entitlements to welfare and access to treatment.

The Criteria

We believe that groups, communities and organisations have the potential to contribute to the improvement of homelessness or people presenting as vulnerable in their local area.

Therefore, we provide grants of between £500 and £5000 to help put ideas into action and to run projects that benefit those who are homeless or vulnerable in the City of Wolverhampton.

When we assess projects, we are looking for:

  • Projects that identify a specific homelessness or social and personal issue and proposal to carry out activities that will clearly help to address that issue.
  • Projects and initiatives that will provide further opportunities and stepping stones to leave a lasting legacy for people who are homeless or vulnerable, for example, employment, medical, benefits, volunteering opportunities, confidence building, etc.

What we can fund

We can fund homelessness or project costs including, for example:

  • accommodation
  • provision of items such as furniture, bedding, clothing, food, fuel etc.
  • payment for services such as house decorating, insulation and repairs, outings and entertainment, rates and utilities etc.
  • provision of facilities such as tools or books, travelling expenses, vocational training etc.

What we cannot fund:

  • Non-homelessness or non-housing related issues
  • Individuals
  • Research projects


We require two references. Your referees should be from people who work in a professional capacity (not a friend or relative) and that you have known for at least a year. Your referees should not be involved in your project.


Applications for grants, of between £500 to £5000 Alternative Giving CIO, are invited from groups who believe their actions to be in pursuit of the aims of Alternative Giving CIO. For exceptional projects, applications over £5000 may be considered.

We ask all applicants to provide a detailed project budget as part of their application, with a breakdown of exactly what the funding is for and how the funding will be spent.

Application is by letter, accompanied by this Application Form including the following information:

  • Full contact details including name, address, telephone number, email etc.
  • Confirmation of legal status e.g. constituted group (we will require a copy of your constitution if you are successful), charity (please include registered charity number) or community interest company (CIC) (please include registered company number)
  • A clear overview of the group’s aims and objectives
  • Precise details of the project for which funding is sought including:
    • Project activities
    • Proposed start and end date
    • A detailed budget breakdown
    • Project outcomes
    • Arrangements for monitoring and evaluating the project

Before submitting your application, please ensure that you have included all of the required documentation.

  • Confirmation of charity registration
  • Covering letter
  • Concise proposal of approximately 3-4 pages with references
  • Project budget

Applications are by email to

Please send your completed application with the title of Alternative Giving CIO

Applications are considered on a rolling basis. Once you have submitted your application we will contact you via email to confirm the decision date.

All applicants are welcome to re-apply for funding.

Funding Decision Process

By applying to the Alternative Giving CIO, you are agreeing for the Charity to use your details to contact you in the future with the details provided in the application form. The Charity will store your details for 12 months after you submit your application.

The Board of Trustees reviews applications and decides which projects to fund on a quarterly basis. For applications that we would like to fund, a trustee contacts the referees and (subject to satisfactory references) will inform the applicant that they have been successful. Sometimes a trustee may contact you to find out more about your project if more information is needed to make a decision.

What happens if my application is successful?

If you are successful, we will contact your referees. Subject to satisfactory references, we will contact you for your organisation’s bank details.

We ask all of our successful applicants to send us an update after 6 months – this could be a short write up of what has happened since you applied or photos of the project in action – so that we can see the difference that your project is making.

What happens if my application is unsuccessful?

The trustees will only support applications that meet our funding criteria – we will advise you by email that your application has not been successful. You are welcome to reapply if you have made changes to your original application. Unfortunately we are not able to give feedback to unsuccessful applicants.

Top Tips for Applicants

Please do not apply for funding if your beneficiaries are not situated within Wolverhampton. Your application will not be considered.

  • DO make sure that your project fits what the Charity funds, before starting to write your application.
  • DO explain how your project will make a difference, and what problem it addresses
  • DO give a detailed budget breakdown as part of your application
  • DO give details of who will deliver the project and what the roles entail
  • DO be creative. We are interested to hear innovative new ways that groups are tackling homelessness and vulnerability issues in their communities.
  • DO provide referees who you know in a professional capacity, but who are not a part of the project.
  • DO ensure you are able to run a project without any technical/compliance/regulation issues (e.g. consider what qualification or checks you might need, such as Safeguarding Policy/DBS checks etc.)
  • DO be patient. Trustees meet every quarter. It takes time after each meeting to contact applicants and issue funding to successful projects. Unfortunately, we do not have the capacity to give feedback about unsuccessful applications.