Can you get grants clubs and community groups in Wales? The simple answer is… yes! We speak to grants expert and man-in-the-know Alan Jones, a Grants Officer from Pembrokeshire Sports Development, to help you find funding for your club.
Where do you start?
Take a look at the funding offered by Sport Wales. It’s also worth googling for grants offered by your local authority. Don’t forget to look at your town council too, if you have one.
Hopefully your local area will have a Grants Officer like me – so do get in touch as they will have lots of information for you.
Find out how Montgomery Lawn Tennis Club got funding to improve its facilities.
Speak to your local Association of Voluntary Services
It’s important to be aware of what your local Association of Voluntary Services can offer. In Pembrokeshire, PAVS (Pembrokeshire Association of Voluntary Services) provides access to a funding portal. Find the correct service for you in your area.
Simple and easy to use, applicants are able to provide detail about their organisation and what they need the funds for. A quick search and a whole host of potential local and UK funders are listed.
There is also a list here to help you get started.
What do you want?
You need to know what it is you want to do with any potential funding. Quite often people call me and they just think that money is available simply to keep the club going. When asked what they need money for? It will be either ‘everything’ or ‘I don’t know’!
Be prepared to answer a few questions such as
- What does your club do?
- What would your club like to do?
- How many children do you have at the club?
- How often do you get together?
- Where do you play?
- How many coaches do you have? Are they the parents of the children?
- What equipment have you got? Have you got enough?
This gives us a good picture of what type of club you are and what sort of grants you could be eligible for. If you don’t understand the question, say so! It might be that they are using a lot of jargon that can be difficult to understand if you are new to making funding applications.
From mud baths to great facilities, find out how Tumble RFC managed to get funding.
Keep it real
Remember to be realistic. Sometimes, clubs will have dreams of grandeur, an extensive wish list and a desire for facilities beyond expectation. Don’t get too carried away – keep it practical!
Do your homework
Certain grants fund certain things - for example Community Chest is a small grant which funds things like new equipment and coaching courses. It’s not going to buy you a new facility! So, do your homework and get a good understanding of the different grants and what sort of things they can support.
Are you eligible? Make sure you check the criteria that needs to be met. You don’t want to waste your time filling out forms for funding you can’t access.
Find out what Diva Sport in the South Wales Valleys managed to do with Community Chest funding.
Look further afield
Charities, Trusts or large local employers may offer support to sports clubs and other similar organisations. I remember working with a local boxing club that was looking to move premises which was obviously quite a costly exercise.
On further investigation, we became aware that the club’s coaches were ex-forces, Army and RAF. This meant that they were eligible to apply for financial support through the Armed Forces Community Covenant Grants Scheme. After satisfying the required criteria, financial assistance was approved which enabled the club to purchase the new premises and provide fantastic new facilities for the community.
Learn more about club finances Club Solutions was created to help sports clubs and volunteers in Wales. So, if you have any further questions about sports grants in Wales or finance for sports clubs in general, please feel free to get in touch with our friendly team, or let’s chat on social!