We always receive more applications than we are able to fund so we have to make difficult decisions to spend our funds as effectively as possible.
We use these overriding criteria in assessing applications:
- Degree of need – areas of societal need where law as tool to bring about positive change and to prevent harm is under-resourced, under-utilised and under-developed and where the Foundation has a distinct role to play.
- Degree of benefit – where law has the potential to bring about significant positive change and to prevent harm in ways that are sustainable and widespread.
In addition, we value these characteristics in organisations:
- Strong connections with their communities, including in their staffing and governance.
- The capacity to advocate for their organisations and on behalf of their communities, including to participate in local and national policy influencing.
- A commitment to learning and evidence, including collecting good information on outcomes and taking a reflective approach to improving their own practice.
- Embedded in a diverse ecosystem of organisations, working collaboratively and with effective referral pathways that minimise the burdens on clients.
- High quality standards including legal expertise.
- Investment in staff well-being and are supportive, inclusive places to work.
- Diverse funding base including (where relevant) maximizing Legal Aid income through efficient billing practice.
- Good infrastructure including governance, ICT, financial management, accommodation and HR.
We would not expect applicants to have most of these in place but, if your application is successful, we will work with you to identify whether there are areas you would like to strengthen, and provide further funding and/or in-kind support to do so.