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Community Chest and Charity

The Community Chest

Almost twenty years ago, we set up the Community Chest to give a helping hand to local people in supporting and strengthening their community. Through our Community Chest volunteers can apply for a grant to go towards improving their local area in some way — to help the youth, elderly, disabled, arts, environment, animals and more.

We believe in working together to improve both the facilities and the lives of residents in our communities. We seek to promote, encourage and support community involvement by offering funds to local voluntary groups with clearly identified needs.

What is the Community Chest?

The Community Chest for 2019 is a pool of £50,000 pledged by Hall and Woodhouse which is enhanced with further funds raised by Hall & Woodhouse pubs.

Hall & Woodhouse is supported by Blackmore Vale Media and the Dorset Community Foundation, who provide the scheme in the Western area with publicity, advice and local knowledge. Covering the Eastern area, our partners are Sussex Newspapers and the Sussex Community Foundation.

Who can apply?

Applications are welcome from any voluntary or community organisation or group with a local interest that is based or works in our trading area in the south of England, from Devon to Kent and north to Bristol, Swindon, Bracknell and London.

Grants could be made in the following areas:

  • Youth work and activities
  • Pre-schools
  • Extracurricular school activities
  • Elderly
  • People with disabilities
  • Health and social care
  • Local arts
  • Conservation and the environment
  • Animal care

Please note: Applications will not be considered from national organisations or those that are profit making or political.

How to apply

Applications for 2019 are now closed, they will open again on 1st February 2020 and close on the 31st March 2020.

What can you apply for?

Groups can apply for grants between £300 and £3,000 to help them achieve their aims. These grants could be used towards things such as equipment and furniture, training, transport, professional assistance, or specific project resources, that will help your cause.

Before you apply…

Top Tips for Community Chest Application

  • Make sure that there is a real NEED for what you are applying for.
  • Show the judges that your organisation has made its own effort to raise funds.
  • Ensure that a Community Chest award will make a difference to your project in the immediate future.
  • Be sure to check that the timing of your event/project fits with the Community Chest cycle.
  • Please don’t apply if you are a fundraising charity that donates to other charities.
  • The Community Chest is only open to local voluntary organisations, sadly we cannot help national charities.
  • Please give as detailed a breakdown of your project’s cost as possible.

What are the judges looking for?

Each judge has their own criteria, but organisations should ask themselves the following questions:

Is there a real need for this project?
Does your project or organisation really improve the lives of local residents
or is it nice to have?

Own Efforts
What efforts have you made to help your own organisation?
How much money have you raised for your project or organisation?

How much more money is needed to make the project a reality?
Will a grant of up to £3,000 enable the project to happen?

How are the Grants divided?

Each team of judges will have around 200 applications to look through, so the organisations who have demonstrated that they have a real need, have helped themselves and that any money awarded will make a difference, are more likely to be successful.

The judges will split the applications into two groups: large awards of over £1,000 and small awards. The large awards will be shortlisted for a judges’ visit and the small awards judged on the merit of their application form only.

When will grants be awarded?

All applicants will be notified of the outcome of their application by the end of September and cheques will be presented to the successful organisations at awards evenings in Dorset and West Sussex in October.

Our Partners

Hall & Woodhouse is supported by Blackmore Vale Media and the Dorset Community Foundation who provide the scheme in the Western area with publicity, advice and local knowledge. Covering the Eastern area, our partners are The West Sussex County Times and the Sussex Community Foundation.

Previous Winners

2019 Western Area Winners 2019 Eastern Area Winners 2018 Western Area Winners 2018 Eastern Area Winners 2017 Western Area Winners 2017 Eastern Area Winners