Accessible & Inclusive Grantmaking Programme
Recent research suggests that over a third of people with disabilities experience difficulties related to their impairment in accessing public, commercial and community sector services.
The most common barriers to accessing buildings for adults with impairments are:
- Moving around the building (stairs, doors or narrow corridors) – 44%
- Inadequate lifts or escalators – 23%
- Difficulty with approach areas due to a lack of ramps/handrails – 22%
- Parking problems – 21%
- Bathroom facilities (location, layout, size) – 17%
- Footpath design and surfaces – 15%
Impairments which affect accessibility are not always obvious, and this grant has been designed to support modifications to premises for all considerations, including mobility, visual, hearing, limited dexterity and hidden disabilities – any of which can affect a client or service user’s ability to access and make best use of the services provided by the community & voluntary sector.
LFT recognises that poor access to services can be a barrier to individuals’ independence and has a detrimental impact on their ability to participate in local community life. We believe supporting charities to make their premises accessible for beneficiaries and service users is vital to ensure the needs of everyone in our community are recognised and inclusivity is promoted.
LFT Charitable Trust is a Belfast based family foundation offering small grants and support.
Our priority is to fund partner organisations which make a lasting difference to people’s lives; focus on reducing isolation, inequality and stigma; and inspire and empower individuals to realise their potential and share in the life of the whole community.
Objective of the Accessible & Inclusive Grantmaking Programme
The aim of this LFT Grant making Programme is to support charities undertake modifications which make their premises accessible for those with disabilities and better equipped to welcome and serve the whole community.
Applications are welcomed from organisations that have identified shortcomings in the accessibility of their premises and are committed to addressing these and building socially inclusive communities.
Examples of projects that could be considered include:
- Modifications to premises which may include signage, handrails, step edges, door handles, automatic doors, ramps, lifts, lighting, contrasting floor coverings, low counters, stair lifts;
- Accessible facilities (i.e. toilets/washrooms/quiet spaces);
- Plant and machinery costs which may include specialist furniture, counter or room induction loops;
- Accessible outside spaces with raised flower beds, paving, wheelchair access and accessible green houses.
Projects should recognise the main aim of this funding is to fund projects that will increase participation by a greater, and more inclusive, number of people in the charities’ activities.
To apply, applicants should set out their project proposal (no longer than three A4 pages) referencing the following:
- Background to the organisation: mission and objectives, history, population served and current activities.
- Premises: Who owns the property and has permission been granted for the proposed modifications? What are the terms of your lease/tenancy agreement and when is it expected to expire?
- Accessibility & Inclusivity: How do you rate your organisation in terms of accessibility and inclusivity? What barriers to access have you identified that limit your ability to meet the needs of your community? Who does this barrier affect and how?
- Proposed Project: How do you propose to overcome / address the barriers you have identified?
- Impact: What evidence do you have to support the belief that undertaking these alterations/modifications will increase the number of people your organisation can engage with and support?
- Budget: Please outline the total project budget, indicating whether the figures provided are quotations or estimates for the works and state how much funding are you applying for?
Applications for grants not exceeding £7,000 or 70% of total eligible costs, whichever is the lowest, are invited. Only expenditure incurred for the purposes of the project and that can be directly attributed to the expected outputs/outcomes will be eligible.
As with all funders, it is likely that demand will exceed available funds and so this will be a competitive process.
Priority will be given to initiatives that:
- can demonstrate evidence that the proposed project will directly result in the participation of people who were previously excluded or marginalised on account of their disability.
The deadline for receipt of applications is 5pm Tuesday 12th September 2023.
Applications should be made by email to firstname.lastname@example.org
LFT welcomes applications from prospective Grant Partners meeting the following criteria:-
- Registered charity
- Operational in Northern Ireland
- Supporting beneficiaries / service users in NI
- Have an income of less than £500k per annum
- Have security of tenure
- Have identified the relief of poverty, need and distress and/or the advancement of health or the saving of lives as their charitable objectives with the Charity Commission of NI
Financial commitments are envisaged from November 2023 with a requirement to commence project delivery within three months of receipt of a letter of offer. Projects must have a duration of less than 12 months.
Successful applicants will be required to obtain all necessary statutory consents.
Reporting & Evaluation
LFT welcome the opportunity to visit the project during the delivery period and will seek an impact report from funded projects on completion of the project.
Enquiries at any stage of the application process are welcomed by the Secretariat. Grantmaking decisions are made by LFT Board of Trustees.