Harnessing the Power of Communities

Grant size: £500 to £5,000 per year over 2 years

Location: Leeds

Deadline: 20/02/2020 at 12 noon

Harnessing the Power of Communities

Forum Central and Leeds Community Foundation are working in partnership with funding from West Yorkshire and Harrogate Health and Care Partnership (WY&H) to ensure the Third Sector is better connected, influential and resourced and an active, integral part of local health and care systems transformation and systems-wide culture-shift.

Harnessing the Power of Communities (HPoC) is the WY&H Transformation programme to embed the third sector across all areas of activity through both inclusion and investment. Our vision is to establish a new relationship with communities built around good work on the co-production of services and care in order to support people to greater self-care, prevent ill-health, and the implementation of the Five Year Forward View and NHS Long Term Plan ambitions to join-up community services.

This small grants programme will support organisations and projects which will improve the health and wellbeing of people in communities identified as the most deprived in Leeds, building on local assets to address locally identified needs.  Part of the wider Harnessing the Power of Communities programme, it aims to develop, strengthen and sustain Third Sector community activity in Leeds that demonstrates health outcomes and build the capacity of the third sector as an integral part of the health and care system.



This grant programme follows on from West Yorkshire and Harrogate Health and Care Partnership’s 2018-19 investment in Leeds, but in 2019-2020 is focusing specifically on small grants funding that meet the Leeds System health and care priorities and align with the Leeds Health and Care Plan.  The ambition is to grow and sustain our diverse third sector. This grant programme will invest in the third sector to deliver interventions which help people stay healthy and well which aligns to demand from the system for delivering and evaluating health and wellbeing outcomes, and supports system changes such as Local Care Partnerships.

The Small grants programme will open for applications in January 2020 with two year projects completing by May 2022 at the latest.


Who can apply?

Community groups, charities, social enterprises or other charitable organisations from the third sector that:

  • Have a constitution or other relevant governance document
  • Have a management committee/board of directors/trustees of at least three unrelated people
  • Have a bank account under the name of the group with at least two unrelated signatories (if your organisation doesn’t have its own bank account, but does meet all of the other criteria, please contact us to discuss how we can work around this)
  • Are based in or supporting people living in the Leeds Metropolitan District Area.

Because this is targeted as a small grants round, preference will be given for organisations with lower incomes ie income of less than £100k in the last financial year, however organisations with an income over 100K whose proposal is clearly supporting other organisations to deliver interventions or build capacity for delivering and evaluating health and wellbeing outcomes in communities will be considered.


Size of Grant

The minimum request is £500. The maximum is £10,000 for a two year project. 

Whilst the grant can be used to part-fund a wide range of activities, we like to see the impact our support is having. Accordingly, we prefer for our grant to equal at least 50% of the total cost of the activity or project within the criteria specified below.

Only one application per organisation can be considered. 

The total funding pot is £150,000.



What can the Fund support?

We are looking to support local organisations and projects which will improve the health and wellbeing of people and communities across Leeds through:

  • Supporting ambitions identified in the refreshed Leeds Plan and the other outcomes identified in the change model (i.e. innovation in the sector which will contribute to supporting the system to understand the value of the sector’s approaches / greater influence – leading by doing, rather than talking about doing)
  • Increasing the capacity of smaller organisations to deliver and evaluate health and wellbeing outcomes
  • Responding to system changes including Social Prescribing and Local Care Partnerships.

This will include:

  • Focusing on prevention, wellbeing and supporting people to be connected to their communities
  • Addressing health Inequalities
  • Putting people and communities at the heart of things and co-producing local solutions
  • Delivering strengths-based, asset-based, person-centred approaches to health and care
  • Empowering and amplifying the least heard voices and working with and in communities where connections with the health and care system are the least developed
  • Evaluation in order to demonstrate health and wellbeing outcomes.

Activity must also be in line with one or more of the Leeds Plan goals (please click here for latest Leeds Plan DRAFT)

  • Promoting Good Health
  • Connected Personalised Care Closer to people and their home
  • Mentally Healthy City for all

If the fund is oversubscribed, applications that are addressing the local health priorities identified through Local Care Partnership or areas of greatest need or will be prioritised.  If you are unsure what local health priorities have been identified by local people in your community, please contact Pip Goff (Third Sector and Community Local Care Partnerships Development Manager) at Forum Central on 0113 242 1321.

We aim for successful projects to start delivery/project activity in May 2020.


Types of activities that can be funded

Within the criteria above, we would be particularly keen to support some of the following:

  • Addressing health inequalities in communities who are ranked as most disadvantaged. This may be about prevention, access to health care, focus on specific medical conditions, or improving wider determinants of health (such as increasing income; employment skills and learning, housing or developing friendships)
  • Opportunities to test innovative, community-led and co-produced solutions on delivering health and care outcomes
  • Projects that champion asset-based development approaches and principles
  • Activity that fills identified gaps in current service or community provision
  • Activity that reaches and works alongside the least heard voices in the health and care system in Leeds

We encourage all applications to consider:

  • How they will evidence learning and demonstrate and evaluate health outcomes from the project; applicants should consider including costs for external evaluation or additional internal capacity to ensure they can effectively report on this
  • Full Cost Recovery, including a relevant portion of management costs and overheads
  • Staff costs, which should wherever possible include paying staff at least the real Living Wage
  • How they envisage a successful project could be sustained after this funding ends




Grants will not be awarded to or for:

  • For-profit organisations or statutory organisations (e.g. schools and hospitals)
  • Retrospective funding (activity and costs that have already taken place)
  • Grant-making to other organisations and/or individuals
  • Activity that promotes a particular political or religious point of view


When can you apply?

 The programme will open on the 9 January 2020 and the deadline to apply is 12 noon Thursday 20 February 2020.

Funding will be awarded in April 2020 in order that projects can start delivery from 1 May 2020.


Briefing Event

We are holding a briefing event for the programme at 10:00am on Tuesday 21st January at the office of Squire Patton Boggs in Leeds City Centre. Please click here to register and book your place.


How do you apply for a grant?

You can apply using the Apply Now button to the left of this webpage. If you are unable to apply online or would like further support or advice, please contact us.   You will also need to submit a signed copy of your organisation’s governance document, signed copy of accounts, and list of management committee/board members. Copies of Safeguarding policy documents will be requested where applicable.

If you are successful, you will be asked to sign a funding agreement document and provide evidence of a bank account with two people who sign for transactions.

To start filling in the online form, follow the link at the end of this document. We strongly suggest you submit your application at your earliest opportunity. Incomplete applications cannot be considered.  

What happens after you’ve applied?

We will acknowledge the receipt of your application.  We will then assess your application and may need to contact you and, if you are a new applicant to Leeds Community Foundation, your referee during this time.  If your application is shortlisted, it will then be submitted to an independent awards panel for further consideration. We’ll tell you their decision as soon as possible after they have met.

If you are successful, the grant letter/e-mail will include any additional conditions set by the panel and/or the grant payment and a grant funding agreement you will need to sign. The grant must be spent within 24 months of the date of our letter confirming the grant. You must also complete an end of grant report telling us how the grant has been spent and what was achieved. The deadline for doing so will be specified in your offer letter. Please note that failure to provide appropriate monitoring information will exclude your organisation from applying to future grants schemes.

If your bid is not successful, we will let you know the reasons for declining it. Please note we have limited funding available and we are not able to fund every application we receive, no matter how deserving the project is. The decisions made by the grants panel are final.


Reporting and evaluation

Successful applicants will be asked to complete an interim report by mid November 2020 – template to be supplied. The learning and evidence gathered will feed into the evaluation report of the wider Harnessing the Power of Communities programme due around this time.

A short additional year 1 interim report will be needed to enable the second grant allocation to be released.

A final End of Grant report (template to be supplied) will need to be submitted at the end of year 2 reporting on the health outcomes and learning for the project as a whole.



If your application is successful, you will be asked to credit support from the West Yorkshire and Harrogate Health and Care Partnership and Leeds Community Foundation, on all materials related to the funded work.

You may additionally be asked to provide opportunities to publicise the funded work – either through site visits, taking part in media calls or information for social media.


To Apply

Click on the Apply Now button to the left of this page for the online application.

If you post documents to us please send them to the address below using the correct postage and make sure the documents are received by us before the deadline. If you require more information about this fund please contact Leeds Community Foundation on 0113 242 2426 or email grants@leedscf.org.uk.


 A PDF of this information is available to download here.


For further details on the background to the Health and Wellbeing Board’s revised Leeds Plan please see the Board paper and presentation slides.