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Early years' preventative work in England and Wales

The Trust is looking to support work which will improve the life chances for some of the most disadvantaged children in England and Wales by investing in early intervention and preventative work.

We are looking to support work with targeted groups of 0-3 year olds in England and Wales which will specifically:

  • improve the reach to these targeted groups


  • bring about improved defined outcomes for these targeted groups

We will be looking for proposals which:

  • Have defined outcomes built in with clear measurement tools and evaluation procedures in place
  • Have the flexibility to adapt to changing external factors
  • Have wide application or which have relevance for specific groups
  • Look to build on existing good practice or to trial new work

Successful organisations must be prepared to share learning from the funded work with other organisations, to increase the impact

Who can apply

Charities registered with the Charity Commission for England and Wales

Duration and size of grants

Grants may be awarded for 1, 2 or 3 years.

There is no minimum grant size and the maximum will be £50,000 per annum.

The Trust is happy to consider complete or partial funding and accepts overheads as part of a budget.

Application dates

In 2018/19 there will be 2 funding rounds:

Round 1 Stage 1 applications will open on March 26th 2018 and close on May 14th 2018.

Grant decisions will be made in July 2018

Round 2 Stage 1 applications will open on October 1st 2018 and close on November 30th 2018.

Grant decisions will be made in February 2019.


Early years’ preventative work funded in 2016-17

The Anna Freud National Centre for Children and Families

This project is funding an extension of a successful pilot to support the psychological needs of high risk babies and parents in the non-stigmatising setting of baby drop-in groups in children’s centres in Luton. The groups will be open to all but are designed to target the hard to reach in areas of high deprivation. The work will focus on the development of the skills of the early year’s workforce in the children’s centres so that they can effectively support the attachment between vulnerable parents and infants that attend their centres, helping to provide infants with the best possible support during this crucial stage of their life.

1 year’s funding: £21,508

The Cedarwood Trust

‘Wor Bairns’  is being run by this community charity on the Meadow Well estate in North Shields. The 3 year project is working to improve the outcomes of local 0-3 year olds through an emphasis on encouraging and working with parents on positive parenting. Activities include antenatal work, baby feeding and massage and play activities.

3 years’ funding. Total grant over 3 years: £124,031

Crossroads Derbyshire

This domestic refuge, specifically run for young women, will use the Trust’s grant to enhance the prospects for the babies and infants who come into the refuge with their mothers. The grant will be used to improve the facilities for the children, especially the outdoor play area; for a specialist children’s officer and for relevant training for the staff team.

3 years’ funding. Total grant over 3 years: £31,659

Cued Speech Association UK

To overcome the barriers to literacy that many deaf children face, this project will be supporting the work of the Cued Speech Association UK to make much more widely known and available the Cued Speech method of communication which enhances lip reading through 8 handshapes in 4 positions, near the mouth. The specific aim of the project is to ensure that the professionals involved with and the parents of babies and infants diagnosed as hearing impaired have the information and training available to choose and use Cued Speech. This will enable even the youngest babies to lay down the same sorts of home language development ( i.e. English for most children) as hearing children in the critical early months and years of brain development.

3 years’ funding. Total grant over 3 years: £150,000

Groundwork East

‘Wellies in the Woods’ is a three year project, delivered in four counties in the East of England, which involves working with children’s centres to enhance the confidence and skills of the centre staff and the parents of the children attending, so that children get more time playing outside in natural spaces. It will also involve training for the children’s centre’s lead agencies as well as other Groundwork regions, to spread the learning and expertise of the project, and disseminate the training materials that will be produced.

3 years’ funding. Total grant over 3 years: £49,332

Home-Start Hertfordshire

Home-Start Hertfordshire is being funded to trial a specialist Home-Start service using specifically trained volunteers to support mothers, both before and after birth, identified as being at risk of and suffering from peri-natal depression and anxiety. This trial will be independently assessed for potential extension and expansion.

18 months’ funding. Total grant over 18 months: £72,279

Northern Ballet

A grant has been made to help fund Northern Ballet’s children’s centre project which works with 2-3 years olds in the most disadvantaged areas of Leeds – using movement and creative play, to increase the children’s social, language and cognitive abilities through engaging imaginatively with a well-known, accessible story. The funding will also support the Big Dance events at the end of each series of workshops.

3 years’ funding. Total grant over 3 years: £6,000

Wild Young Parents Project

Working across Cornwall, ‘First Steps’ will develop an assessment tool to identify specific risks facing the babies and infants of the teenage parents that this organisation supports. Three keyworkers will then champion those children identified as having specific needs, as well as training crèche workers to deliver specific support. Parents will be helped to understand attachment and early development, be offered activities to help with the development of their babies, as well as being helped to make links with appropriate support agencies.

3 years’ funding. Total grant over 3 years: £98,512

Women’s Aid

Women’s Aid, the grassroots federation of more than 200 member organisations providing life-saving services for women and children facing domestic abuse and violence, is being funded for new work to enhance the prospects of babies and infants in such situations. This will be done through offering training, networking opportunities and resources, focussed on the needs of these babies and infants, to all member organisations and through the inclusion of specific targets in the Women’s Aid’s Quality Assurance Mark.

2 years’ funding. Total grant over 2 years: £100,000

Breaking down Barriers



Breaking down Barriers: supporting and informing families and communities affected by genetic conditions, with a particular focus on autosomal recessive conditions

Breaking down Barriers is the Trust’s programme to enable organisations supporting families with genetic disorders, with a particular focus on autosomal recessive conditions, to reach out more effectively to those communities that are particularly at risk but currently underserved.

Alstom Syndrome UK, previously funded by the Trust for its work to reach more people from South Asian communities, is providing the management for Breaking down Barriers. This is initially a 5 year funded programme. The following patient organisations are currently members sharing experiences and expertise to improve their capacity to reach those communities at increased risk of inheriting genetic conditions:

  • AKU
  • Bardet Biedl Syndrome UK
  • Ehlers Danlos
  • Firvale Community Hub, Sheffield
  • Huntington’s Disease Association
  • Jnetics
  • Luton Parent Carers Forum
  • Niemann Pick UK
  • Sickle Cell Society
  • Wolfram Syndrome

Outcomes sought from this programme:

  • Increased awareness of cultural issues amongst patient organisations, support groups and medical professionals
  • Patient organisations and support groups, existing and new, better equipped to support diverse communities and those not able to express their needs directly
  • Improvements in services and practices that are fully integrated into patient organisations
  • Families reporting that they feel better supported
  • Educated patient groups who are better able to manage their condition effectively and lead a better quality of life
  • Empowered patient groups who know of the reproductive options available to them and the consequence of carrier status
  • Increased participation in genetic counselling and increased diagnosis
  • Improved general awareness of genetic conditions
  • Comprehensive guidelines produced to help break down the barriers experienced by families and which can be used throughout a range of different services

The long term aim of Breaking down Barriers is to see fewer children born with genetic disorders, in particular autosomal recessive conditions, in those families and communities most at risk. To help achieve this Breaking down Barriers seeks to include more patient organisations and a wider audience.

Application Process

If your organisation is interested in knowing more about Breaking down Barriers, and potentially being involved, please send an initial email of interest to You can find out more at

NB Because of the way this programme is being managed, the Trust is not accepting applications to fund separate initiatives in this area of concern.

Development work in Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda

A very limited amount of funding will be made available for development work in  Tanzania and Uganda. It will allocated to organisations and work that the Trust already supports.

Application process

No applications are currently being accepted.