Learning & Collaboration Fund FAQ’s and Reflections from Year 1


  • Am I right in understanding that if the lead charity turnover is less than £40k then only 25% match funding is required? 

Yes – that is correct.   

  • Can in-kind contributions count as match funding?  

Yes – guidance notes state at discretion of network of networks 

  • Can in-kind contributions such as premises cost contribute towards match funding? 

Yes, consider a balance of in-kind support and cash match funding in the application. 

  • My community group are thinking of collaborating with a CIC whose turnover is over £40K. Where does this leave us in regard to the fund/match funding? 

When one organisation has a turnover of 40K or more, then the turnover will be averaged across all collaborating organisations – see Example 


Example 1 – turnover 

Large organisation £60 000 

Community group 1 £25 000 

Community group 2 £2 000 

Total £87 000 divided by 3 collaborators = £29 000  

Required match funding 25% 


Example 2 – turnover 

Large organisation £200 000 

Community group 1 £2000 

Community group 2 £10 000 

Community group 3 £25 000 

Total £237 000. divided by 4 collaborators = £59 250 

Required match funding 100% 


  • What can and cannot be funded e.g. can funds be used for engagement sessional work? 

To encourage creativity, we have not yet developed a list of what can and cannot be funded.  Funding for sessional work can be included in the application, when the sessional work enables collaborators to develop and continue learning together.  Also consider how you create an environment where learning and collaboration between participants at the sessions can be supported and nurtured. 


Reflections from Round 1 


Relationships take time to develop, and that rushed relationship forming may not lead to a strong collaboration. 

Successful applications show evidence of real nurtured collaborations, with a shared understanding of each other and the commitment to the value of learning together. 

Strong applications capture meaningful collaboration between partners and demonstrate how the project or activity creates space for further collaboration between those participating in the project or activity.   

Learning through doing: if you are applying for funding to repeat a project you have already tried, it is essential you show how things will be different, how new partners in the collaboration will bring difference to the project.  How the planning and delivery of the project will encourage, support and stimulate collaboration in the participants. 

It is useful to take time to consider how to bring partners together, to explore ideas and gain an understanding of each other and different perspectives.  

 Consider what your organisation can do, to allow time for relationships to begin, build and develop, what is happening to encourage new relationships outside of the usual networks? 

 Everyone has different starting points, the journey may not be linear, what can be put in place along the path to nurture relationships and discover more about how we can work together through shared learning.