Frequently Asked Questions
What is the Dream Fund?
The Dream Fund has been developed to give charities the chance to deliver the project they have always dreamed of, but never had the opportunity to bring to life. The Dream Fund allows charities to apply for up to £1.5 million to deliver their ‘dream’ project over 24 to 36 months.
Applications must come from a collaboration of at least two organisations.
Who can apply for funding?
The lead partner of any application MUST be a registered charity. Partner organisations can be registered or non-registered charities, voluntary groups and community interest companies. The Dream Fund encourages collaboration between not-for-profit organisations, therefore all applications must come from at least two not-for-profit organisations that have joined forces to deliver their ‘dream’ project. We do NOT accept applications from councils, statutory bodies or local authorities, either as lead or partner organisations.
How much can our charity apply for?
Charities can apply for up to £1.5 million to deliver their Dream project. The minimum amount that can be applied for is £500,000.
How many times can our charity apply?
Charities are only able to submit one application each, either as a lead or as a partner. So if you have a few ideas you would like to apply for please take time to prioritise on the best one. You are welcome to contact the Dream Fund helpdesk at firstname.lastname@example.org to discuss potential applications and will be advised which one of your funding ideas stand the highest chance of being successful.
Can our charity apply for part funding?
Yes, the funds can be used alongside existing funds already raised, or any financial backing you may have already established (this can be from a commercial business, but please note that they cannot be a partner in the application process). However, please note that the amount you request must be no less than 25% of the total cost of the project. The total cost of the project can be over £1,500,000 as long as you do not request over this amount from the Dream Fund. We will also solely fund the entire project, so it will not hinder your application if you do not have any other funding in place.
What kind of projects does the Dream Fund support?
Successful projects have to engage the public, demonstrate an innovative approach and leave a long-standing legacy once the duration of funding has come to an end. All projects must have a clear charitable purpose with visible results after 24-36 months. Please read the Funded Project pages to see examples of previous Dream Fund winners.
What geographical areas does the Dream Fund support?
All projects need to take place within Great Britain and we welcome applications from all areas of England, Scotland and Wales. We do not accept applications for projects that will take place overseas or where the beneficiaries reside overseas.
Do you fund projects that will run outside of Great Britain?
No – the Dream Fund is 100% funded by players of People’s Postcode Lottery, and all funds must be re-invested into the local communities from which they originated.
How long should our project last?
Funding is available for projects of up to 24 to 36 months in length. Funding will be awarded to successful applicants in the second quarter of 2020 and projects should be ready to launch from this time.
Please note that we expect there to be a long term legacy from each project beyond the duration of funding. When we say that each project should be 24 to 36 months in length we mean the funding will need to be spent within this period and that there should always be a long term plan to see the project endure into the future.
When should our project run from and to?
Successful applicants will be awarded funds in the second quarter of 2020. Therefore projects should run until at least the second quarter of 2022. Please note we always expect there to be a significant long term legacy once the projects funds have been spent.
Why do applications have to come from more than one organisation?
The Dream Fund encourages charitable organisations to collaborate in using their skills, experiences and resources to develop original and impactful ways of challenging social and environmental problems. The partnership is a highly important element of your project and ensuring it as strong and diverse as possible is one of the best ways of ensuring you stand the highest chance of being successful.
Do applications have to come from a long-standing partnership?
The partners do not have to have a history together – you can come together specifically to deliver this project. However, we would advise that you do not come together purely to apply for funding, but instead ensure that there is a genuine benefit for your groups to collaborate. If your project is shortlisted to stage 2 of the application process, we will request that you draw up a written agreement between all organisations applying for the Dream Fund, regardless of whether you have worked together for years, or if this is the first venture between you. This will define which organisation is the lead organisation and how the funds will be managed should you be successful.
Who decides if our project receives funding?
Once submitted your application will be reviewed by the Dream Fund management team to ensure it is eligible and complete. The top 20 applications will then be shortlisted to the second stage where applicants will have to complete a more detailed online application form. Following this stage, a final shortlist of applicants will be invited to meet an assessment panel to discuss the proposal in person. After this presentation process, the assessment panel will make their decision on the successful applications. All decisions are final.
Do I have to provide supporting documents?
At stage 1 applicants are not required to provide any supporting documents. However for the projects that proceed through to stage 2, applicants must provide accounts, constitutions, quotes for expenditure and a signed partnership agreement.
What costs can I apply for?
Costs directly linked with the project are eligible for funding, including ongoing staff costs, utility bills, rent and insurance etc. Capital costs are eligible for funding. Costs relating to PR, website development and communications are also eligible for funding.
What should my video contain?
As part of your application form you will be asked to provide a link to a video relevant to your project. This is a great opportunity for you to really sell your idea to the people reviewing your application. This does not need to be a professionally produced film, and can simply be filmed on a smart phone or camera, and uploaded to a video hosting site. Please aim to make the video less than 5 minutes in length.
The video is a chance to pitch your project. It should explain what the project is, why it is distinctive and unique, and why it deserves to win funding from the Dream Fund.
The best submissions will highlight the problem you are trying to solve, the impact that the project will have and how it links to our areas of priority (if applicable). It is also a good opportunity to work together with your partner(s) and ensure you are all aligned on the project.