Since its inception in 1996 over £1million in Partnership Funding grants has been provided each year to community groups and voluntary/third sector organisations operating in East Lothian. These organisations have made a significant and positive contribution to the vibrancy, resilience and wellbeing of East Lothian’s communities and promoted partnership working.

As we continue to respond to the challenges of the global COVID-19 pandemic, the focus of the funding awards for 2022/23 will be on supporting initiatives and activities which will help to mitigate the adverse impacts of COVID19.  Due to ongoing concerns about the climate emergency, applications are also invited which will address this issue while also contributing to reducing inequalities. Applicants seeking grant funding for 2022/23 will be required to address at least one of the following themes: 

  • young people/youth work
  • social isolation/befriending 
  • supporting volunteering 
  • tackling climate change

What funding is available?

We are keen to build on the success of Partnerships Grants to ensure grants are aligned with the strategic outcomes of the Council Plan and the East Lothian Partnership’s community planning priorities.

The application form highlights the need for applicants to demonstrate how a funding award will address these priorities

Who can apply?

Organisations which can apply include community groups, charities and social enterprises. All organisations applying for partnership funding must be formally constituted bodies and must have a bank account.

How long is funding available for?

Most grants will be awarded for one year. In some cases partner organisations will be able to apply for funding for up to three years, if they are delivering services in partnership with the Council under a service level agreement (SLA). This will give these organisations the opportunity to plan how best to sustain their projects and help source external funding where appropriate, to build on the investment provided by the council with a view to enhancing self-sustainability and less or no reliance on the One Council Partnership Fund in future years.

What can grants be used for?

Grant funding can be used for a range of initiatives, including start-up costs.

Some larger grants may be awarded on a three year basis where an agreed service level agreement (SLA) is put in place between the partner organisation and the council.

The One Council Partnership Fund is not a source of funding for capital projects. Information about capital grant funding, the Community Intervention Fund, can be found on our website

Grants will not be awarded to support commercial events.

What do applicants need to provide?

Applicants must clearly demonstrate how their proposal will contribute to East Lothian’s Local Outcome Improvement Plan (LOIP) and the Council Plan and of prime importance, reducing inequalities.

As a condition of grant funding, applicants will be required to submit an end of year project report to evidence the positive impact of the funding. Applicants will be asked to demonstrate which other sources of funding they have applied for, before approaching East Lothian Council for One Council Partnership funding.

Information on a range of funding sources can be found on our funding homepage.

How can applications be made?

Download an application form

Any enquiries should be emailed to partnershipfunding@eastlothian.gov.uk.

In due course, this will be converted to an online application which will be accessed via this website. This will make it easier for applicants to complete and supports the aims of the council’s Digital Strategy. Information will be made available on the website, with details of the timescales for making applications.

When can we apply for funding?

Organisations seeking One Council Partnership Funding in 2022/23 should submit their application by 30 November 2021.

Applications will be considered and assessed to ensure compliance with the criteria. Applicants will be notified if their application has been successful by late February/early March 2022.

Partners may only apply for funding once in any financial year.

How will applications be assessed?

Appropriate ‘sponsor’ services within the council will be asked to provide confirmation that they agree with and are supportive of the funding application and the stated outcomes. The relevant Service Managers will be asked to provide their specialist insight and confirm if the proposed project seeking funding complements existing provision and does not duplicate either existing service delivery or funding, to support the One Council approach.

How will a Partner in receipt of funds be monitored?

The Head of Communities and Partnerships, in approving a funding application, will identify the most appropriate service e.g. Active Schools, Children’s Services, to be remitted to monitor the operation of each Partner to ensure funds are used appropriately in the course of the financial year or the term of the service level agreement in the case of larger funding awards.

All Partners awarded funds will be required to provide an annual report on the use of the funds awarded and the achievement of the outcomes contained within their original application.