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Grant Guidance

Please read our grant guidance before making an application to ensure that your organisation and your project is eligible for Livewell Foundation funding.

If you have any questions after reading the guidance, please contact us on

The Livewell Foundation’s Application Guidance Criteria

Our Mission – “The Livewell Foundation supports projects and initiatives that will help improve health and wellbeing, prevent ill health or reduce social isolation within Plymouth and South West Devon”

Our Objective: People living happier and healthier lives.

We will fund small grants up to £1,000 and large grants up to £10,000 for projects or organisations that meet our funding criteria. 

Current funding priorities are for projects or initiatives that will:

  • Improve health and wellbeing
  • Reduce mental and physical ill health
  • Reduce social isolation

This could be for one or a combination of two or three of the above.

We can fund:

  • Staff salaries
  • Project activities
  • Running costs
  • Small-scale refurbishment
  • Equipment
  • Organisational development
  • Core costs (for registered charities only)

We can’t fund:

  • Proposals from organisations that are run primarily for private gain or to generate profits for private distribution, or any activities that generate profits for private gain
  • Religious activity (although we can fund religious organisations if their project benefits the wider community and doesn’t include religious content)
  • Activities that replace government funding
  • Activities that benefit individuals, rather than the wider community
  • Political activities
  • Retrospective costs
  • Loan repayments
  • Work that does not have a direct benefit on communities or individuals in Plymouth, South Hams or West Devon (We cover PL1-PL10 inclusive, PL16 and PL19 – PL21 inclusive, and TQ7, TQ8 and TQ10)
  • Academic Research, unless the applicant can demonstrate significant potential for practical outcomes
  • Work that is primarily the responsibility of statutory authorities
  • Core activities of organisations which are part of a national network of others doing similar work e.g. MIND, Age UK, Alzheimer’s Society
  • Organisations that cannot demonstrate financial governance
  • Projects that do not have a defined time period in which the beneficiaries will benefit
  • Contributions to general appeals or circulars;
  • Activities which solely support animal welfare;
  • Grant-making by other organisations.

How do I apply?

All applications must be made using the Livewell Foundation’s on-line application process.  This is available on our website at

A Word document is available if you cannot use the on-line application.  Please contact the office on 

If your financial accounts are not available on the charity commission website, please upload a copy of your latest set of accounts to your application.

As of June 2023, we will also now access applications via video format. 

Video application links must be submitted via the online application form.  You will be asked to complete some basic level of contact information first, before copying and pasting your video link.  When producing a video application, the following instructions are advised:

1. Videos must be no more than 5 minutes in duration

2. We would prefer videos to be saved on a platform such as You Tube (you can limit the audience to ‘private’) and a link to the video inserted into the online application form, however if this is not possible, please email

3. All video applications must include the following information:

  • The purpose of the grant you are requesting
  • The problem you are trying to solve
  • Your beneficiaries, the challenges they face and how you know
  • The resources required
  • The activities you plan to carry out
  • The amount that you are requesting
  • The outcomes you expect to achieve
  • How you with monitor the impact of your grant

Who can apply?

We make grants to a wide range of organisations. We are particularly keen to help grassroots community groups and small-to-medium-sized voluntary organisations. We do not normally make grants to large UK-wide charities, but we might do so where there are strong relationships in our area and the proposal has potential to achieve a substantial impact. 

You do not have to be a registered charity to apply, but the work you ask us to support must be legally charitable. However, please note that we can only make grants for general running costs or unrestricted purposes to registered charities. Grants to any other organisations will always be restricted for a specific charitable purpose.  

It is important to note that Community Interest Companies (CICs) and other social enterprises limited by guarantee are eligible to apply if they can evidence the following:

  • There is a clear charitable purpose and defined social benefit outlined in their Articles of Association
  • There are at least three unconnected Directors listed on Companies House
  • The project for which funding is requested must not be part of the trading services for which there would normally be a charge
  • All requested costs relate directly to the delivery of the project or work being applied for.  Where funding is requested that contributes towards a CIC Director’s payment or salary, it needs to be clear about how this relates specifically to the work or project being applied for.

You must have a governing document (constitution, rules, memorandum and articles of association etc.), a governing body of at least two unconnected individuals, and a bank account in your group’s name with at least two unconnected signatories. 

Please note if you have previously had a grant from us, we will not consider any new application unless you have sent us all the required grant reports.  This is normally 12 months after your award.  Please note however, this does not apply to small grants.

For large applications, if your last grant application was unsuccessful, please do not apply for a large grant for at least 12 months.

What are the reasons for applications being rejected?

Grant applications have been rejected in the past due to the following:

  • Low score against points framework (we score applications against the following criteria):
    • Whether the project or charitable activities reduce hospital admissions
    • If the project is linked to local/ regional health strategies e.g. 4;4;54 Thrive Plymouth
    • If the project is linked directly to supporting beneficiaries with a physical disability or mental health
    • Whether the project supports beneficiaries from a deprived location
    • Number of beneficiaries likely to be impacted
    • Whether the project supports beneficiaries with protected characteristics
    • Application has clear outcome measures linked to our strategic aims
    • Cost per beneficiary
  • No track record (this applies to large grant applicants only)
  • Insufficient number of board members (we expect to see at least two unconnected individuals on a board).
  • For-profit organisation
  • Inadequate monitoring and evaluation
  • Costing didn’t add up correctly
  • Asking for too much (either above our maximum award or in relation to their overall income)
  • Poorly written application – confusing, too little detail or too wordy
  • Safeguarding not in place
  • Accounts late submission on Charity Commission
  • Warning on Companies House
  • No financial statements received
  • No constitution documents received

We strongly recommend completing your grant application in word first before copying and pasting into the online application form.

When will I get a decision?

We open for applications for large grants once a year, normally during the Autumn.  We take up to twelve weeks to make a decision on large grants. Small grants can be applied for throughout the year and applications are reviewed at every trustee meeting once a quarter.  We will let you know if you have been awarded a grant or not. If we think your application might be suitable for a particular fund but this will take more than twelve weeks, we will contact you.

If you have any questions regarding the above or the application process, please contact us on and we will respond to your enquiry as soon as we can.