Grants between Counties, Districts and Groups
Advice for Counties and Districts who want to provide financial support to their groups, and how groups can make a case for support.
There are a number of Districts and Counties up and down the UK who, through hard work and careful financial management, have built up healthy reserves, and in many cases more money than they will use as part of their day to day operation for a long time. We've produced this guidance so that Districts and Counties can start to think about if and how they can provide direct financial support to Groups.
Can this be done?
It has been a commonly held view within scouting that Groups, Districts and Counties cannot transfer money to one another, however, a charity can in fact grant fund another charity as a way of meeting its charitable purposes, providing that it is in your charity’s best interest. That means a District or County could, if it was able to (and it was the right thing to do) step in to support a Group if it was struggling financially. It would be down to the Trustees (Executive) of the District and County to choose to offer this support, but in principle it is possible.
Who the guidance is for
We have created this guidance, with help from our colleagues in the Scout Grants Committee and Counties who provide certain grants, to help those who have the financial means to help others consider some of the key issues, and to help Groups who need support think about how to ask in the most appropriate way. This guidance applies to Districts and Counties providing support to Groups within their District or County. The following guidance is written with Districts in mind, but adjust this to suit your circumstances.
Following the guidance
As with any other element of charity governance, you must ensure that at all times you're following the guidance for Trustees from the Charity Commission, and from the Scouts. Everything you decide should be clearly recorded in the minutes of your Executive Committee, and decisions such as what you are prepared to fund, what your criteria or limits are, how to apply, who to speak to and so on should be clearly available to your members, through your website and regularly sent to your Groups.
If you're a group who needs help, start with our guide on how to ask for help locally, this will help you think through the support your group needs. If you're a District or County considering making grants available, start with our guide on thinking about providing grants, and then if you decide to go ahead, move onto our last guide, how to make it happen.