Are you eligible?

Please ensure you meet the following criteria before making an application and read our FAQs:

  • You must be a charity registered in Scotland
  • You must be working with young children (pre-birth to 3) and their parents/carers
  • The main beneficiaries have a background of relative deprivation: this ranges from poverty to additional support needs to lack of opportunity due to lack of services
  • Children and their carers have to be actively involved in the proposed activity or service

Families experiencing deprivation or in crisis will be given priority. “Deprivation” can mean low income, poor housing, unemployment, isolation, disability or health problems, lack of family support, young parenthood, contact with the justice system, substance abuse, violence etc.

Cattanach is particularly interested in parenting, attachment, family support, and communication within the family, as it impacts on the healthy emotional and physical development of young children. The SCIO wishes to encourage training for staff and volunteers, and may recommend training or evaluation help.

Make an Enquiry

To make sure we are the right fit for your organisation we would love to have an informal chat with you before you begin the proposal process. Please get in touch to schedule a suitable date and time for one of our team to give you a call.

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Upcoming Funding Round

Q4 2023 Timeline

* We are not accepting any more proposals in this funding round. 

1. Information Sessions

This is an opportunity to hear from us about possible funding.

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2. Registering on our Grants System

Your organisation must register on our Grants System to submit a funding proposal. You then need to submit a brief project overview. When this is approved, you can then start your proposal.

Register here

3. Discussing your proposal

We will arrange a visit to see the proposed work being delivered. We will contact you once you have started your proposal to arrange a visit. You must have a full draft proposal (including supporting documents) ready on the system seven days before your visit.

4. Q4 2023 Deadline - 27th October

After we have visited and received feedback, you must submit your final proposal and supporting documents via the Grants Management System.

5. Board Meeting - 6th December

Our board will meet on the 6th of December to make final funding decisions.

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Submitting a Proposal

As detailed above, if we have agreed after an initial conversation that Cattanach is the right fit for you and your project is eligible for our main grant funding, then you will be invited to submit a proposal via our Grants System.

Already started a proposal?

Preparing your information

We want you to tell us about your organisation and your beneficiaries, the work you are doing and hope to do, your plans to carry that out and how you use monitoring and evaluation tools to learn and develop. It’s important that your proposal will be able to demonstrate the following:

  • You understand the needs of young children.
  • You know your community well – the children, their families, their world, and in particular strengths and what you need to support them to reach their full potential.
  • You know about other services in the area and can explain why your work is needed and does not duplicate other work.
  • Identify three outcomes for your work and explain how you will monitor and measure progress towards your goals and learn from your experiences.
  • Specify how your outcomes align to our strategic outcomes: strengthen attachment, build resilience, support prevention.

After you have submitted your proposal

The proposal is reviewed by the Grants Committee and then by the Board of Trustees. This happens four times a year, around Feb, May, Aug, Nov. Details for the next funding round are shown at the top of this page.

We will notify you of the outcome. If you have been successful, we’ll keep in touch at regular intervals for the duration of the grant to see how you are getting on and offer support.

If your proposal is not successful we will discuss other sources of help and support with you. Alongside our main grants we offer a range of Funder Plus opportunities.

Proposal FAQs

You will understand the needs of young children. You will show us that you know your community well – the children, their families their world, and in particular strengths and what you need to support them to reach their full potential. You will know about other services in the area and you will tell us why your work is needed and does not duplicate other work. You will tell us how you set a baseline, so that you can measure the effect of your work. You will be expected to set SMART outcomes and targets - they are specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and timely.

Grants are usually between £3,000 and £25,000 a year although the majority of proposals and awards are in the region of £10,000 per annum. We will be supportive of match funding within project budgets. You are welcome to speak with us prior to submitting a proposal.

Larger charities with multiple projects or those charities which are an affiliated group, with more than one eligible project, may submit proposals for more than one grant in a 12-month period. In such instances, such organisations can be considered for a total grant award – across one or more projects – of up to a maximum 10% of our annual grant funding. Applications which exceeded such values would only be considered in exceptional circumstances and we would ask organisations to contact us prior to submitting such a proposal. Trustees will take into account the geographical location of the projects, the capacity of the organisation, the previous record of reporting and achievement, and the closeness of the fit to the SCIO's priorities.

Those submitting a proposal can initially request a one-, two- or three-year grant. Payment of the second and subsequent installments of multi-year grants will be subject to receipt by Cattanach of satisfactory progress reports. At the end of the grant, organisations may submit a proposal to continue funding their project. When projects reach years 4 and 5 of funding – the maximum term – any offer would be tapered, so they can make a request for 50% of their initial budget in year 4 and 25% in year 5, with identified matched funders for the balance. By mutual agreement, a tapered offer could be made earlier, in years 2 and 3.

There are instances where current grant holders seek to fund a new project, either on expiry of their grant or before, in which case their budget could commence from Year 1 and would not need to be tapered.

Grants may be for project funding, or for core funding including salaries and general running costs in smaller organisations. We prefer to fund revenue costs and a grant towards a capital project will usually only be associated with staff costs or some other aspect of revenue funding. Cattanach prefers to make a grant which is a sizeable contribution to a project and so is unlikely to make a small grant towards a very large project.

We consider the work we fund to be valuable to families and therefore recommend that any wages funded by us are paid at or above the Living Wage. However you can still submit a proposal for a grant if this is not the case: we would seek to better understand your situation when we speak to you.

Individuals, personal study or travel, hospices and palliative care (unless focused on attachment related activities), animal charities, appliances for illness or disability, organisations concerned with specific diseases, large capital projects (more than £100,000), crèches where parents are not involved, organisations or activities where religious content is compulsory for users, baby and toddler clothes/equipment banks, general appeals.

Trustees meet 4 times a year, usually in February, May, August and November, and the meeting dates are on this website. We will provide guidance about when the Trustees will consider your request. Please allow at least 8 weeks before a Trustee meeting and contact us for further information.

We receive more viable proposals than it can fund, and even if the proposal falls within the criteria, Cattanach may not be able to help. We will work with you to signpost you to other sources of help wherever we can.

The proposal form includes a checklist of documents which you must upload with your proposal or post to us:

  • Your most recent full annual accounts and report, audited or independently examined and signed. If the accounts date from more than 12 months before the date of the proposal, the Manager may request draft annual accounts, management accounts or a note of the up-to-date income, expenditure and reserves.
  • A simple budget for the project, or for the organisation if you are submitting a proposal for core costs. Please include NI and pension costs for staff in your budget, if applicable.
  • If you are a new organisation and do not yet have annual accounts, you must send a copy of a recent bank statement and a list of the management committee names and addresses.

You do not need to send a paper copy of your proposal, and please do not send management accounts, job descriptions, business plans, photos or other extra documents unless we ask for them.