The England Athletics’ Club Improvement Fund is a new fund for 2022 and aims to support affiliated clubs to provide safe, sustainable, and welcoming environments for their athletes and runners.
With the Commonwealth Games coming to Birmingham in 2022 we want to mark the inspiring summer ahead for athletics and running with this small grants programme aimed specifically at our member clubs. As clubs look to capitalise on the inspiration from a home Games this fund will help them offer a more welcoming and positive experience for their members and connect with local communities to leave a lasting positive impact.
Through one single application window opening on 19 May and closing on 14 July, we will provide small grants up to a maximum of £500 to affiliated clubs looking to improve and enhance their club environment. For further information or to discuss an application please email firstname.lastname@example.org
Grants will be awarded to support the following priorities:
- Improved member experience – projects that make clubs safer and more welcoming for their members
- Rewarding and celebrating volunteers – projects that focus on volunteer recruitment and retention
- Sustainable clubs – projects that aim to increase club membership through recruitment and / or retention of athletes and runners
- Innovation and Inclusion – projects focussing on inclusion or innovation connected to Club Standards
Application and process guidance
Applications will be assessed during the end of July/early August with formal grant offers made towards the end of August.
Please note: This is the only funding window for the Club Improvement Fund for 22-23.
How much funding can I apply for?
- We will award small grants of up to £500
We are looking to support new projects that you are thinking of delivering or new operational processes that you want to set up.
To make the application process more straight forward below are examples of projects we may consider funding:
- Coach & Officials education and development – this could include support towards the cost of formal qualifications and training with an aim of recruiting and retaining the coaching ‘workforce’ at your club. It could also focus on more informal developmental opportunities for coaches and cover items such as travel costs for them to work with another coach as part of their own personal development
- Reward and recognition for volunteers – retaining and developing your volunteers will be a key area that clubs need to focus on. Reward and recognition in an area you may need to access funding for i.e., kit / IT equipment / prizes at awards evenings
- Costs associated with celebration events or promotional activity in the lead up to, or post Commonwealth Games – this could be social activity for your current members or events targeting recruiting new members from the local community or local schools
- Marketing and promotion for your club – this could be to enhance the internal communication channels to your current members or to raise your profile to potential new members in your local community
- Small equipment purchases – ensuring your members are able to access the correct equipment is key. You may wish to access funding to ensure the quality and quantity of training equipment available to your members meet their current and future needs
- We are always keen to hear about and support projects you may be thinking about that are particularly innovative in nature or focus on inclusion & diversity
Application process and criteria
We want the application process to be as straight forward as possible. We also want this fund to have as much impact on athletics and running as possible, and we want to be able to support you where we can to deliver the outcomes of your project.
The key criteria you need to comply with are:
- The application needs to be made by an England Athletics affiliated club.
- The application needs to demonstrate how the funding will enhance the club environment and have a positive impact on registered England Athletics members and / or potential new members.
- The application needs to focus on sustaining or growing your membership.
- We need to see exactly how much funding is required and what it will be spent on.
- You will need to already be complying with our Club Standards, or working with your Club Support Manager to comply with Club Standards if you are not yet compliant. Your application should clearly demonstrate how the funding will enhance Club Standards for your club.
- Clubs will need to contribute to at least 50% of the project funding.
- You will need to demonstrate how the funding will be spent within 6 months of any award being made.
- Commonwealth Games ticket costs will not be reimbursed as part of any project.