Before submitting a grant application, please ensure that your project meets the following eligibility criteria:

UK Applications

The Trustees will consider applications from charities, not-for-profits and Community Interest Companies for projects which:


1.    Meet the aims of the Foundation 


2.    Benefit people living in Northern England and the other counties shown on this map:

Counties: Cheshire, Cumbria, Derbyshire, Durham, Greater Manchester, Lancashire, Lincolnshire, Merseyside, Northumberland (inc Tyne & Wear), Nottinghamshire, Yorkshire.

Organisations with projects in other areas of England and the UK may still apply, but only if their project falls into one or more of the following categories:

  • Your project is unique in the UK
    Particularly if it may lead to benefits for communities in the North of England at a later date
  • Your project involves advocacy / policy work
    And will therefore benefit people across the UK
  • Your project affects people in the UK prison system
    And therefore those benefiting may be from all over the UK

If you still have questions regarding your eligibility, you may contact the Administrator for further advice.

Overseas Applications

International applicants must have a UK office and be registered with the Charity Commission for England and Wales - we do not offer direct support to overseas charities.

We will prioritise applications which:

  1. Promote tolerance and equality for women
  2. Combat human rights violations


Previously unsuccessful applicants:

  • If you have unsuccessfully applied on more than one occasion, we do not recommend that you submit a further application.
  • If you have been unsuccessful once in applying to ECF, you may reapply after 12 months in the next appropriate round

What we don't support (please read: this applies to both UK and Overseas projects)

  • Building work or repairs
  • Political activities and purpose
  • Animal welfare
  • Academic research
  • Medical research
  • Microfinance projects (unless the beneficiaries themselves control the finances/repayments)
  • Individuals / gap year students  
  • Holiday club providers
  • Flight costs

Religious organisations / religious or evangelical causes:

The Trustees will not consider applications:

  • For projects that promote or evangelise any particular faith
  • From organisations whose goals include the promotion of their faith
  • From organisations who discriminate internally or externally based on faith

The Trustees will consider applications from organisations that grew from a religious basis but now have a multi-faith and secular approach. Organisations must not discriminate on the grounds of faith. Trustees, staff, volunteers and beneficiaries should not be required to be of any particular faith. Organisations should work with people of all faiths as well as those with no faith. 

If you still have questions about your eligibility, please contact the Administrator.