Guest piece by Get Grants Ltd

The British Science Association's grant programmes can help fund events for British Science Week but if you’re not successful, or when this fund is not open,  where else can you apply for funding? Read on to find out more.

Thinking more widely about what your project will achieve for the people and places involved is not only a good way to design and deliver a successful project, but also a good way to help access grants for it. Your project may fit the criteria for a much a wider range of funding programmes than you first imagine. We recommend thinking widely about what your science project will achieve. For example, will your project provide opportunities for people with a particular need? Will your project help people learn new life skills, raise their confidence, or help them be more active in their community or with their peers?

Finding the right funding opportunities can be a bit of a guessing game. The following guidance is designed to point you in the right direction.

Science and STEM Grants

If science is the core focus and outcome of your project, there are a number of grant funding programmes that specifically fund science and STEM projects:

Registered charities and schools are eligible to apply to the Ironmongers’ Foundation STEM Project Grants which looks to support initiatives that encourage talented young people to study science subjects at school with preference towards urban areas outside of London.

British Ecological Society Outreach Grants provides grants up to £2,000 to actively promote and engage non-academic audiences with ecological science. This fund is open to researchers, schools, museums, libraries and community groups and has a number of deadlines throughout the year.

You can also apply to the Royal Society of Chemistry Outreach Fund for grants of up to £10,000 to run chemistry-based community and schools engagement activities.

Education Grants

As you think more widely about what your project aims to achieve, there is a likelihood your science project will also have more general learning and education outcomes. There are many funders who fund ‘education’ projects often with quite a broad definition.

The Garfield Weston Foundation is a large grant giving charity (awarding over £69 million last year) which places priority on education. Registered Charities, CIOs, and Educational Establishments are eligible to apply.

Ford Britain Trust often fund projects focusing on education as well as ones related to the environment, children, disabilities and youth activities. Projects need to provide clear benefits to communities close to their UK locations.

Registered Charities and Special Schools can apply for Learning grants under The Foyle Foundation’s Main Grants Scheme. Main Grants are between £10,000 and £50,000 and can be used for projects and activities which increase access and widen the diversity of attenders/visitors for libraries, museums and archives.

Alternatively small registered charities with an income of under £150,000 can apply for grants of up to £10,000 from their Small Grants Scheme.

Community Grants

Some of the most straightforward sources of funding that offer relatively high chances of success are looking to fund projects that engage with communities on a local or grassroots level. Many community projects use science as a way to engage and benefit specific people and places.

National Lottery’s Awards for All programme offers grants of up to £10,000 through an accessible application process with clear priorities for what it wants to see funded; bringing people together and building strong relationships in and across communities; improving the places and spaces that matter to communities; and enabling more people to fulfil their potential by working to address issues at the earliest possible stage.

We advise looking to your local area for potential funders – many big businesses have funding programmes that like to fund projects taking place within proximity to their sites. For example, Tesco Bags of Help is a great fund that is open to any constituted group offering grants up to £4,000, as well as Greggs Foundation Local Community Projects Fund offering grants up to £2,000.

The funds you can apply to will depend on the background of your organisation, your legal structure, your size, and your overall aims. A key way to find suitable grant funding programmes is to make use of online search engines such as Funding Central as well as other online resources such as our funding blog. Get Grants also provide regular updates and advice on grant programmes and upcoming deadlines in our newsletter and social media.

About the Author

This article is written by Get Grants Ltd, a consultancy that provides a range of support services to charities and not-for-profit organisations seeking grant funds. Included in these services are a range of Bid Writing training courses, a free monthly newsletter and a blog of information on grant sources.

For more information on Get Grants visit