Plant A Tree Today Foundation – Grant Making Policy

FINAL Agreed Feb 2018

1. Charitable purpose and objective 

1.1. The trustees apply the funds of PATT at their discretion and in accordance with the charitable purposes and objectives of the charity. 

1.2. Any trustee can consider a grant and make recommendations in accordance with the charitable purposes and objectives. Any decision whether to award a grant remains solely the responsibility of the trustees. Any grant must be circulated and agreed by a majority of trustees before it is sent.

2. Principles applied in determining support. 

In awarding grants, the trustees will apply the following principles; 

2.1. The trustees will consider any requests that relate to its primary charitable purpose.

2.2. Each request or situation will be considered on its own merits. Where situations have been previously considered (whether successful or not) any due diligence undertaken to reach an earlier decision will be made available to the trustees. 

2.3. The trustees will carry out sufficient due diligence to ensure that the request or situation meets the charitable purposes. 

2.4. The trustees are content to work in partnership with other grant making bodies where funding of an entire project is beyond the scope of any single organisation. 

3. Applicant and partner due diligence 

3.1. The trustees will carry out sufficient due diligence on any potential beneficiary to ensure: 

  • The identity of the beneficiary; 
  • That funds are applied in accordance with the charity’s charitable purpose;
  • That there are appropriate safeguarding policies in place;
  • That funds are not knowingly used for:
    • o Money laundering in accordance with the operative Money Laundering regulations
    • o Terrorist financing in accordance with the Terrorist Act 2000;
    • o Bribery in accordance with the 2010 Bribery Act. 

3.2. In cases where the charity is not the only supporter of the work or project, and to protect its reputation, the trustees may choose to extend any due diligence beyond the proposed beneficiary and to include other partner supporting organisations. 

3.3. The trustees will adopt an informal risk rated approach to due diligence. Risk factors will include; the size of the grant; the country of residence of the proposed recipient; the geographical location in which the grant will be applied; the nature of the relationship between the charity and the applicant. 

3.4. Grant size will be an important risk factor and the larger the grant the greater will be the likely level of due diligence undertaken. 

3.5. Where the proposed beneficiary is well known to the trustees and the relationship has been long standing and well established, the amount of due diligence undertaken is likely to be reduced. 

3.6. The results of any due diligence will not last indefinitely. In cases where beneficiaries are supported for a significant period of time, additional due diligence will be undertaken on a change of circumstances that might impact the beneficiary. 

4. Administration 

4.1. Where specific needs or situations are known, grants may be made at the discretion of the trustees without any form of request. 

4.2. For larger grants, trustees should be confident: 

  • Of the purpose of the proposed grant including an understanding of the work and the way in which the grant will be managed and applied; 
  • Of the person(s) responsible for the management of the grant and for overseeing the work;
  • That all local applicable laws and working practices associated with the work are fully and properly applied;
  • That suitable safeguarding policies are in place in cases where the applicant works with children or vulnerable adults. 

4.3. For very large grants, the trustees would expect a written report (on request) setting out the progress and achievements for the period covered against budget and detailing any forthcoming changes to either the nature or the location of ongoing work. This is in addition to the requirements set out in 4.2. Such documentation could include a progress certificate of works done.

4.4. With the agreement of the charity and the beneficiary, grants will be provided by means of an electronic banking transfer. The charity’s normal payment authorisation process will be applied to any payments. 

4.5. Where the grant is for a specified project or purpose, and in situations where that purpose does not proceed or where any grant or part thereof remains unused, unused funds must be returned or on agreement of all Trustees allocated to other institution needs. 

4.6. Where formal written applications have been received, or other records maintained, these will be stored and subsequently disposed of in accordance with prevailing Data Protection legislation. 

4.7 Evidence is required that any grants are used for the purpose for which they are given. The precise nature will vary but could include signature, photographic evidence, or a written report. In addition, trustees may also choose to visit schemes to witness the use of grants.

5. Decision making 

5.1. The decision of the trustees on whether to award a grant is final. 

5.2. The trustees are not obliged to provide an explanation to applicants in the event that their application is not successful.