20 September 2022, The Tablet

Small charities urged to apply for Charles Plater Trust grants

Small charities urged to apply for Charles Plater Trust grants

Vincentian volunteers work to help those they serve.
Courtesy of Vincentian Volunteers

The Charles Plater Trust has opened its small grants programme for 2022, calling for charities with “an imaginative proposal for social action, lay leadership or applied research project with a specific community or group” to apply.

Grants of up to £5,000 are available to small charities with an annual income of less than £100,000. This programme runs in parallel with the trust’s scheme for larger projects. The one-year grants “can be used to fund responses to local need in parishes, deprived communities or with marginalised groups”.

Philomena Cullen, the grants manager, said that the trust was “blown away by the work that the nine small charities we funded last year achieved with relatively modest amounts of money from us”.

Recipients of last year’s small grant awards included Catholics for AIDS Prevention and Support, a pastoral ministry for those living with HIV, and the Vincentian Volunteers, which runs gap-year programmes for young people to work with charities while living in community. 

Non-Catholic charities are also eligible, with grants going to Street Doctors, which trains first responders in South London to provide life-saving aid to victims of knife crime, and to the East Berkshire Down Syndrome Support Group to fund language therapy sessions.

“It is clear to us that there is an enormous amount of talent and determination at local levels that we want to continue to support and see flourish,” said Ms Cullen.

The Charles Plater Trust manages the endowment from the sale of the former Plater College in Oxford, which offered vocational courses to adult students until its closure in 2005.  The trust works to maintain the legacy of Charles Plater SJ, the pioneer of the early-twentieth-century Catholic Social Movement, “in developing social justice through education”.

The trust publishes its criteria for grant awards on its website, with an emphasis on the participation of beneficiaries in the design and delivery of projects.  The closing date for applications is 10 October, with decisions returned in late December and an awards ceremony in June next year, where recipients will present the results of their projects.

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