As a community-based group, local businesses will be very keen to support you. We have templates you can use in the resources section to help you request funding through different types of schemes. Here are some of the ways you can approach them:

Most supermarkets have a local giving scheme in place. Some examples of the major high street stores are:

 

Waitrose Local Community Matters Ask for form in local store, complete & hand in – up to £1k
John Lewis Local Community Matters Ask for form in local store, complete & hand in – up to £3k
Sainsburys Local Charity of the Year Ask for form in local store, complete & hand in – apply Jan-May latest
B&Q Local charity support Ask directly in local store
Asda Green Token Giving Apply instore or online at your local store to the Community Champion
Tesco Bags of Help scheme – focus on developing green space projects Find out more information and apply online

 

Sponsorship

Some local businesses may be keen to provide you with a sponsorship deal locally, whereby you help advertise them to your local members and they provide you with an annual amount or sponsor an event or item of publicity for you, such as your newsletter. Examples of local businesses that may align with local schemes may be: estate agents, local security firms, solicitors, garden centres, etc. Be clear what you would like from them and what you can offer prior to approaching them. Find out the details of the best person to contact and send them a letter, followed a day or two later by a phone call, with the aim to set up a face-to-face meeting. Please be mindful of contacting any companies on a national level, any companies that may be in direct competition with our current sponsors or any companies who’s practices may conflict with our ethical operating policies. If you are unsure about anything, please contact our Head of Fundraising at amy.mawby@ourwatch.org.uk.

 

Gifts in-kind

Local business can also help by offering non-financial support for free that has value to your scheme. Examples may be: printing, professional advice, venue hire, meeting refreshments (especially Sainsburys and Coop) or volunteer hours. Create a list of all the things you need to keep your scheme or project running and then approach the relevant businesses with a clear ask.

Matched funding

Many companies offer matched funding which can take two forms. The first is that if you have received funding for a portion of your scheme or project costs, a local business may be willing to provide the other portion. The second type of matched funding is companies matching the volunteer or fundraising efforts of their employees. For example, Morrisons will donate the same amount of money that their employee fundraises for a specific charity (conditions apply). Ask your fellow members if they work for any companies that do this and if so, ask them to approach their employer to find out the process.