Small Grants Fund

The Small Grants Fund is now closed and will reopen for applications from Monday 1 April 2019.

We understand that sometimes the smallest changes can make the biggest difference to a patient’s time in hospital, be it a more relaxing waiting area, better equipment, activities to improve wellbeing or better access to information. The Small Grants Fund provides funding for bright ideas to support staff in improving the patient experience across the Trust’s five hospitals.

Trust staff can apply for projects to improve patient care in their ward, department or across the Trust, and towards staff amenities where appropriate.

We encourage applications of up to £5,000 per project to support as many teams and departments as possible. For grant requests above £5,000, you must first contact the grants team to discuss your project prior to starting your online application. 

From January 2019 applicants must first submit a pre-application form before applying for a Small Grants Fund. This will enable the grants team to properly advise applicants.

Please complete and email the pre-application form to

How to Apply

Applications must be submitted via our online grants management system, Flexigrant. We do not accept hard-copy applications. Please click here to access the online application form.

Application Timeframe

You can apply at any time between 1 April and 28 February each year.

As the Small Grants Fund is competitive, funding requests below £2,000 are usually assessed within two weeks of submission.

Funding requests above £2,000 are decided quarterly.

Application deadline (third Friday of the following months):

May - decision meeting mid-June; applicants notified by end of June

August - decision meeting mid-September; applicants notified end of September

November - decision meeting mid-December; applicants notified early January

February - decision meeting mid-March; applicants notified end of March.

How much can I apply for?

Funding of up to £5,000 is available.

In certain circumstances we will consider applications up to £10,000 where this is a demonstrable benefit to a significant number of Trust staff and patients (e.g. patient day room/clinic refurbishment).

Please note applications up to the value of £10,000 need to be discussed with the grants team prior to starting an application online. Please complete and email the pre-application form to:

  • Applications can only be submitted by members of staff at Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust.
  • Applications must clearly demonstrate how the funds will improve patient care, services, experience or staff amenities.
  • Before applying to the charity, applicants must first investigate funding opportunities from their divisional/departmental budget or the Fund Adviser Special Purpose Funds (FA SPF).
  • FA SPFs are managed by designated Trust staff members, each with a specific purpose to support a particular ward, department, area of research, service or group of patients. 
  • Projects involving capital works (e.g. kitchen areas, flooring, clinic refurbishments) must obtain an e-mandate and an up-to-date quote before submitting an application. The quote must be less than three months when you submit an application and still be valid if you are awarded a grant.
  • Applicants must obtain approval from their line manager.
  • An area (e.g. a clinic, ward, unit or team) can only receive a maximum of £10,000 per financial year. Priority will be given to first-time applicants.
  • If successful, applicants will be required to submit an End of Grant report.
Projects/items we can support
  • Day room/clinic refurbishments
  • Staffroom refurbishments
  • Equipment that will significantly improve patient experience, is innovative and creates a step change will be considered on a case by case basis
  • Organising events/conferences will be considered on a case-by-case basis, provided the project will have a demonstrable benefit to a significant number of patients and/or staff.

This list is not exhaustive. 

Projects/items we cannot support
  • Any item or project that should receive core funding from departmental budgets
  • Any item or project that could be funded by a Fund Adviser Special Purpose Fund
  • Any item or project that has already been purchased/delivered (no retrospective funding)
  • Replacement of equipment that is new for old
  • General staff hospitality (e.g. socials, staff rewards, meeting or travel expenses)
  • Payments to individuals
  • Research projects
  • Any piloting/testing/implementation projects relating to Quality Improvement ideas. Separate funding is available for these projects via the charity’s previous contribution to the QI Hub (please contact in the first instance)
  • Conference attendance
  • Training course fees
  • Top-up costs of fellowships or for any post-graduate studies.
Grant award length

The grant is awarded for a maximum period of 12 months.

Reporting requirements

An End of Grant report is required one month after the end of the funding period. For some projects, the charity may require a progress report as well.

Financial information

Successful applicants must not start their project/incur any costs until they have received the grant award letter. The charity will not pay for any costs incurred retrospectively.

The grant holder must inform the relevant Trust finance department of the grant awarded before making any purchases through their department. The Trust will then invoice the charity, quoting the grant reference number.

Payments can be made quarterly and will be in arrears.

The grant holder must submit any outstanding/final invoice within six months of the grant expiry date. Any grant underspend will remain with the charity and the grant holder will be informed beforehand.

Pre-application/further information

Please complete the pre-application form in the first instance. For any other enquiry, please contact the charity's grants team by email at or call 020 3857 9844.