Guidance to Applicants for Funding

Each year Highland Cross receives requests for assistance that total more than it can support  Therefore after great consideration it is clarifying its grant giving preferences.


Highland Cross wishes to concentrate its funding on charities and incorporated organisations, regulated by the Office of the Scottish Charity Regulator that seek to work for the benefit of the people of Highland who are disadvantaged through medical or social causes.


Highland Cross regards “Highland” as being the geographical area administered by Highland Council.


Highland Cross will only fund capital items. Highland Cross will not consider applications for revenue costs such as running costs, expenses or staff costs.


National charities are welcome to apply to Highland Cross for funding for capital items for projects that are of direct benefit to people of Highland.  However the panel will wish to examine why the funding is required where a charity has a major national fundraising operation. They will also require assurances that the assets will continue to be applied to the benefit of people of Highland for the foreseeable future and that there is a sustainable plan for their use in Highland should the national charity cease operations in Highland.


Highland Cross will show preference to those charities who are the end user of the item(s) being funded.


Highland Cross will show less preference for charities who are raising funds for an item e.g. vehicle or building where that will be handed over to a third party that is not a charity especially if the third party is a statutory body.


Highland Cross will not fund minibuses or other vehicles for local authority schools.


Highland Cross is reluctant to donate to large collector funds where there is a long time scale to the realisation of a project. Highland Cross may contribute to such a project where they are being asked to fund the cost of a specific item to complete the project such as furnishings or equipment for a building.


The Application date

Applications must be with Highland Cross by 30 September 2018 (please note new deadline date).


The Commitment from Charities nominated as Major Beneficiaries

Major beneficiaries are expected to contribute to the successful organisation of the event by:  contributing £1,000 towards the costs AND providing 20 appropriate people to act as marshals.  


Applications for smaller amounts of assistance

Applications for smaller amounts of assistance should also be made by 30 September 2018, and if surplus funds are available from the 2018 event, a distribution may be made thereafter. The smallest grant ever given was for just under £60.  Applicants for smaller sums are not required to pledge finance but Highland Cross will look to beneficiaries that receive larger sums from the “small” grants to support a future Highland Cross with “hands on” assistance on the day to help with marshalling duties.


Application process

Whether charities are looking for a small grant,  or to be a major beneficiary, applications must be made on the funding application form.

The charity application form can be downloaded here.


The completed form should be sent ideally by email to info@highlandcross.co.uk with the required supporting documents to arrive by 30 September 2018.   If sending by post, please send form and documents to Highland Cross Organisers, Redwood, 19 Culduthel Road, Inverness, IV2 4AA.


Please   ensure   that   you   use   the   current   form.  Applications   made   on   previous versions of the form will have to be rejected.


Charity Selection Process

All applications undergo an initial screening to ensure that they meet the basic eligibility criteria.  If successful at that stage, applications go to an Independent Selection Panel. The Organising Committee do not select the charities as a number of the Organisers are professionally involved with charity work in the Highlands.


Major Beneficiaries

Charities are chosen by an Independent Charity Selection Panel of three members who are quite   separate   from   the   Organising   Committee.     Highland Cross will have four or five major beneficiaries each year.  The   Charity   Selection   Panel normally selects up to 6 potential major beneficiaries for interview which will take place in November or early December 2018 in Inverness. The Panel will then inform the Organisers of the nominated causes. 


The Independent Charity Selection Panel takes a number of criteria into consideration. A copy of the Panel Guidance can be obtained here.


Smaller Grants

Grants for smaller amounts are assessed on the basis of the application form. Where they consider it necessary the Independent Charity Selection Panel may seek additional information from applicants.


The following are statements from charities benefiting from Highland Cross 2018 fundraising


Abriachan Forest Trust

Abriachan Forest Trust is a popular community woodland, established as a social enterprise in 1998 to support access for all, to encourage learning and recreation outdoors, to create local jobs and improve the environment through careful forest management. The health benefits of spending time in the outdoors are well documented and evidenced by positive progress and improved wellbeing of the individuals and groups we support on a daily basis. Our current participants include adults who have mental ill health, pupils who have additional support needs, families with young children who are considered more vulnerable and care experienced young people. We often get asked if it would be possible to stay out longer – sometimes just into the evening but others, who have previously been socially isolated, regularly tell us they would like to stay for the occasional overnight. This is because they are more confident in their ability to cope with some challenge and know that managing to sleep in a different bed is a huge step towards more independence. The Highland Cross funding would purchase a locally built bothy ( A’Phoball – drovers’ herding hut) to provide this respite opportunity for the more vulnerable adults, for families attending our Roots to Resilience groups and for our young people who also benefit from their regular times spent learning, volunteering and working in the calm woodland environment. It will also be the example for future bothy building projects with our groups, providing them with transferrable skills, leading towards apprenticeships or returns to employment.

Blythswood Care
Blythswood have seen consistent growth in referrals to the Highland Foodbanks in recent years. In 2016 over 5,500 people were fed from Foodbanks in times of crisis.  Most of the distributed food is donated but we absorb associated costs as well as the additional need for support services. Predictions are that Foodbanks, as crisis support, are here to stay.

To support Foodbanks around the Highlands we collect and deliver food daily. The current minibus is used in addition to a van. We are supported by a large number of volunteers at depots, shops and Foodbanks. Many of these are elderly and/or don’t drive. The minibus is used for picking up volunteers; many of whom would not be able to help and also significantly benefit from the social aspect of being with people as they do so.

Our current minibus is nearly six years old and has done over 100,000 miles. It is beginning to require repairs and therefore costs more to run than when newer. The cost of running the Foodbanks to Blythswood is £90,000 each year which has to be found from general income.


Replacing the minibus will reduce our outgoings and provide an efficient up-to-date vehicle to meet these varying need for some years to come.
A new minibus will help us to make a difference to the lives of an estimated 10,000 people in the Highlands within the first two years who at some point will rely on Foodbanks in order to have food on their plates.

Highland Hospice
At Highland Hospice we aim to support people, their families and carers, living with an advancing, life shortening illness in the Highlands to live the best possible life and to prepare for and experience the best possible death. By managing pain and other physical symptoms, we help make time and space for reflection, for gaining perspective and for achieving a measure of calm and tranquillity. Crucially, our team also offers advice with the emotional, social and spiritual issues that may arise and works with patients and loved ones at a time of transition to help them enjoy, value and commemorate life. By delivering and sharing our skills in our Inpatient Unit and Day Therapy Centres, in local hospitals and care homes and at home, we seek to provide our patients and their loved ones with respect, dignity and choice both during the patient’s illness and into bereavement.

The grant from the Highland Cross will be used to replace our current van and allow us to continue our essential activities in the retail and fundraising department of Highland Hospice. We have 12 charity shops and a central store. Donated goods are transported between shops in order to ensure that every shop has a high level of quality stock. This maximises the profitability of each shop, increasing net income to support the delivery of Hospice services.

MS Therapy Centre
The Oxygen Works, created by The MS Therapy Centre in Inverness, provides a range of treatments – including Oxygen Therapy, physiotherapy and massage therapies – all aimed at helping people with long-term, complex health conditions to gain symptomatic relief. We also operate a very social lunch club daily and help combat isolation in the Highlands, by running a mini bus service. We assist people of all ages living with a variety of health concerns, such as Multiple Sclerosis, cancer, Parkinson’s and diabetes.

We are the only facility of our kind in the UK providing this range of therapies and services to such a diverse population of individuals and operate the only oxygen chamber in the central Highlands of Scotland.

More than 500 centre members travel from across the Highlands, from as far afield as Aberdeen and The Outer Hebrides, to use the facilities. Over our 25 years we have helped all ages from an eight-month-old baby to a 99-year-old grandmother.

As part of our 25th Anniversary celebrations, we rebranded, which has meant increased awareness along with an influx of users and most definitely a greater demand on the services. This is fantastic as we step forward into a capital build stage, however, in the interim we need to continue providing our services, our bus being imperative. Due to our rapidly growing membership we are now looking to purchase a second bus to operate long distance routes, while keeping our current bus as a local service, enabling us to help more people efficiently.

Skye and Lochalsh Mental Health Association
Our furniture project, which runs entirely on donations, accepts furniture and household goods and passes them on to those in need. In a typical year we supply 120 – 130 households, many of whom have absolutely nothing. It’s especially hard for people in Skye and Lochalsh to find affordable second hand goods. Everything we pass on is also saved from going to landfill.

The people who help out in the project are people who use our mental health drop-in centre. Around 10 people currently do this and it builds their confidence and gives them a real sense of “giving back” to the community.

This Highland Cross donation would make an immense difference to the project. We have huge storage issues which means that we currently have to bin items that we’d otherwise hold on to.   Having container units to store the furniture in would help us keep more stock and also free up both the van and our activities room in the centre, both of which we have to use as storage as we can’t store soft furnishings in the polytunnel.

The van we currently have was donated by Highland cross in 2009 and has been in almost daily use since then, but time and multiple drivers are taking its toll and it’s now becoming costly to keep on the road. We have and will continue to lend the van to other organisations locally who need it.