The Anchor Programme: FAQ

Frequently Asked Questions about the Anchor Programme

Anchor Programme FAQs

This fund is available to second-tier organisations (also known as infrastructure organisations) and sets out to provide high-quality support to wider networks of frontline voluntary, community, and social enterprise organisations in the capital.

Applicants must demonstrate that they are a second-tier organisation that delivers support to frontline organisations and offer activities such as:

  • capacity building services and/​or voice
  • representation and advocacy support to the voluntary, community and social enterprise sectors
  • policy and research
  • networking and relationship building

Your organisation must fall into one of the following categories:

  • Registered charity
  • Registered Community Interest Company
  • Registered Charitable Incorporated Organisation
  • Charitable company
  • Exempt or excepted charity
  • Registered charitable industrial and provident society or charitable Cooperative (BenCom)

We cannot fund:

  • Political parties
  • Part political campaigning / lobbying
  • Non-charitable activities
  • Work which does not benefit those who live in Greater London

We do not fund:

  • Individuals (except through our nominated agencies)
  • Grant-making bodies to make grants on our behalf (except through our nominated agencies)
  • Schools, PTAs, universities, or other educational establishments
  • Work taking place in schools, except for the delivery of non-statutory mental health services
  • Medical or academic research
  • Churches or other religious bodies where the monies will be used for religious purposes
  • Hospitals or primary healthcare providers
  • Community amateur sports clubs
  • Projects which have already taken place or building work which has already been completed
  • Statutory bodies, such as local authorities
  • Profit-making organisations, except social enterprises
  • Charities established/​registered outside the UK
  • Festivals or events which last no longer than a few days
  • Activities or projects which incorporate an overnight stay
  • Residential care services
  • Residential facilities (except where they provide short-term emergency accommodation)

Yes, existing City Bridge Foundation grant holders and those who are currently at assessment stage can apply for the Anchor Programme.

If you are shortlisted after the Expression of Interest stage and invited to apply for stage two, the City Bridge Foundation team will look at your organisation’s existing grant and any assessments in progress, to avoid duplicating funding.

Yes, to be eligible for funding, organisations should have an existing minimum annual income of £100,000.

We will not award funding exceeding 50% of the applicant’s turnover/​income in any one year. As the minimum annual grant available is £50,000, organisations must have £100,000 in annual income.

If you are invited to submit a proposal for stage two, we will ask to see a copy of your most recent annual report and latest management accounts.

Please note that we are not considering applications from organisations with an annual turnover of less than £100,000.

All details of our application process can be found on the main Anchor Programme landing page, along with our funding guidance.

Expression of Interests must be submitted by 11pm on Monday 8 May 2023, on our online funding portal.

Once applications have been reviewed and shortlisted, we will send outcome emails, to both successful and unsuccessful applicants, soon after the deadline.

If you are successful in stage one, we will invite you to submit a stage two application from Monday 15 May 2023.

Depending on the number of Expressions of Interest submitted we may not be able to provide individual feedback, but we will try our best to explain why applications were not taken to stage two.

We will list the most common reasons of why we turn down applicants on our website. The aim of the Expression of Interest stage is for organisations to receive a swift outcome.

Yes, there will be a second round in 2024, giving you an opportunity to re-apply, providing you meet our eligibility criteria.

Yes, there will be a second round of funding in 2024, more information to follow on our website.

The aim of the Anchor Programme is to support organisations that demonstrate a commitment to equitable practice and address the marginalisation and discrimination experienced by those with intersecting identities. 

We will ask you to provide evidence that you are already embedding equitable practice or that you are in the process of doing so, for example, by sharing information about your organisation’s EDI (Equity, Diversity & Inclusion) strategy, such as minutes of meetings, strategic documents, recruitment strategies etc.

Systemic change is about tackling the inbuilt inequalities which privilege some groups in society and disadvantage others. Bringing about systemic change is about addressing the causes, rather than the symptoms, of a societal issue.

We understand that systems change is a wide and complicated topic, ahead of submitting your Expression of Interest you may wish to read the following supporting research and resources for additional guidance:

Yes, provided the work is for a discrete London focus. Organisations based outside London also need to demonstrate that they have the necessary skills and experience to work in London and that they are meeting a need that London-based organisations are not.

We are unable to offer individual calls or advice on proposals as it is not possible to speak with all potential applicants. Our aim is to be open, fair, and transparent and it would be unfair to meet some organisations and not others.

We encourage you to visit the main Anchor Programme landing page for additional information and guidance.

Organisations awarded grants under the Anchor Programme will be reviewed every three years. This will be an opportunity to assess progress made and to discuss future plans.

If for example your organisation has a grant of 10 years then there will be a review after three years, after six years and after nine years.

If you are shortlisted and invited to apply at stage two of the Anchor Programme, we will ask you to submit a draft budget that shows the total funding you are requesting (between 7 and 10 years) using a budget template which we will supply.

We recognise that your organisation may need to respond flexibly to changing priorities and there will be an opportunity to discuss this budget with your Funding Manager. You can request a minimum of £50,000 per year, and a maximum of £150,000 per year.

Applicants are encouraged to include costs for evaluation and learning time as part of your budget. We also encourage applicants to include any access need costs, such as expenditure on translation and interpreting services.

The grants application portal will remain open for Expressions of Interest until Monday 8 May 2023. Following notification, successful applicants will be able to submit their stage two applications between 19 May and 14 June 2023.

Expressions of Interest were shortlisted and reviewed by a shortlisting panel composed of civil society organisations. Notification emails have been sent to everyone who applied. Unfortunately, we are unable to provide individual feedback to unsuccessful applicants. However, we have listed the most common reasons for not advancing applications through to the second stage.