iWill Programme

#iwill is a UK-wide campaign that aims to make social action part of life for as many young people as possible by the year 2020. Through collaboration and partnership, it is spreading the word about the benefits of youth social action.

Step Up To Serve, The National Lottery Community Fund and the Government Office for Civil Society have invested £2 million this year to fund groups delivering youth social action opportunities.

iWill Programme

Youth social action includes volunteering, fundraising and campaigning, as well as skills and confidence-building projects which work with young people, particularly from less affluent backgrounds, to develop an appetite for this sort of activity.

Local groups can apply for grants of between £1,000 and £5,000 for youth social action projects which last up to a year (they can be one-off events). The definition of young people is between 10 and 20, and up to 25 for disabled young people.

For this year we are aiming to increase participation from young people from less affluent social economic groups and young people who might not usually take part in volunteering, campaigning and fundraising activities. There is also particular interest to reach out and engage young people at the younger end of the spectrum (10-14 years old).

Applications should demonstrate how they will apply all six principles of youth social action: reflective, challenging, youth-led, socially impactful, progressive, embedded.

This fund aims to develop opportunities rather than fund the ongoing costs of existing youth work. For more details on what we will fund and won’t fund, please read the Fund Criteria below.

How to Apply?

We strongly advise you to read the Full Fund Criteria and our Grant Making Policy  before you apply.

In order for us to follow our decision-making process, the information given in your application will be shared with our independent panel members and/or donors as appropriate. Panel members are subject to a confidentiality agreement. Please see our Privacy Policy for more information on data sharing and storage.

When to apply?

The fund is now CLOSED for applications.

Groups will be notified of the outcome of their application by the end of September and grants will be awarded to successful groups in October, pending receipt of signed grant Terms and Conditions.

Before you apply, please read through the  iWill Key funding principles.

Dorset Community Foundation would like to thank the 4814 Trust who generously match funded this years’ grants programme with a contribution of £25,000.


If you are unsure about any of the above criteria or have any other queries, please contact our Grants Manager Ellie Maguire on 01202 670815 or at grants@dorsetcf.org.

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