Working with Existing Trusts and Foundations

As well as working with our own Fund Holders, KCF is committed to working in partnership with Charitable Foundations, Trusts and other grant-making bodies to maximise benefit for the people of Kent - from informal cross-referral to more formal arrangements; from dormant or semi-dormant Trusts to well-established and proactive grant-makers.

For instance, between 2008 and 2011 we distributed nearly £2m on behalf of the Cabinet Office’s Grassroots Grants programme as small grants, to over 600 local community projects. 

If you are a Trustee, or if you are involved in the running of a Charitable Trust, you might like to consider one of the following partnership options:

Join our Funders Forum

KCF has established an informal Kent Funders Forum, bringing together locally-based charitable trusts for cross-referrals, informal support, and best practice discussion. We are currently populating a database of local funders as a resource which will be available to members of the forum to contact each other between gatherings. If you would like to join or learn more about the Funders Forum, please contact our Development Officer, Sophie Hosking, at

Out-sourcing your small grants programme

We already work with a number of well-established Charitable Trusts who manage their own successful national or regional programmes, but want to take advantage of KCF’s expertise and local knowledge in running a local small grants programme with a proportion of their overall grant-making funds.

We have been running a small grants Fund for Kent on behalf of The Brook Trust for over five years.

Through this Fund, we support projects that fall within the general Brook Trust funding criteria of tackling disadvantage, deprivation and social exclusion, with a particular focus on early intervention. Our role is to find local projects and groups where a modest amount of money can make a big difference.

The Trustees of The Brook Trust are fully involved in the decision-making process and no grant is made without their approval. It is a very effective partnership that brings tremendous benefit to projects working with the most socially isolated across the county:

“Through KCF I am constantly learning about the level of need in Kent and the best way to try to meet it. Kent Community Foundation has fully enabled our philosophy of giving to hard-to-fund projects: ones that would get nowhere by shaking a tin. This way we have been able to reach many small grassroots projects, such as Young at Heart in Tunbridge Wells, a lifeline for isolated pensioners. They are helped to the club each week by a team of dedicated volunteers, for a cup of tea, a chat and occasional outings. The Trust would simply not be able to provide this vital, widespread but small-scale support on its own." (Rosalind Riley, Trustee of The Brook Trust)

Setting up an administration and management agreement with KCF

KCF can take over the day-to-day management and grant-making bureaucracy of the Charitable Trust under an administration and management agreement. The Trustees have peace of mind that the charity’s affairs are being handled effectively and professionally by KCF; they remain involved in decision-making and the Trust maintains its status as a registered charity.

An example of this kind of partnership is The Sir Charles Jessel Charitable Trust whose administration has been managed by KCF since 2006. This kind of arrangement is not permanent and can be reviewed at regular intervals.

KCF can help with dormant or ineffective trusts

From time to time Charitable Trusts or Foundations may find it difficult to fulfil their original aims and objectives for a wide variety of reasons – perhaps the aims are no longer applicable, Trustees are unable to meet together, or suitable projects in the locality are not forthcoming.

Kent Community Foundation is the ideal organisation to turn to, and can help you find the most effective solution to this dilemma. The Charity Commission have acknowledged the work of Community Foundations in revitalising moribund (dormant) or ineffective trusts – see the Charity Commission statement.

For further information, please contact us or see Trust Transfers.  To read our Hawkenbury Trust Transfer case study, click here.

Make a grant to support KCF's work

A Foundation or Trust could support our work strengthening communities and encouraging local giving by making a grant directly to KCF. Such a donation can return many more times its original value as it helps us generate new charitable giving and new sources of funding for Kent and Medway communities. For example, The Colyer-Fergusson Charitable Trust made a substantial financial commitment to help KCF employ a new Chief Executive and support our strategic development.

An important benefit of working with a Community Foundation is the level of involvement and decision-making that our partner Trusts, Foundations and charities retain, while taking advantage of our 15 years’ expertise, local knowledge and network of local contacts.  

Contact our Development Team on if you would like more information on any of the above.