Lead The Change UnLtd – Frequently Asked Questions


Lead the Change UnLtd Programme

What are the Awards?

We have two levels of Awards:

  • Try It Awards – support and up to £500 of funding
  • Do It Awards – support and up to £2,000 of funding

Each award is different and is tailored to the different stages in a social entrepreneur’s journey.

Try It Awards – offer small amounts of funding of up to £500, for individuals to try out their ideas. This might mean finding out if their idea is viable, learning more about what is needed and trying the project on a small scale first.

The Award provides an opportunity for individuals not yet used to managing large sums of money or planning larger projects to take the first steps towards starting their own project and gaining the skills needed to run it. The funding enables individuals to progress at their own pace with the right support to develop the entrepreneurial skills they will require to, in some cases, take on larger projects.

Do It Awards – are for up to £2,000, allowing individuals to grow an entrepreneurial idea. Do It Awards are for individuals that are confident their project will work and have the basic skills to do it. Award Winners who have completed Try It Awards may now feel confident enough and have honed their ideas to be able to develop their project.

Other people may come straight in at this level as they demonstrate they have the energy and skills to take forward an idea that has some project planning already in place.

How can I apply?
Applying is quite simple. The first step is to make an enquiry by telephone, email, online, at an idea generation event or by appointment with your relevant contact. Following an enquiry, you will be contacted to discuss and assess your idea before you submit your application.

Can an Award pay for salary costs?
No. Try It and Do It Awards are solely for project costs.

Can an Award pay for course fees and bursaries?
No. Awards are made to individuals for projects that address identified social problems.

Can I apply for more than one Award?
You can only receive the same level of Award once. However, you can apply for a higher level of Award, eg you can progress from a Try It Award to a Do It Award, showing that with the right support and funding you can move your project on.

Your Do It application does not have to be for the same project as a previous Award. You can apply with a different project as long as it meets the criteria of that Award.

Can I go straight to a Do It?
Whilst we are encouraging people to use the Try It Awards to test themselves and their ideas, we know some people are ready to go straight for a package of support and larger Award amount. We will explore this with you when you first contact us about your idea.

How often and where will I receive payments?
Normally we make a one-off payment for Try It Awards. For other Award levels, we make payments in installments during the course of the Award period via BACS transfer. In most cases we will pay the funding into your bank account.

How long are the Awards for?
Try It Award Winners are generally offered a three to six month support package. Do It Award Winners are generally offered a 12 month support package. However, we realise that sometimes things take longer and we can negotiate with you as you begin implementing your idea.

Can I look for funding from other sources while applying for this Award?
Yes, we do not have any funding restrictions in place with regards to other funding feeding into your project.

Can I apply on my own?
Yes, we encourage individuals to apply. However, remember to think about what kind of support you might need from other people to run the activities of your project.

Can I apply as part of a group?
Yes, all you need to do is select one of the group members to be the ‘lead individual’ on the Application form. This is the person who will act as the main contact and who will receive the Award payments. All group members must also complete an Application form stating that they are a group member under question 13.

Do you fund existing businesses?
If you are already an established business or a registered group you are not eligible for a Try It Award. If you are in the early stages of development but have not yet started to deliver your project, you may be eligible for a Do It Award.

Am I still eligible to apply if I want to set up a business further down the line?
It depends on what kind of business you want to create. If you want to turn your project idea into something more sustainable in the long term that’s fine but we would like you to ensure that you continue to have real social impact.

If my application is not successful, can I re-apply?
Yes. If you are unsuccessful we would encourage you to contact your College who will help you to understand why your application was unsuccessful so that you can work towards a successful application.

The beneficiaries of the project I would like to apply for funding for are not based in the UK, is this ok?
The project would have to have majority benefit for people in the UK. We have funded projects that indirectly benefit people in other countries but they should primarily benefit UK residents.

Can Awards be used to fund feasibility studies?
No, not if the study is to establish need and achievability; need should already be evident and demand established by prior (market) research. All proposals must have an activity, product or service that will be delivered.