Application guidance

Once you have been invited to apply for the fund, you will be provided with a link to the Social Investment Business online application portal to complete a six question application form.

Your Access Point will be able to help you answer the application questions. Your answers will be combined with some of the information you provided in your Diagnostic Tool and will then be reviewed by Social Investment Business. If we have any questions about the information you have provided, we may get in touch with either you or your Access Point to ask for further information.  As a general rule, please provide as much information as possible. Full application guidance is available to download.

The application questions

1.         Investment raise amount

Here you need to indicate how much repayable finance you are hoping to raise from your Access Point.  You should have already been in discussions with your Access Point about this before applying to the Reach Fund. 

You will only be able to enter a numbers in this field so please don’t try to enter symbols.

2.         Detail the purpose of this investment

We need to understand what you will use the investment for; i.e. purchasing a building or other assets, raising working capital or development capital. 

If you intend to use the investment to refurbish or purchase any property, equipment or other assets please detail this along with where/what these are, what stage you are at with the purchase, the value of the assets, and if appropriate whether you have any necessary permissions (such as planning permission). 

If the investment you are raising is one part of a larger amount that involves other funding sources, please detail this along with what stage you are at with raising other funds. If you have secured other funding, please tell us who these other funders are and any specific terms they have specified.

3.         Detail your investment readiness needs

We need to understand why you aren’t able to raise this finance without support from the Reach Fund. What barriers are preventing you from raising this investment now? 

Your Access Point may have already provided you with feedback as to why they cannot provide you with an investment, and if they have please detail this here.  If you have multiple investment readiness needs, please detail each one individually.

4.         Reach Fund grant amount requested

Here you need to indicate how much grant you are asking for to help you become investment ready.

Again, you will only be able to enter a numbers in this field so please don’t try to enter symbols.

5.         Detail your investment readiness plan

Here we want you to describe your investment readiness plan, detailing who will undertake the work, and the timeframes for it to be completed. Your investment readiness plan should relate to the investment readiness needs identified in your answer to question three. 

Please break the work down if you have highlighted multiple investment readiness needs. You should also indicate the expected cost of work.

The Reach Fund cannot pay retrospective or core costs. We cannot reimburse you for work that has already begun, or for something that you have to pay for as part of normal running costs. We also cannot fund early stage feasibility work. 

For any applications to the Reach Fund the feasibility of a project must have been established. The purpose of the Reach Fund is to provide specific investment readiness support to enable your Access Point to make an investment offer.

6.         Who will undertake work outlined?

We need to understand who will do the work outlined in the investment readiness plan, and why they have been chosen.  It is important for us to ensure that the work we fund is done by appropriate people/organisations, so you need to provide enough information so that we are confident of this. 

Please make it clear who will do the work. This may be the name of a person or an organisation but you do need to identify who will do the work and what it will entail.  If you need to pay VAT on any of the work being done, please make you include this in the amount of grant you are requesting.

If you are undertaking some of the work yourself, you need to indicate what the cost of doing this is. We cannot contribute to your costs just because you are undertaking the investment readiness project, but we can consider backfill or additional staff time requests. 

If your Access Point has indicated that they will do some of the work, we can consider this (although this is not how we expect the majority of support to be provided) but we need to understand why they are best placed to do the work. 

For any third party providers you are using please tell us how you selected them.  Also, please indicate whether your Access Point made any recommendations with regard to who should carry out the work.

We want to be sure that you are happy with whoever is doing the work supported by the Reach Fund.

How to submit your application?

You can save your application while you are filling in the information and come back to it at any time. To login back into your application visit www.sibgroup.org.uk and click on the ‘Community’ option at the top of the page.

Once you are ready for us to review your application, just tick the box marked ‘Submit Application’ at the bottom of the application form.

Once you have ticked this and resaved your application, it will be submitted. Please note, once you have submitted the application you will not be able to make any further changes to it.

What happens after you have submitted your application?

Once we have received your application, your Access Point will also be asked to provide a supporting statement which will detail why they think you are a good fit for the fund, why this work will enable them to make an investment offer and why they support your application.

Your application will be reviewed by Social Investment Business.  If we have any questions we will get in touch with you, and we may also contact your Access Point. 

Your application will then be considered by a panel which will contain people from both Social Investment Business and Access – the Foundation for Social Investment.  You should expect to get a decision within 4-6 weeks of submitting your application.

Need further guidance?

If you need further guidance or information please do get in touch.