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Ideas that Change Lives – Open for Applications

Ideas that Change Lives offers business support and financial investment to support and encourage organisations and individuals to develop socially enterprising ideas that enable Leeds residents with care and support needs to remain independent. The types of activity they seek to fund include alternatives to traditional day care and support services; brokerage; health and well-being promoting activities; employment-related opportunities.

The fund has now re-launched and is seeking to support new beneficiaries. The current application round is open until 24 April 2015

Changes to programme

  • Beneficiaries can now include people with: alcohol or substance use issues; long term health conditions; carers and young people in transition between services.
  • Development Grants replace Start up and range from £5,000 to £15,000.
  • Community Capacity Grants of £500 to £2,000 are now available.

Grants Available

There are three types of grants as detailed below. Capital items or revenue costs can be funded. Support is available for pilot projects and start-up costs, or to contribute to expanding or developing your current trading or enterprising activity.

Community Capacity Grants Fund, £500-£2,000 – for individuals or groups to build the capacity of the local community to support people with additional needs to remain independent (e.g. setting up time-banks or groups of residents coming together to do community work which would also benefit people with care or support needs) or develop new peer support groups. This grant is for ideas that are driven by people or communities of interest rather than organisations.

Kick Start Grants Fund, £500-£5,000 – for organisations with a socially enterprising idea that supports people to live independently in their own homes but who need support to develop the idea into a full business plan. We are looking to fund new social enterprises / socially enterprising activities that can become financially sustainable beyond the end of the grant process, either through generating income; charging or being commissioned.

Development Grants Fund, £5,000 – £15,000 – for services/activities that support people with care and support needs to remain independent. We will not consider an application directly to this Fund unless you have discussed your idea with us first, so please either submit the Expression of Interest form or get in touch with us to talk more about your idea.

The current application round will close on 24 April 2015.

For full details on how to apply visit:

Ideas So Far

Since October 2013 the Ideas that Change Lives programme has awarded a total of £98,000 in grants, including seven to individuals and groups setting up a new social enterprise and 23 to pre-existing organisations expanding or improving a service.

The programme received:

  • 41 Kick Start applications leading to 27 awards.
  • 17 Start Up applications leading to 6 awards.
  • 2 groups received a Kick Start award and progressed to receiving a Start Up award.

The greatest number of grants benefited people with learning disabilities or mental health issues (both around 30%) followed by older people at (20%) and sensory and physical impairment (10 %). The types of activities funded have been alternatives to traditional day services, including creative/sensory experiences and outdoor activities; cafes or food based trading; self-management/advocacy or empowerment; support in the home/garden; PA related support and employment.

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