This is the first ever Spark Grant round, and the first grant round the Foundation has opened since developing values and principles to guide what we do.

When designing the Spark Grant program and application process we were trying to do things differently as a partner and as a funder.  We have written an initial accountability report that shares our intentions, the process undertaken and our reflections and learnings at this stage. You can access the full report at the bottom of this page.

Some key things we would like to share with you from this report are:

  • While applications were open we had 25 face to face or video consultations, 62% of which subsequently submitted  an application. 
  • Overall, we received 57 applications from 41 organisations during the six week application period.
  • All of the applications demonstrated insightful and passionate ideas and the majority met all of the assessment criteria
  • We ran a strengths based assessment meaning we were looking for what was there instead of focussing on what wasn’t. 
  • After multiple staff assessments and discussions in order to refine our decision we stepped through the below series of questions to tease out how well an application met the assessment criteria and to create a shortlist of applications.

            * Is it strengths based?
            * Does it create connection?
            * Does it adopt a holistic approach?
            * Does it propose an alternative option, new approach or fill a gap?
            * Will it be driven by/with and for community?
            * Does it seek to address a root cause?

  • The Board made the final selection of six applications from a recommended shortlist

We have shared four key learnings in our report but we will also be circulating a short (four question) anonymous evaluation survey to applicants to gather further insights into how we can improve the process next time. We also invite you to get in touch if you would like to share any thoughts or discuss feedback.