Ethnic minority organisations in the voluntary sector encounter red
tape and discrimination but no empathy when applying for grants,
according to new research.
A survey of 115 ethnic minority voluntary and community groups by
the Home Office’s active community unit found that 83 per cent of
them perceived a lack of fairness in the distribution of
Many felt their causes were seen as unimportant by the mostly white
grants panels, or that panels simply assumed that they were
dishonest or unable to manage the funds.
Organisations felt they were “belittled constantly” or were
mistrusted because a different ethnic minority organisation had
mishandled funds in the past.
Many complained that grant application forms were full of jargon,
unnecessarily complex and sought irrelevant information.
In addition, the report says “adverse publicity about bogus asylum
seekers caused funders not to support any black and minority ethnic
Fundraising was commonly seen as a “necessary evil”, with no
dedicated person, team or department versed in fundraising skills.
Only 38 per cent had received any help with fundraising and 60 per
cent had not attended fundraising courses.
Organisations surveyed had an average income of £150,000, with
52 per cent citing statutory sources of funding such as local
authorities and 23 per cent citing National Lottery boards.
– Finding the Funds, by Maggie Taylor and Ilene Hoyle,
from Kelly Consultancy on 020 8868 0207.