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Guidelines for successful applications

ButterflyDVThe following guidelines are simply offered as a framework to help you to apply for a grant, and to give you an idea of what the Dreams & Visions Core Team will be looking for.


The work is of service to local communities.

Projects will be considered which serve the local community. The proposed work will not be primarily for existing members of congregations; it will be primarily to share the compassion of Christ with the Church’s neighbours. Of course, the work may benefit Church members as well, but we will be looking for evidence of an outward perspective.

The idea will be considered if it is bottom-up, not top-down.

Our purpose of is to release the dreams and visions of God’s people in Norfolk to serve others, not to further schemes designed by some, for execution by others. It is really important for us that we help people to do what they are really wanting to do. 

Bids will be considered which come from members of more than one congregation.

We will only become involved if there is no better alternative. We don’t want to get in the way of individual congregations focussing on their own social action projects; Dreams & Visions is only here to assist with things that cannot be done by congregations working alone. Anglican congregations should come from more than one ‘benefice’.

Projects will be considered which are predominantly ‘Monday to Saturday’ work.

We believe it is the job of individual congregations to focus on the quality of their work on Sundays; D&V is here to support service to others throughout the rest of the week. Of course, events may take place on Sunday as well, but they will not predominantly relate to the Sunday life of the Church.

Applicants will be considered where they can provide a spiritual character reference.

Dreams & Visions seeks to work cooperatively with each and every congregation in Norfolk. To ensure this, we shall ask for a written reference for applicants from either their Churches or a Christian who can vouch for their ability and passion for the work. We reserve the right to speak with referees as part of the application process. 

The process

Please ensure your application is sent to at least two weeks before each meeting date.

Dreams & Visions will not be funding any more projects in 2018 and 2019. Watch this space for further details.

Your application will be forwarded around the team and discussed at this meeting
If the team considers that your application meets our criteria (see below), two team members will arrange an informal visit to find out more about your project.  We value the power of working together, and through these visits we hope to find ways to link projects that can benefit from each other (resources, expertise, experience etc).

The team members will then report back to the rest of team at the next business meeting (usually one month later). Here we will discuss your application further, in light of the report from the visit. Prayerfully, a decision will be made on funding and any other support we may be able to offer.  So please bear in mind that the process can take a few months.
If you meet the guidelines above, Dreams & Visions will use the following criteria to prayerfully prioritise applications.


Projects will be considered on their potential for generosity and excellence.

We believe that the projects should exemplify the characteristics of the Creator – namely generosity and excellence in all things. We want to facilitate work which is recognised by these hallmarks and which strives for quality in all aspects.

Any projects/work will be considered that has the hallmarks of God’s passion and vision.

We don’t want to place barriers in the way of good ideas at the early stages of an application. Our instinct will be to capture the vision and start piloting the work. All of us will be able to see the issues better four or five months in than we can on paper before the event. We will work with applicants towards the end of the pilot time to help make decisions about the way forward.

We will consider offering matched-funding to help you to release other funds.

We don't want to be the kind of organisation that people approach with a heavy heart 'because they'll always only give half what we need'. We don't want matched funding to depress applicants or unreasonably elongate their search for funding. We want to 'release' people; not bind them.

However, we believe in networks and relationships across congregational boundaries and bottom up work. We have seen some really fantastic examples where matched funding worked wonderfully: it fostered relationships, it involved new people (giving 'in kind'). It laid the seeds for 'sustainability after Dreams & Visions'.

So we will always explore with every applicant how some or all of our grant might be 'matched funded’.

We will look for cost effectiveness.

It’s not just about numbers, but we do want to see the money entrusted to us go as far as possible, and we will favour applications that demonstrate that large numbers of people will be served by small amounts of money over ones that seem to indicate the opposite.

We will be looking for evidence of sustainability.

We are thinking hard about ways in which projects can be viable into the future.  We're sure that applicants will want the same and would ask them to share with us how they would aim to achieve this.  We have worked successfully in the past with the principle of matched funding for phase two, for instance.
Click here to download the application form

Please send this application form in as a Word document and not as a PDF.