What we do

We give grants to charitable organisations

But not just any old organisations or work.First, we are very focused in the causes we support. Our four current themes are:

  • Wildlife Particularly in Shropshire, Suffolk and Hampshire.

  • Music Specifically community music, and also community arts more generally.

  • Advice and information work to support vulnerable and disadvantaged people.

  • End of life care. And how it can be better.

 

Second, we are interested in the ways project deliver their benefits.

We are particularly interested in projects that involve any of these ways of working:

  • Projects we can all learn from

  • Less popular  work

  • Projects that might have a big impact

  • Cross-theme working.

In detail

We have less than half a million pounds in total to award in grants. This is not very much: if we are to do any good with it, we must spend wisely and purposefully. We cannot cover every need. So we are restricting ourselves initially to four themes that relate to the family members inspiring Thomas Deane Trust: see Who we are.

  • Environmental Perhaps more specifically wildlife-related: Eric and Joyce Thomas worked hard for a wildlife trust on their return to England after living in Canada for 16 years. The trustees have interests in wildlife and the environment in the areas where they live.

  • Music Specifically community music, and hence community arts more generally – art work that helps develop and sustain communities, to build identity in individuals, and to exploit music’s inherent power to make change. Eric Thomas passed on his love of music to Sue Thomas at a very early age; and it is central to her identity that she is a “violinist". Kathryn Deane spent most of her working life managing and developing community music and musicians.

  • Advice work That is, advice and information work to support vulnerable and disadvantaged people. Eric and Joyce Thomas spent not only money but crucially time in helping and supporting many individuals over their lifetimes. Sue Thomas spent almost all her working life in advice work.

  • End of life care Sue’s parents were active supporters of hospices, and Eric Thomas and his older daughter Ann died being cared for in their local hospices. Sue Thomas and Kathryn Deane cared for Joyce Thomas in their home in the last years of her life. We have an interest in how to improve end of life care whether in hospices, at home or in hospital.

 

The trustees may make changes to these themes at any time.

Our interest in ways of working is less dogmatic. These are our interests - but if you can show better ways of working, then we'll surely listen.

  • learning projects These might be pilots, or preliminary research where an organisation has an idea but needs funding for early thinking. Applicants will need to tell us what they hope to get out of the project; what they’ll do if it all goes differently; where and how they will disseminate the results (whether successful or not).

  • less popular causes Applicants will need to demonstrate where they’ve looked for funding and been rejected. While TDT is unlikely to want to be a minority funder the trustees might fund a specific, identifiable bit of a larger project

  • small projects that have the potential to have a meaningful impact

  • cross-themes Projects that genuinely need to work over more than one theme or way of working. For example, there is clearly scope for a learning project bringing together music, advice work and end of life care.

 
 
 
 

What we do

We give grants to charitable organisations

But not just any old organisations or work.First, we are very focused in the causes we support. Our four current themes are:

  • Environment Particularly in Shropshire, Suffolk and Hampshire.

  • Music Specifically community music, and also community arts more generally.

  • Advice and information work to support vulnerable and disadvantaged people.

  • End of life care. And how it can be better.

Read more about our themes here

Second, we’re not interested in what you do. Or, rather – we’re not as interested in what you do as in the results of what you do. In other words, the point of your work is not the work, it’s the difference, improvement, or change that your work creates that’s the point.

 

Organisations who work like that constantly are often called outcomes-orientated organisations; and the funders who fund them are outcomes-oriented funders (or just outcomes funders). TDT is an outcomes funder, and we’ll scrutinise carefully what you say about the outcomes of your work.

 

Read more about outcomes funding here

​Third, we are interested in the ways project deliver their benefits.

We are particularly interested in projects that involve any of these ways of working:

  • Projects we can all learn from

  • Less popular  work

  • Projects that might have a big impact

  • Cross-theme working.

Read more about ways of working here

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