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Westfield East Bank Creative Futures Fund

Westfield East Bank Creative Futures Fund is an ambitious five-year programme that aims to invest £10 million into the local communities of Newham, Tower Hamlets, Hackney and Waltham Forest, supported by retail destination Westfield Stratford City.

This flagship project will provide new jobs, learning, training and educational programmes through the means of arts, culture, innovation, public realm and creative placemaking.

The programme aims to transform and catalyse the lives and careers of people in East London by putting funding, resources and support straight into local people’s hands.

Our community grant strand offers the following grant schemes:

Each year we have evolved the design of the programme with feedback taken from our impact evaluation and our ever-growing capacity building network.

Due to this, the application process for successive years is continually modified to ensure the outcomes and impact has a stronger focus on area needs and takes a participatory awarding approach.

Year 5

The Year 5 Community Grant Scheme aims to support local diverse-led organisations and individuals to create new jobs, learning, skills, training and educational programmes through the means of arts, culture, innovation, public realm and creative placemaking. The scheme is part of the Westfield East Bank Creative Futures Fund, a pioneering five-year programme that aims to invest £10 million into the local communities of Hackney, Newham, Tower Hamlets and Waltham Forest.

Unlike previous years, Year 5’s community grants have been combined into one strand with a simplified Expressions of Interest (EOI) process.

We will accept EOIs for Year 5 for applications up to £20,000. There is a total pot of up to £200,000. The portal for EOI opens on Monday 22 July 2024 and closes at 12pm noon on Friday 20 September 2024.

To be eligible, all projects must address at least one of four key themes:

  • employment opportunities
  • learning opportunities
  • youth support
  • business and entrepreneurship support.

Applicants must demonstrate at least three short, medium, or long-term outcomes aligned to the impact framework originally developed by the Foundation’s grantee partners and local community members. Successful grantees will also participate in peer-led training, networking, and evaluation workshops.

Year 5 community grant-funded projects must run for 6-12 months from January to December 2025.

Capacity Building Programme

For Year 5 of our Westfield East Bank Creative Futures Fund, we are once again hosting a Capacity Building Programme, in partnership with award-winning social entrenpeneur Lisa Stepanovic.

The Foundation aims to make the fund as accessible as possible. If you haven’t signed up to the Capacity Building Programme, this popular programme is free for all new and previous applicants and can make a great difference for applicants both in terms of application advice and practical support and sharing of best practice.

The programme offers free workshops and a Whatsapp network and is open to anyone living, working or studying in Hackney, Newham, Tower Hamlets or Waltham Forest.

We encourage you to join this programme by emailing capacitybuilding.ffl@outlook.com

Grant Guidance workshops

  • Wednesday 4 September 6.30-8.30pm — New guidance workshop
  • Monday 9 September 1-2.30pm — New guidance workshop
  • Friday 13 September 5.30-7.00pm — New guidance workshop

Booking links will soon be available via Eventbrite.

Access Support and Help with Flexigrant

For access support please contact grants@future.london

We have an Easy to Read versions of our Guidance Notes on our grant scheme pages.

To find out our funding news and opportunities, please sign up to our newsletter: http://eepurl.com/gF6X3z.

Funding Themes

For all four of the community grants schemes, at the heart of your project there must be a core commitment to one or more of the following:

  • Employment opportunities
    • Will your project provide employment opportunities for local people, including access to paid work experience/internships, access to apprenticeships or gaining access to jobs?
  • Learning opportunities
    • Will your project provide opportunities and/or mobility of progresion through learning and training opportunities for local people, including accessing life-long learning opportunities from early learning, schools through to late career and post retirement and/or will the project offer bespoke career and higher education path support, training,  and secondments?
  • Young people
    • Will your project have a young person led approach with particular provision for local young people to access broader skills development opportunities, careers workshops and related learning and/or one-to-one coaching and mentoring?
  • Business and entrepreneur support
    • Will your project provide local people with the opportunity to have business and/or entrepreneur support including freelance, business and entrepreneur set up, development and training?

Outcomes (Impact Framework)

We appreciate these four overarching areas are a broad spectrum, so to aid understanding of outcomes expected through the grants, we have developed a user-centred process.

Outcomes are the project’s short, medium or long-term goals that will lead to a meaningful impact for communities in the local boroughs. Applicants will be asked to identify a set number of outcomes that their project will achieve. The number of outcomes expected will be based on the grant scheme you are applying for.

We have provided a list of 13 short, medium and long-term outcomes to be selected.

Short Term Outcomes Medium/Long Term Outcomes
  • Participants gain technical/sector- specific and/or creative skills
  • Increased employability of participants
  • Participants gain essential skills
  • Increased capacity for innovation and entrepreneurship
  • Participants grow their networks and awareness of local opportunities
  • Increased diversity in the creative/entrepreneurial sector in the boroughs
  • Participants gain confidence in their potential and self-initiative
  • More diverse audiences engage with the cultural sector and benefit from community assets/available services
  • Participants are better equipped to process difficult emotions
  • Participants act as agents of change within the local community
  • Participants are equipped to act as agent of change in their boroughs
  • Organisations and schools integrate creative approaches within their projects
  • Organisations and schools are exposed to creative approaches to wellbeing

 

Marketing and Press for Grantees

If you are a Westfield East Bank Creative Futures Fund grantee, we have a Marketing and Press Guidance section, which has further information and download links for logos.

 

Evaluation Resources

Download our WEBCFF Impact Framework, co-designed by the Fund’s grantees.

 

Funded Projects Case Studies

Watch our latest film featuring our Year 2 grantees Eastside, Loop Labs and True Cadence.

The film was produced and directed by Chris Baker with Editor Will Cole and Colourist Harvey Gibson.

 

 

 

Projects We’ve Supported

Year 4

In December 2023, we awarded a total of £560,000 to 26 projects.

This includes:

  • 9 Large Grant Scheme projects awarded £382,098
  • 12 Medium Grant Scheme projects awarded £155,752
  • 5 Small Grant Scheme projects awarded £22,150

Year 3

In January 2023, we awarded a total of £668,711 to 37 projects.

This includes:

  • 10 Large Grant Scheme projects (£394,225)
  • 14 Medium Grant Scheme projects (£209,864)
  • 13 Small Grant Scheme projects (£64,622)

In 2022, we awarded £786k to 11 Capital Grant Scheme projects.

Year 2

Year 2 of the Westfield East Bank Creative Futures Fund saw the following grants awarded:

The Fund awarded a total of £1,351,194 to 82 community projects from the Fund’s community strand, consisting of the Small, Medium, Large and Capital Grant Schemes.

Year 2 was designed with evaluation and feedback from Year 1 grantees to ensure that the process is accessible, transparent and allows applicants to make informed decisions, follow a simple applications process and gain additional support when needed.

Year 1

Year 1 of the Westfield East Bank Creative Futures Fund saw the following grants awarded:

The Fund awarded £660,000 to 36 community projects from the Small, Medium and Large Grant Scheme, benefiting over 7,000 people.

Read our full list of Year 1 Community Strand grantees.

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Please note this grant scheme is now closed

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