What we don't support

We choose to focus our funding on work that we believe will deliver the greatest long-term impact and create change for the future.

We will not support work unless
  • The organisation is leading the way itself, or part of a partnership or collaboration which is aiming for transformative change
  • The work is pioneering by breaking new ground, or using tried and tested models to push things forward in a new way
  • The work is ambitious and aiming to make a long-term impact. To be funded by Esmée, it’s not enough to be keeping good things going, you need to be driving change for the future
We will not consider applications from / for:
  • Organisations with a regular annual turnover of less than £100,000*.
  • Organisations without at least three non-executive trustees or directors.
  • Grants for less than £30,000.
  • Social investments for less than £100,000 or more than £2m.
  • Work that is not legally charitable.
  • Work that does not have a direct benefit in the UK.
  • Grants to individuals.
  • Capital costs including building work, renovations, and equipment (the exclusion applies to grants only, we may make social investments for these).
  • Academic research – unless it can demonstrate real potential for practical outcomes.
  • Healthcare with a clinical basis, including medical research, hospices, counselling and therapy, arts therapy, education about and treatment for drug and alcohol misuse.
  • Work that is primarily the responsibility of statutory authorities.
  • The promotion of religion.

* We will be working with partners to identify new ideas we could support which are at an earlier stage and might not get through our applicant quiz. We will contact organisations proactively to apply for this support.


Other sources of funding help

Information on other funding sources including a comprehensive guide to fundraising for small organisations.

Find out more