Big Potential

Big Potential, a Big Lottery Fund grant fund, will deliver approximately £220m of grant funding to eligible VCSE organisations with the aim of improving the sustainability, capacity and scale of VCSE organisations in order that they may deliver greater social impact. The programme aims to raise awareness of the social investment market and support VCSEs who want to prepare themselves for social investment or winning contracts.

On the Breakthrough Programme, eligible VCSE organisations will be able to access specialist one-to-one support from the Big Potential Programme partners before making an application for a grant to undertake more in-depth investment readiness work with one of Big Potential’s approved providers.

There are two different types of grant:

  • Preliminary Grants
  • Investments Plan Grants

VCSEs can apply for Preliminary Grants of between £20,000 to £30,000. Preliminary Grants are available to VCSEs at the initial stage of their social investment journey that are yet to determine what type of social investment will be appropriate for their needs.

Preliminary grant holders typically need support to identify suitable and appropriate sources of finance as well as receiving support to identify and assess plans to aid their future sustainability.

Furthermore, VCSEs can apply for up to £50,000 in the form of an Investment Plan Grant. These are available to VCSEs that already have a social investment proposition and know what the deal might look like.

Investment Plan grant holders typically require support to help finalise and articulate the business proposition in such a way that will be attractive to external social investors / finance organisations

VCSEs can apply for both types of grant but we would not expect any one organisation to receive more than £75,000 in total.

One Economy provides up-front support, free of charge, to help clients register and apply for Big Potential grants without any contractual commitment.