FAQs for our Work Pathways open call

Find answers to frequently asked questions when applying for our WorkPathways Programme Award.

Question about the online application form?

If your question is specifically about the online application form, see the technical FAQs for online applications below. 


What type of organisations can apply for this Programme Award?

Programme Awards are available for registered charities, credit unions, housing associations, and asset-locked community interest companies.

Will you accept applications from Partnerships?

Yes, we believe that Funders have a responsibility to support collaborative approaches. We welcome applications from partnerships although would expect the lead organisation, even if working with smaller partners, to meet all of our eligibility criteria.

Do I need to have a certain amount of annual income to apply?

Yes, organisations must have an annual income of more than £100K in their latest financial year.

What is ‘annual income’ and how do I determine this?

Annual income is based on the money you received in the last financial year, as presented in your most recent set of annual accounts.

Our organisation had an annual income of less than £100K in our latest financial year, can we still apply?

Organisations with an annual income of less than £100K a year are not currently eligible for our Programme Awards.

Our Programme Awards are available to organisations with an income over £100K per year. For more information see here.

To be kept informed on future funding opportunities, please sign up to our mailing list.

How many years of funding can I apply for with a Programme Award?

We can provide project funding for up to a maximum of five years.

How much can I ask for?

Organisations can apply for up to £250k per year. Usually, Programme Awards will be for between £20k to £500k in total as a whole for up to five years.

What type of work is not likely to be in scope for this award?

The following is not an exhaustive list but provides broad examples of the type of work we would be unable to fund within Programme Awards: 

  • Projects that would be eligible for support through Our Funds. 
  • Work that is not relevant to our Work Pathways theme.
  • Direct delivery of services, unless this is testing and demonstrating a new approach which has a good potential to lead to wider change and is in line with our three priority areas.
  • Unrestricted funding (though we do encourage full cost recovery and will fund a proportionate share of organisational overheads through Programme Awards).
  • Wider interventions and approaches which do not have a clear connection to delivering big change that lasts on tackling poverty and trauma in Scotland.
  • Applications which are about improving or changing internal organisational capacity, capabilities or structure (unless there is a clear link to how this will improve outcomes for people experiencing poverty and/or trauma).
  • Work which solely seeks to build understanding of the causes of poverty and trauma as opposed to delivering solutions on poverty and trauma. 
  • Restricted funding for capital projects. 

How do I apply?

We are asking all applicants to complete the online application form. However, if you have any communication support needs that make reading or completing an application form difficult or impossible, please contact us to discuss alternative ways you can apply.

I already have a grant from the Robertson Trust, can I still apply for a Programme Award?

Subject to meeting our published eligibility criteria for our Programme Awards, yes you can apply.

Organisations already in receipt of another award from the Robertson Trust are eligible to apply through Programme Awards as long as the proposed work is different or additional to what we already fund.

What is the difference between your Programme Award and Open Funds?

The nature of the work supported through Our Funds does include change proposals, particularly now in response to the impact of COVID. We are seeing a growth, especially through Large Grants, of exciting work being led by organisations pushing for policy and practice changes. However, as you will see from our website, Our Funds cover a much broader range of activities, including ongoing service delivery.  Our Programme Awards will focus solely on change proposals, or in other words 'big change that will last'. Applications are also open to a broader range of organisations who would not be eligible to apply through our funds, such as Housing Associations, Credit Unions and Asset Locked Community Interest Companies.

What do you mean by 'big change that lasts'?

Some refer to this as a theory of change and/or logic models. We want to fund work through our Programme Awards that can deliver big change that lasts on poverty and trauma. We want to fund work that has a clear, thought-through and demonstrable potential to lead to significant impact on poverty and trauma at scale. This could either be in general, across low-income people and families overall or for particular population groups or geographical areas at greater risk of poverty and trauma in Scotland.  

For us, big change that lasts means delivering systems change, strategic change and/or long-term change. Put simply we want to fund work over the near-term that has the best possible chance of delivering significant impact on poverty and trauma over the long-term. Applications that can demonstrate a clear link between the proposed work and a long-term impact on poverty and trauma in this thematic area will be most likely to be successful. This includes thinking through the links and the logic between the first and next steps of the work and the ultimate aim, the people and organisations that will need to act to deliver that aim, the activity that might enable them to do so, and the partnerships and coalitions of support needed to maximise the chance of that happening.  

Technical FAQs for online application forms

The link to the online application form isn’t working.

Before getting in touch, we would ask that you check your internet connection and firewall settings first and try opening the link in a different browser, such as Chrome or Firefox. If you are still experiencing problems let us know at programmes@therobertsontrust.org.uk.

I’ve completed some of the online form but can’t send it right now. Can I save this and return to it later?

Yes! Simply click on the ‘Save my progress and resume later’ button at the top of the first page of the application form. Please make sure you enter a valid email address.

I saved a draft online form and want to resume this. How do I do this?

When you save an application to resume later, we’ll send you an email to confirm that your draft application has been saved. This email includes a link to resume your form at any time. You can also click on the link to a new application from our website and click on the ‘resume a previously saved form’ link at the top of the page.

I’m trying to resume a previously saved online application, but it says it doesn’t recognise my details.

Input the email and password you used to save the online form and click the resume this form button. Do not hit enter.

I’ve forgotten the password I used to save an online application I hadn’t completed. How do I retrieve this?

When you save an application to resume later, we’ll send you an email to confirm that your draft application has been saved. This email includes a link to resume your form at any time. If you forget your password, click on this link, select ‘Forgot your password?’ and enter the email address you used to save the form. We’ll then send you an email to reset your password.

What does the red asterisk at the end of a question mean?

This means you must answer that question in order to complete and send us your application. When you hit send, it will tell you if any fields haven’t been completed or have been completed incorrectly.

I answered ‘no’ to a question and it said you cannot consider my application. What does this mean?

You must be able to answer ‘yes’ to certain eligibility questions within the online forms, such as having a minimum of three unconnected members on your Board or Committee. If you answer ‘no’ to any of these questions a message will appear explaining why we cannot consider your application. This also means you won’t be able to complete the application.

If you answered ‘no’ by mistake, simply click on the ‘yes’ answer to the question. Please note however that you must meet these criteria in order to apply and that we will check this as part of our assessment of your application.

I’m getting an error message on the amount field in the form but I’m not sure why.

All amount fields should be numbers only, no pound signs, commas or decimal points.

I’m receiving an error message on the contact details section of the application saying the contacts must be different. Why is this?

We ask for details of two contacts in the application form, one must be a Trustee or someone who can authorise your organisation to apply. The other should be someone who is able to answer any questions about the application and who acts as the main point of contact for this.

We also ask for this to make sure any emails we send, for example confirming receipt of your application and our decision on this, are received by your organisation. You must input details of two different contacts in order to apply.

I uploaded a file by mistake. How do I remove this?

Click on the ‘upload file’ button again and upload the correct file.

I’m having trouble uploading large files. What should I do?

You can send us any additional documentation in support of your application to programmes@therobertsontrust.org.uk.  You can upload a blank word document for any mandatory file upload questions if you need to.

I’ve received an error message saying the maximum allowed file size may have been reached and I can’t submit the online form. What should I do?

Any documents you attach to your application must not exceed 25MB. If you receive this error message, you will need to return to the form and remove any large documents, which you can send to us at programmes@therobertsontrust.org.uk. Please quote the grant reference for your application in the email.

I’d like to print/save a copy of my completed application. How do I do this?

When you click Send, a preview of your completed application will appear. Scroll down to the bottom of the page and click on the ‘Print this page’ link. You can save a copy of your form as a PDF and print it. We will, however, also send you a PDF copy of your application with our acknowledgement email.

What happens after I send my online application?

It can take a couple of minutes for this to process, so please be patient and do not hit refresh on your browser. A page will appear to let you know we have received your application when this has gone through. We’ll ask you if you want to complete a short survey with your feedback on the application process and confirm that you can close your browser.