News May 2024

Work Pathways open call now open

We are pleased to launch our latest Programme Award open call, with a focus on improving job quality to tackle in-work poverty in Scotland.

Please note that this Work Pathways open call sits separately to Our Funds. The upcoming pause to Our Funds on 31st May will not impact this open call.

With a view to preventing and reducing future rates of poverty and trauma in Scotland, this open call has emerged from extensive stakeholder engagement within our Work Pathways theme over the past year.


The priority area for this call is improving job quality to tackle in-work poverty in Scotland, within which we are particularly interested in:

  • employer-focused approaches, as well as approaches that have a joint focus on the employer
  • supporting employers to embed fair work practices across Scotland
  • improving career progression, skills investment and job design
  • removing barriers to earning more (where people want to)
  • strengthening worker power, rights and enforcement.

Please note that we fund a range of employability projects through our other funds. We are therefore not seeking applications for employability approaches focused only on getting people into work, or that end when people get into work. Instead, the call is aimed at improving job quality and tackling in-work poverty for those already in work.

Programme Award applications are more likely to be successful for work with the highest potential for delivering big change that lasts on tackling poverty and trauma in Scotland. This includes work such as:

  1. Feasibility and development projects
  2. Test and demonstration projects
  3. Research projects with a clear and strong link to delivering change
  4. Campaigning, mobilising, policy and influencing projects

The fund offers project-restricted revenue funding for up to five years, usually between £50K and £500K in total, and up to £250k per year. We expect to spend up to £2M through this call, subject to level of demand and nature of proposals we receive. It is open to charities, Community Interest Companies, Housing Associations and Credit Unions whether alone or in partnership (including with other types of organisations) .

The closing date for stage one applications is Friday, 7th June (noon). For full details about the open call and the application process, click here.

Would you like to talk about a potential application to this open call with our team?

We have several 30-minute slots available to book to discuss ideas in an informal enviroment. Click here to book.

'Big change that lasts'

Last year, we ran a webinar looking at what we mean by 'big change that lasts' for our programme awards (originally recorded for our Education Pathways open call). While the full webinar can be viewed here, we have also provided two bitesize snippets below looking at the definition and examples of big change projects.