As young people face up to today’s challenges, we know the DofE has never been more needed.

In line with our strategy, Youth Without Limits, we are committed to ensuring that DofE is open to all young people and that our participants reflect the most diverse generation of young people ever.

To tackle barriers to participation, we are working with strategic partners within the youth and sport sectors to establish a sustainable DofE offer throughout their network, supported by funding from the Department for Culture, Media, and Sport (DCMS).

This funding is now open for applications until December 2024. The fund offers grant funding of up to £10,250 for eligible youth and sport sector organisations to set up and deliver the DofE, including the enrolment costs for marginalised young people across the UK.

We not only offer grant funding but support organisations every step of the way. This includes a dedicated member of staff working collaboratively to support everything from training, mentoring, reporting, and monitoring the progress of young people on their DofE journey.

What is the funding criteria?

Eligibility Criteria for Organisations

1. The organisation must form part of a national or regional network of not-for-profit organisations supporting young people.

2. Organisations/groups must deliver in England.

3. Organisations must be incorporated, and they must be at least five Trustees/Directors for organisations registered within England. We will consider organisations with 3 or 4 directors/trustees on a case-by-case basis.

4. Organisations/groups must be not-for-profit organisation and be registered with Companies House or the Charities Commission. Types of eligible organisations include;

  • Charities or Charitable Incorporated Organisations (CIOs) registered with the Charities Commission
  • Charitable companies, registered with both Companies House and the Charity Commission
  • Community organisations who Companies Limited by Guarantee (CLG) with no share capital and are registered with Companies House
  • Community Interest Companies (CICs) which are not established or conducted for private gain: any surplus or assets are used exclusively for the benefit of the community

5. Organisations may be required to submit a copy of their governing document, which shows a charitable / not-for-profit purpose.

6. Organisations/groups must have been established for at least one year

7. Organisations/groups must have a bank / building society account in the organisation’s name, with two or more unrelated Director/Trustee signatories

8. Organisations have produced annual accounts (or the organisation was set up less than 15 months ago and hasn’t produced annual accounts yet). Please note- we will ask for copies of your full profit and loss accounts and a copy of your audit or independent examiners report, if available.

9. Any reserves accrued by the organisation are used to support the organisation (i.e. not-for-profit)

10. Organisations must have a dissolution clause in place.

11. Organisations/groups must have appropriate minimum standards in place to adhere to DofE licencing requirements. This includes:

  • Be a legal entity (be incorporated)
  • A safeguarding and/or child protection policy
  • A health and safety policy
  • Insurance documentation
  • Equal opportunities policy
  • An offsite visits policy (or similar).

12. We will also need details of two contacts as part of your application, one of whom will be the legally responsible contact for any grant awarded; these must be unconnected.

13. The organisation is able to contribute to the reduced DofE licence fee (Year 1 will be fully covered by the grant, and 50% in Year 2).


*Please note that all applications will undergo a due diligence check and organisations will be asked to produce documentation, including safeguarding policies and profit and loss accounts. We will review the information supplied alongside publicly available information supplied alongside publicly available information. This is to make sure that the information is correct and there are no significant risks we can identify when awarding grants.

How much is the funding for and what can it be used for?

Grants of up to £10,250 for partner organisations are available to help get set up and support their young people take part. The funding can be tailored to the organisation’s needs. Examples of what would be included in the funding packages are:

  • A contribution to the DofE Licence Fee or Operating Authority fee
  • Funded bronze, silver and gold participation places
  • Bursaries for Adult Leader Training
  • Sectional Equipment Support
  • Internal Staff Costs
  • Expedition Bursary Funding

Each organisation will receive dedicated support from an Operations Officer to help them get the programme up and running with support every step of the way.

Action Plan

The Operations Officer and incoming DofE Manager at each partner organisation will need to create an Action Plan, which sets out how the Licensed Organisation or Centre will develop their provision over the first year, which will then be updated and re-submitted as part of the annual reporting requirements for the grant. This will need to be submitted to the Project Manager within eight weeks of receiving funding.

Annual Reporting

We will ask you to work with us to complete an interim and annual monitoring report. The reports will ask how your organisation has used the grant to support young people from marginalised backgrounds to do their DofE and the impact this has had. We will also ask for a financial report, for which you will need to supply copies of receipts and invoices.

To find out more, and to see if your organisation is eligible, please contact your Operations Officer or Lucy Fisher, Partnerships Manager.

Read about DofE participants who have been positively impacted by the Access Without Limits Funding:

DofE enabled Summer to discover a new side of herself READ MORE
Naeema’s confidence grows through her DofE READ MORE
DofE allows Mia to share her love of books with others READ MORE

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