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Apply For Funding

From the everyday to the transformational, we work in partnership to support you to excel for everyone who accesses or delivers NHS Lothian services; patients, their families, staff or communities.

We support colleagues across NHS Lothian to help improve the care and experience of patients in our hospitals and local communities, enable innovation, and support initiatives that enhance wellbeing and develop the careers of NHS Lothian staff.

We have a number of grant programmes available that NHS Lothian staff can apply to. You can find out more about different funding options by following the links below:

Funding Options

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Small Grants

Up to £5,000 available to support patient-centred projects.

Climate Challenge Grants

Up to £5,000 available for NHS Lothian staff who want to take action to reduce climate change.

Specific and Ward Funds

If you’re an NHS Lothian member of staff, get in touch with us to find out how we can support you and your team to drive forward a new project.
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The Elsie Inglis Staff Development Award

‘The Elsies’ is a charitable fund which seeks to support individual NHS Lothian staff to develop their potential through learning
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Staff Wellbeing Microgrants

Grants of up to £500 available to fund activities that support the health and wellbeing of staff.

Impact, Improvement and Learning

At the heart of everything we do is making a real difference for patients. We want to be able to demonstrate how the funding we provide translates to better experiences and care of patients in hospital and communities and how it aligns to our mission of having a positive impact on health in Lothian. To enable us to do this, we’ve developed an evaluation framework.

Our framework adopts an outcomes-based approach that uses indicators to measure what has changed for individuals and services. The outcomes and related indicators will vary from project to project. For example, new equipment might mean reduced waiting times, a less invasive procedure could result in quicker recovery, or a refurbished child-friendly waiting room could lead to less anxiety and a more positive experience for young patients. By measuring these changes, we can see how our funding directly impacts the lives of patients in Lothian.

Using this framework can help strengthen your funding application. So, when completing your application, remember to tell us not only what you want support for but also what difference (the outcomes) that investment will make and how you will know (indicators). Building evaluation into the project design will allow us to assess its effectiveness in achieving its stated goals. By prioritising evaluation from the outset, we can move beyond simply completing a project to demonstrating positive change and continuous learning.

NHS Lothian Charity Evaluation Framework

Consider how you could strengthen your application by incorporating elements from our Evaluation Framework into your application for funding.

Frequently asked questions

  • A Fund Steward can authorise expenditure from a fund if it is for an item or service that costs under £5,000
  • All the usual procurement and H&S policies and procedures apply
  • The item or service must meet the Fund’s purpose and the Charity’s funding rules
  • If unsure about who the Fund Steward is, a Fund’s purpose or the Charity’s rules contact: [email protected]

  • Think about what would make a difference
  • Complete a ‘Funding request – £5k and over’ form (request from [email protected])
  • Fund Steward endorses the application by signing the form
  • Service/site management endorses the application by signing the form
  • Send form to NHS Lothian Charity
  • Charity assesses and scores
  • Funding released if approved

Once the Fund Steward has authorised spend:

  • Place an order through the NHS Lothian Charity PECOS, via travel team or petty cash
  • Order checked by Charity Finance Team
  • Order approved by NHS Lothian Charity
  • Items arrive, travel booked or petty cash released
  • Project started, NHS Lothian Charity recognised for funding where possible
  • Brief evaluation required

Please note that the Charity might contact you to do a case study on the project to share with supporters.

Alternatives are available if there is no fund or insufficient money in a fund.

  • Elsie Inglis Fund – for staff development, training and learning
  • Staff Wellbeing Microgrants – for staff wellbeing activities and items
  • Small Grants – for items or activities with benefits for patients.

Contact us about your idea and we can help work out the best route to get it funded: [email protected]

Still got questions?

How teams have used charitable funding to support patients

Teams from NHS Lothian Charity and Sunndach and Calareidh standing beside the new adapted minibuses

Transforming the lives of children by opening up a world of adventures

We are delighted to have supported the teams at Sunndach and Calareidh to purchase new, specially adapted minibuses to allow young patients with complex medical needs to participate in social activities and excursions.

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The East Lothian Palliative Care team with the Bunny Buddies

Bunny Buddies: A Comforting Cuddle During Difficult Times

The East Lothian Palliative Care Team have introduced ‘Bunny Buddies’ to provide a source of comfort and help families dealing with loss and grief start difficult conversations.

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Building for the Future: Supporting a Legacy of Patient-Centred Care at the Edinburgh Cancer Centre

We are delighted to have supported the teams at the Edinburgh Cancer Centre with their ongoing programme of works and their holistic approach to patient care.

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NHS Staff writing on the chalk board in the SALT Rooms at East Lothian Community Hospital

Transforming Children’s Speech and Language Therapy Rooms at East Lothian Community Hospital

We have continued our programme of art and therapeutic design to improve patient experience at East Lothian Community Hospital. The latest project has created bright, stimulating Speech and Language Therapy (SLT) rooms to support children on their communication journey.

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