What is the Little Acts of Kindness Fund?
Our fund offers financial support for all registered pupils and students attending our academies.
The fund supplements families who need support in paying for:
- Curriculum trips and year group residential (up to 100% of the cost)
- Other educational visits and trips
- School uniform, shoes or sports/PE kit
- School meals
- Educational equipment
- Travel to and from academies
- Expenses to attend seminars, interviews or work experience placements
- Visits to universities
All payments are discretionary and if awarded, do not need to be repaid.
Who is eligible?
All requests will be considered against the rules and eligibility criteria detailed below.
Pupils who have/had free school meals at any time in the last six years and Post-16 students who meet the eligibility criteria for the 16-19 Bursary Fund, are still able to make an application for financial support.
However, funding will firstly be awarded from either the Pupil Premium Grant or the 16-19 Bursary Fund. If these funding sources have reached their maximum limit, successful applications will be supported from our fund.
Your academy will consider requests for support from the fund if the following applies:
- Pupils and students living alone outside the family home
- Pupils and students receiving free school meals at any time in the last six years
- Pupils and students in families with very low incomes
- Pupils and students in families suffering temporary financial hardship due to redundancy
- Pupils and students with disabilities
- Pupils and students who are or have been in care/foster care
- Pupils and students who have no access to Government support
- Pupils and students who have been subject to other exceptional circumstances
Pupils and students may be eligible for grants from the fund if:
- Household income is below £25,000
- A pupil or student whose parents are currently claiming other means-tested benefits including: Income Support, Working Tax Credit/ Child Tax Credit, Income Based Employment and Support Allowance (ESA), Universal Credit – who is not entitled to free school meals
- At the decision of the Headteacher or the Trust’s Head of Finance, any pupil or student who does not fall under the categories listed above, but consider themselves to be in financial hardship
Proof of benefit is required. Proof must be in letter form and:
- Must have been issued within the last six months. Where applicable please provide a copy of the Full Tax Credit Award Notice (TC602).
- Must show the given family address
- Must be included with the grant application
Bank statements, incapacity, housing and council tax benefit are not valid proof.
Letters of proof of benefits can be provided by:
- Inland Revenue Child Benefit Office 0300 200 3100
- Inland Revenue Tax Credits 0345 300 3900
- Jobcentre Plus
- Jobseekers, Income Support, Employment and Support Allowance
0800 169 0310
- Universal Credit 0800 328 9344
- Asylum Help UK 0808 8000 630
How do I apply?
Once completed, send this along with any supporting evidence to your Headteacher. Your application will remain confidential and will be considered by the Headteacher based on their knowledge of your family circumstances.
For applications greater than £50, the application will be forwarded to the Trust’s Head of Finance for approval. Once approved, the application will be passed to the Trust Finance Team to action payment.
An application on behalf of a pupil or student may be submitted at any time during the academic year. It may also be possible to apply more than once, but usually only where circumstances have not changed.
All decisions are final and there is no appeals process.
To ensure fast approval for urgent needs, the Headteacher can authorise support up to and including the value of £50 without prior approval from the Head of Finance.
Final approval by the Head of Finance for support over the value of £50 will ensure the fair distribution of funds between the 36 schools within the Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic Multi-Academy Trust. Final approval will be provided within 10 school days of the Head of Finance receiving an application to use the fund.
How will I receive payment?
Payments will be made in the following ways:
- On receipt of an invoice – payment will be made directly to the supplier through the Trust’s financial system
- On the production of a receipt – a refund will be issued by BACS directly into the claimant’s bank account. Once the payment is approved, every effort will be made to process payments quickly. It may take up to seven days for the refund to reach the claimant’s bank account.