Public Engagement

Community Connections Grant Scheme

With the decision not to hold the Festival of Communities this year, we are providing an alternative opportunity for Queen Mary staff and students to develop and sustain relationships with local residents and community groups through our Community Connections grant scheme.

The Community Connections grant scheme is designed to enable those a Queen Mary to create/adapt activities which bring people together: generating conversations around these shared experiences within our communities.

Funding of up to £500 per Queen Mary project is available to create new or adapt existing engagement activities. These activities could be in response to a community need, a desire to bring neighbours in a building/street together to share an experience, or planning for a celebratory event when COVID-19 restrictions allow.

The Community Connections grant scheme is open until 5pm, Thursday 15 April 

Criteria and Eligibility

Applications to the Community Connections Grant Scheme should:

  • Look to strengthen connections between Queen Mary University of London and community groups and/or residents.
    • Where possible activities should be linked to Queen Mary research, education, or other strategic projects but projects outside of this scope will be considered.
  • Focus on engaging communities local to Queen Mary campuses: within the 7 east London boroughs (Tower Hamlets, Hackney, Newham, Waltham Forest, Redbridge, Barking and Dagenham, Havering), the City of London, Westminster, or Islington.
    • Whilst these are our priority boroughs, activities that engage with communities in other London boroughs will be considered
  • Be designed for either remote online, remote offline (e.g. activity packs delivered to households), or face-to-face formats. 
    • For those considering face-to-face activity, social distancing and COVID-19 safety measures must be incorporated into your plan. As these activities are reliant on future Government guidelines allowing for this, you should propose an alternative delivery mode in case face-to-face activities are not possible before August.
  • Be shown to take into account the needs of their communities in the design of the activities (formats and methods); particularly in relation to digital inequalities within our local communities.

Applications are welcome from across all Queen Mary Schools, Institutes and Professional Services teams.

Applications are open to both staff members and students at Queen Mary though applications from Undergraduate students will need to either be supported by a recognised student group of Queen Mary Students' Union (QMSU) or a member of staff from their School in order for funds to be accessed. 

If successful, the funding will need to be spent by the end of the current financial year on July 31 2021. 

Funding considerations

You can apply to cover the costs of the following:

  • Activity materials and consumables - anything you need to develop and run your activity.
  • Take home items – for visitors to develop their interest in the topic/learning in the future.
  • Decorations – to make your activity area look eye-catching and welcoming for visitors. E.g. table cloths, activity banner, posters, labels, balloons, bunting etc.
  • Specialist equipment purchase (if cannot be provided or supplied elsewhere at Queen Mary).
  • Equipment to enable social distancing within your activities

You cannot apply for funds to cover the cost of staff time to develop or deliver activities.

Advice and Support

The Centre for Public Engagement are happy to provide advice and support for those who wish to apply to the Community Connections Fund. 

You can book in to one of our Virtual Advice Surgery sessions for 30 minutes of 1-2-1 support with a member of the team to discuss and develop your ideas further. We are running an additional Advice Surgery specificially for applicants to the 'Community Connections' scheme at 10am-12noon on Thursday 8 April.

You can also email the team at with any questions about the process that you have.

How to apply

To apply to the scheme, please submit your proposal using the Google Form below. To plan your responses, you can see the full list of questions in this document, and you can then copy and paste them into the googleform below.

Community Connections grant scheme - Application Form Template [DOC 27KB]

We are unable to accept any applications not submitted through this form. Please note: this form will not load in Safari browsers