Esmee Fairbairn Foundation

funding update

Aims/priorities: The Foundation launched its new strategy in October 2020 and is now providing unrestricted core and project grants for work in the following areas:

Our Natural World - Ensuring that the natural world is restored and protected, and that people benefit from that recovery.

The Foundation aims to contribute to the following key impact goals by 2030:

  • Preserved and improved species health and habitats.
  • Clean and healthy freshwater.
  • Sustainable and ethical food.

The priorities in the first five years are:

  • Peat.
  • Space for nature.
  • Freshwater.
  • Nature-friendly farming
  • Fishing in tandem with nature.

A Fairer Future - Contributing to a just and anti-racist society, where those most likely to have their rights denied have those rights protected, as well as the opportunity to speak and be heard, and have the freedom to express their creativity. The Foundation wants to shine new light on areas of need and challenge the cultures, systems and behaviours that stand in the way of change.

The Foundation aims to contribute to the following key impact goals by 2030:

  • Injustice and structural inequality is challenged and changed.
  • A new inclusive generation of leaders and artists.

The priorities in the first five years are:

  • Acting early on the root causes of problems.
  • Children and young people’s rights.
  • Young people leaving care.
  • Tackling injustice.
  • Empowering young leaders.
  • Removing barriers to creative careers.
  • Cultural education.

Creative, Confident Communities - Strengthening the bonds in communities, helping local people to build vibrant, confident places where they can fulfil their creative, human, and economic potential. Places where the local economy works better for the people who live there, where there is equality of access to arts and culture, and where communities are at the heart of change.

Who can apply? Charities and organisations that are undertaking work that is legally charitable in the UK can apply.

Organisations must have a regular annual turnover of at least £100,000 and must be properly constituted.

Grant amount: The minimum grant size is £30,000.

Applicants should apply for the amount that they need. The Foundation makes grants across a fairly wide spectrum of sizes.

Most grants are for three years or longer.

Application process: Applicants should first complete the online eligibility quiz and read the guidance notes which can be found on the Foundation's website.

They can then submit an Expression of Interest (100 words) and will hear back from the Foundation within two weeks. The Foundation will discuss the proposal with the organisation and will invite them to submit a full proposal if the project is a good fit.

Deadline:  Ongoing

Contact Information:  Tel: 020 7812 3700  Email:

Website address:


over £25,000
Charitable Company
Partnerships and Consortiums
Registered Charity
Social Enterprise
Funding Theme: 
Children and Young People