How To Directory

How to Apply for Funding from Union Southampton

To apply for funding, select the 'Apply for Funding' option from the Student Groups admin page at

Grant funding, often known simply as “student groups funding”, is funding provided by the Union directly to affiliated student groups.

Grant funding is not designed to cover the day-to-day running costs of the group. These should be covered by membership fees, fundraising or from other sources. Grant funding is designed to cover the costs of resources, specific pieces of equipment or trips that wouldn’t otherwise be able to be provided by the group.

On average, the ratio of funding requests to available funds is 5:1 – for every £5 requested, only £1 is available to be allocated. This necessitates a stringent application and decision-making process when it comes to the allocation of funds.

Is your group eligible?

  • You need to be an student group affiliated to Union Southampton
  • You need to be up to date with any of your support package obligations
  • You need to have at least the minimum number of members for your chosen support package at registered on your group hub.
  • Your groups committee needs to have discussed the funding request and be in agreement with your application.
  • Your group should not have a negative bank balance.
  • Groups must have a bank account for your Student Group (since if you get awarded money it needs to be paid to somewhere). Please let us know if your bank details have changed (if Union Southampton has your bank details from previous years you do not need to supply them again).


What your group can request funding for...

  • Funding has been split into zones.
  • Funding is then split again into pots. The funding pots you can apply for will depend on the support package you have selected.
  • There is no limit to how much funding you can apply for.
  1. Essential Funding – This fund is to fund essential items/things to enable the groups to achieve their main aims. For example: chess boards for the chess society.
  2. Competition Funding–This fund is to support Student Groups when competing at a Regional level, National level or above. E.g. County sporting competition, British universities competition (BUCS), national festivals.
  3. Tours Funding - This fund is to help subsidise tours that Student Groups organise for their members and will be issued in the form of grants. The definition of a tour is a group travelling somewhere to perform the activity stated in their core aims. E.g. A brass band tour.
  4. Development Funding – Each zone will have development funding pots against the zones aims, in October the zone will set their development goals against each aim. They may offer out grants to student groups to help achieve these aims. 
  5. Events Funding - This category is dedicated to funding for events organised by student groups. This will allow better support to be provided by the Union in delivering these events.
  6. Capital Funding – This fund is to help buy equipment for your student group which will be a long term investment to its members and is likely to be particularly large or expensive. E.g. new cameras for SUSUtv. Please note there will be a slightly differnet application process for capital funding.

The funding application process...

  • Funding decisions are made by representatives from your relevant Zone committee.
  • You would normally apply for the majority of your funding in the first round. Once all the money from a particular funding pot had gone it will be closed to future rounds of applications.
  • If you were granted less money than you applied for or think the decision was unfair then you are welcome to amend and improve your application and resubmit during the next funding round.

Here is a rough timeline, this can be used as a guide, but will depend each year on term and meeting dates. Please note that the dates for Round One have moved to be earlier than in previous years, allowing you to get funding in in time for the start of term and Bunfight.



Round   1 (main allocation)


    Student Groups receive notification of funding round opening.


    Deadline for submission of funding requests


    Zone Committees allocate funding.


    Student Groups are informed of the allocations. Payments are made in August and September



Round   2 TBC by Student Groups Committee 


 Student Groups Funding Open.

TBC by Student Groups Committee 

 Funding Applications Close

TBC by Student Groups Committee 

 Zone Committees Meetings Scheduled

TBC by Student Groups Committee 

 Student Groups are informed of allocations Payments are made a week     or two after decisions

Round   3 

TBC by Student Groups Committee 

    Student Groups   complete funding requests.

TBC by Student Groups Committee 

    Zone Committee   approve allocations.

TBC by Student Groups Committee 

    Student Groups are informed of the allocations. Payments are made a week or two after decisions




How will your application be judged?

Applications are processed in accordance with the Resource Allocation Procedure, as approved by Student Groups Committee. Although the procedure goes into details about resource allocation in general, the following principles apply particularly to funding allocations:

  • Whether your application helps towards the Zones aims and objectives. They may be as wide and general or may be really specific. 
  • On how your application will benefit your members (and how many of them it will benefit)
  • Whether there are any obvious more appropriate alternatives.
  • Whether an application could be partially funded and achieve similar results i.e. the committee may choose to grant a reduced amount or for only some of the items requested.
  • Whether amendments/conditions of the funding should be implemented e.g. that the group submit a report after the event, find a cheaper quote or do a joint venture with another group
  • The groups input (whether this is financial or in another ways such as time and resources).


What won’t you be granted funding for?

The budgets exist to help student groups achieve their aims and objective, however, you should be aware that there are certain things that Union Southampton cannot finance. These include but are not limited to:



Social tours/social events

Tours with joint social and developmental purpose are acceptable. Social events must further the group’s aims.

Profit-making events

The Union doesn’t subsidise events that student groups will make money on (with the exception of fundraising).

Non-student campaigns

As a students’ union, Union funds must be spent on activities that directly affect the lives of our students.

Food and drink

Students should fund food and drink themselves.

Direct donations to other charities

The Union can facilitate fundraising for charities but can’t make direct donations itself.

Application that doesn’t benefit all members (including personal items)

Items should benefit members generally (current and future).

Facilities already provided by the Union (space, website hosting)

The Union provides many facilities free of charge already.

Flyers and leaflets     

As decided by all-student vote in the Annual General Meeting in 2016, the Union no longer provides funding for flyers and leaflets, as they are unsustainable forms of promotion. Consideration should instead be given to other forms of publicity.


In addition, we will not fund applications:

  • when the cost outweighs the benefit (e.g. expensive equipment that can be hired/ alternative used, hiring expensive performers)
  • If projects/items that lack detail (you need to tell us what it is, how much it is and why you want it).
  • if a group has received funding from for a similar item recently.
  • for things you have already paid for (retrospective bids).

How we decide applications

Applications will only be considered outside the funding cycle in exceptional circumstances, such as where a requirement for funding has arisen after the previous deadline for funding requests, and the event or activity is to be held before the next round. Such applications should be made in writing to the relevant Sabbatical Officer via email and must be approved by the Zone Committee, though this may be done electronically.

Applications are considered by Zone Committees at dedicated meetings to be held within two weeks of each funding application deadline. Groups will be notified of the decisions as soon as reasonably practicable.

How to spend allocated funding?

  • You will receive the funding straight into your student groups bank account.
  • You must spend the funding on the items specified in your application, if you wish to spend it on other items you must reapply.


To give your application the best chance of receiving funding follow our top tips;

  • Make sure the application form is filled in correctly and completely.
  • Be realistic, it’s very unlikely that your application for £2000 worth of glow sticks for a single event will be approved.
  • Generally, the committee like to see as many people as possible benefiting from their funding as possible so make sure you specify how many people will be involved/attend your event/use the equipment
  • Show value for money, can you buy in bulk? Can you share equipment with other groups? Have you asked different suppliers for quotes?
  • The committee is generally reluctant to repeatedly fund the same groups and/or activities so consider how you can make your group and its activities more sustainable, consider organising additional fundraising, sourcing external sponsorship or scaling down your plans to make them more manageable.
  • Remember each zone only has a limited amount of money to grant. As a rule, you should not expect funding from Union Southampton and should plan accordingly