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Our Strategy and Learning

Our grants strategy includes the following objectives:

  • We work alongside children and young people and those with lived experience.
  • We remain local and community driven.
  • Our focus is on transparency and relational grant-making and management.
  • We work better together. We will partner with the CYP sector to inform our funding decisions.
  • We focus on delivering direct impact for children and young people.
  • We create broader impact through the delivery of thematic work. We align our work across the Charity with the wider BBC.

Our 2021 Strategic Priorities:

  • Sharing Power with Children & Young People:

Children and Young People will be more involved as active participants, leaders and co-producers within our work.

  • Championing and Leading on Equity, Diversity and Inclusion

We will work to develop our approach to Equity, diversity, and inclusion, embedding it in all our processes and decisions.

  • Reaching disadvantaged children and young people disproportionally impacted by COVID-19:

We will tackle the key issues impacting on already disadvantaged young people including:

  • isolation and loneliness,
  • poor mental health and wellbeing,
  •  exposure to risk or harm,
  • basic needs
  • physical wellbeing.
  • Focusing our funding on the best-placed organisations:

We will prioritise funding to organisations who:

  • have strong links to the community they serve.
  • can adapt and pivot during the pandemic
  • can connect and respond effectively to the individual needs of children and young people in their local context.

How are we using our insight and data to inform our funding priorities during the pandemic?

We have identified eight themes that show how Covid-19 is affecting children and young people:

Isolation Children and families are missing personal connections, relationships and support from trusted adults and peers outside the home.


Increased emotional wellbeing and mental health challenges: The pandemic is impacting on existing mental health and new issues are emerging for children and their parents. Anxiety, fear and stress are particular concerns.



Pressure on family relationships: Families are under pressure, from difficulties coping with stress and worry to crisis. Conflict and difficult relationships is increasing, whilst respite for children and parents is reducing.


Increased exposure to harm: Children faced increased risks both within families and outside the home, e.g. with increased time online and being unable to access safe spaces.
Basic needs are harder to meet: Children and families faced hunger and increased financial hardship. Digital access has become a basic need in lockdown.


Reduced access to education & activities: Children lacked the stimulation, development opportunities, structure & positive engagement these can bring.


Risks to physical wellbeing: Children’s physical wellbeing is at risk through reduced nutrition or physical activity for fitness, for those with health conditions and from the pandemic itself
Concern for the future: Children, young people and families are concerned for the future, such as education transitions, loss of jobs or risks to job prospects and financial stability.



These themes are being experienced by many different groups of children who already face challenges in their lives. They span all ages from babies and toddlers right through to older teenagers.

To find out more about what our grantees, children and young people and the sector have told us, please read our reports below:

At BBC Children in Need, we advise our Grant Applicants to conduct thorough research before applying – and these organisations are the best place to start.




Child Poverty

Child Abuse and Protection

Child Protection (Scotland)


Domestic Violence

Drug Abuse



Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual & Transgender (Scotland)

Learning Disability

Life-Limiting and Threatening Conditions

Mental Health

Mobility Disabled

Refugee and Asylum Seeking

Sensory Impairment (hearing impaired) (visually-impaired)

Young Carers

Youth Offending

At BBC Children in Need, we advise our Grant Applicants to conduct thorough research before applying – and these organisations are the best place to start.

Access Northern Ireland

British Association of Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP)

Charity Commission

Charity Commission for Northern Ireland

Children’s Commissioner for England

Children’s Commissioner for Scotland

Children’s Commissioner for Wales

Children’s Commissioner for Northern Ireland

Disclosure and Barring Service

Disclosure Scotland

Information on internet safety

Every Disabled Child Matters (England & Wales)

Mentoring and Befriending Foundation

National Children’s Bureau

National Youth Agency

National Council for Voluntary Organisations (NCVO)

Northern Ireland Council for Voluntary Action


Office of the Scottish Charity Regulator


Participation Works


Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations

Welsh Council for Voluntary Action

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