Participatory Grantmaking: Sharing the Power of Giving in Stratford-upon-Avon

Imagine you have a pot of money to improve our town, Stratford-upon-Avon. Traditionally, a few people would decide how to share it amongst different projects.

Participatory grantmaking flips this idea on its head! It involves YOU, the community, in deciding how these resources are distributed. Think of it as a team effort:

  • Community members like you help shape the application process by suggesting what information best captures our local needs.
  • Local experts from the community can also join review panels to assess proposals alongside other reviewers, bringing their lived experiences to the table.


There are different ways to do this, depending on the size and scale of the project:

  • Small-scale: Community members might help design application forms or participate in review panels for local grants.
  • Medium-scale: We could establish a committee with a mix of community members, experts, and individuals who have directly experienced the issues being addressed by the grants. This committee would then decide how to allocate the funds.
  • Large-scale: In some cases, everyone in the community might have a say in how the money is distributed, either through voting online or in person.


The goal of participatory grantmaking is to:

  • Empower the community to have a say in how resources are used.
  • Ensure funding goes towards projects that truly address the needs and priorities identified by the community itself.
  • Create a sense of ownership and shared responsibility for the positive impact of the funded projects.

This is all about sharing the power of giving and working together to make Stratford upon Avon an even better place to live!

At Stratford Town Trust, we are busy exploring how we can continue our move to become a participatory grantmaker and help create a vibrant and connected community.