What we fund

Here you can find out more about what we do and the different areas we fund.  

Please note that The Robertson Trust has published its new Giving Strategy, which sets out our priorities when awarding funds through our open grants programme. The existing application form and guidelines can still be used until July 31st. Find out all you need to know here.

Our main funding activity is through our Grants Programme – supporting charitable activities that fall within our priority funding areas. 

See below to find out more and discover examples of our funding in action.

Our priority funding areas

Alcohol Misuse

This category includes activities which work with children, young people and families to address the harms caused by alcohol misuse, including treatment programmes. The Trust is particularly interested in supporting early intervention projects that take a whole community approach to empower young people, families and communities to make responsible and informed decisions about alcohol.


This category is broadly defined. Examples include projects which enhance the quality of life for individuals and their families with special care or support needs, palliative care, day and residential care for the elderly, people with disabilities and people who are homeless. It also includes projects which provide broad social and emotional support to Carers and includes the provision of respite care.

Community Arts

This category is primarily aimed at providing access and opportunity for young people and for those individuals who may be disadvantaged to engage with all forms of the arts. Projects supported also include those which use the arts for therapeutic purposes or as a vehicle to engage with individuals on particular social issues. Examples include projects which use art based activities as a diversionary tool for young people likely to engage in antisocial behaviour or projects which deliver outreach programmes to encourage participation in drama, art or music based activities within theatres and museums. It also includes work which supports emerging talent among Scotland’s young people.

Community Sports

Applications under this category should demonstrate how the organisation is intentionally using sport as a vehicle to help deliver wider social outcomes for individuals and their community beyond improving performance or increasing participation in sport. Examples include increased educational attainment, reduced risk taking behaviours, improved health, increased community safety and increased employability skills. Applications where the focus is on existing participants or solely on increasing participation or improving access to sport are unlikely to be funded. If applying for capital funds within this category, applicants must clearly demonstrate how the development or enhancement of facilities will better enable them to deliver wider social outcomes in the future and should also be able to demonstrate that they have considered the on-going sustainability of the facility and have a clear operational plan for the facility in place.

Criminal Justice

This category includes activities which work with offenders or people at risk of offending in prison and/or the community. The Trust is particularly interested in supporting projects that work with young offenders, women and families affected by imprisonment to reduce the impact that offending behaviour has on families and communities and to help ensure that wherever possible, people are given the support they need to stay out of the criminal justice system.

Education & Training

This category includes support for community-based activities which increase opportunities in education or which nurture talent and develop positive life skills opportunities. Examples include youth work projects which seek to develop confidence, self-esteem, leadership and employability skills amongst young people, or community based learning centres which target hard to reach groups to provide access to education and training. Universities and FE Colleges should note that the Trust wishes to target revenue funding to projects and activities which provide and increase access for young people and mature students from disadvantaged backgrounds although applications for other areas of work may be considered.


This category includes activities which promote health, as well as those which seek to prevent or treat sickness and disease. Examples include services which support people affected by long term conditions and those which address physical and mental health issues. It also includes projects which work with children identified as being at risk of misusing drugs or with people recovering from drug addictions to assist them to rebuild their lives.

We will also accept applications that fall into the following categories

  • preservation of the environment
  • the strengthening of local communities
  • heritage, culture & science
  • animal welfare
  • the saving of lives

In all of the above cases, support is given to charities working at both local and national level and all are eligible to apply for revenue or capital funding.

As well as our Grants Programme we also run two other programmes - our Development Programme and our Scholarship Programme.