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The National Lottery and the non-profit sector

3.4 Link funding guidelines to a medium-term developmental agenda
At present, there does not appear to be any clear developmental agenda informing the allocation of funding in any of the three core sectors: charities, sports, and arts. Instead, funding priorities change, making it difficult for organisations to anticipate a reliable source of medium-term funding. Funding is largely short-term (1 year) and project-specific. The DTI claims that a core objective of the Lottery is to ensure that non-profit organisations are able to obtain a degree of long-term funding security, tied to the seven year cycle of each Lottery contract.80 Yet the entire nature of the funding process seems to preclude this, in that applications have to be made annually. Moreover, in-so-far as each Distribution Agency is free to alter its criteria for priority funding annually, organisations can (and, in the case of Charities, have already) find themselves in a situation where they have to

Surely some combination of longer-term funding, linked to both project and organisational funding, and shorter-term, project-based funding, would offer greater security and enhanced opportunities for the non-profit sector?

  1. Interview with Edwin Smith, spokesperson for Alec Erwin, 28/06/2002.
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