Hope Community Arts Fund

This funding programme is closed to new applications.

View open art and culture funding programmes

Over the past 5 years the Kent and Medway Suicide Prevention Programme has supported over 15 different arts projects and we have seen first hand the impact the arts can have, how they can boost confidence and offer a form of expression which feels safe to participants. That is why we are launching the 'Hope' Community Arts Fund in partnership with the Creative and Cultural Economy Service.

In July 2023 we will be holding an event to showcase art projects which give hope to those at risk of suicide and self-harm living in Kent and Medway. This showcase will coincide with this year’s Baton of Hope journey which is designed to be the biggest suicide awareness and prevention initiative the UK has seen, opening up necessary conversations and prompting appropriate actions – bringing hope to those who need it.

The Kent and Medway Suicide Prevention Strategy’s ambition is to reduce the number of people dying by suicide in Kent and Medway. We understand that many people are facing extremely difficult circumstances (whether that’s in relation to their health, their relationships or their finances), but we also agree with the organisers of the Baton of Hope when they say “There is hope. If more people talk openly about mental health and suicide, spot the signs, ask the right questions, and listen without judgement, we can make a difference.”

We are looking for creative projects which promote the concept of hope in relation to suicide prevention and mental health.

Grants available

We are offering 2 grants of £5,000 and up to 10 smaller grants of £1,000 to help you bring your vision of hope to life. Match funding is not required for this grant.

Successful applicants will be expected to produce a short evaluation, we will provide a template for this.

Applications closed on 5 April 2023.


  • Your organisation must be located in Kent and Medway or intend to deliver the funded activity within Kent and Medway.
  • The applicant must be a non-profit distributing organisation (NPDO). Proposals from individual artists and freelance practitioners are accepted provided there is clear public benefit.

A non-profit distributing organisation (NPDO) is a form of business structure where, although profit is still sought, any profit is reinvested in services or business growth rather than being distributed to shareholders.

  • Your project should be completed by 27 June 2023.
  • Applicants must be willing and able to share their project for display between 4 and 15 July at a venue (to be confirmed) in Kent and Medway.
  • Applicants must be willing and able to allow their project to be shared for up to a further 6 weeks at dates (to be confirmed) before 31 March 2024.


DateWhat happens
13 MarchLaunch fund
5 AprilApplications close
14 AprilDecision to applicants
27 JuneProjects complete
4 to 15 JulyBaton of Hope event (details to be confirmed – likely to include all funded projects being displayed at a high-profile venue or venues across Kent and Medway)


Applications closed on 5 April 2023.

  • We can only accept applications online.
  • If you need technical support to complete your application email suicideprevention@kent.gov.uk.
  • We will check your application to ensure it is complete and eligible.
  • If eligible it will be assessed using the assessment criteria.
  • We aim to let you know the outcome of your application by 14 April 2023.

In your application

  • Tell us about your project (in a maximum of 250 words) 
    • Please describe your project concisely
    • What are you hoping it will achieve?
    • How does your project involve people with living experience of suicide or self-harm?
    • What is the public benefit either now or in the longer term?
  • How will your project promote the concept of ‘Hope’? (In a maximum of 500 words)
  • Tell us about your creative practice (in a maximum of 250 words) 
    • How will creatives lead your project or idea?
    • Tell us about your creative process.
    • How will the idea or project enable you to develop your own practice or that of your organisation?
  • How will people engage with your project? (In a maximum of 250 words)
    • If your project engages people or has an audience how will you make sure that you are inclusive and safe?

Assessment criteria

  • Ideas and project which promote the concept of 'Hope'.
  • Ideas and projects that are led by a creative practitioner, artist, creative-led organisation or business and show a creative process.
  • Ideas and projects that help us to meet the Kent and Medway Suicide Prevention Programme ambition to champion diversity in how we work.
  • How your work delivers public benefit now or in the longer term.
  • How people with lived experience will be involved in the creative process.

What the fund cannot support

  • Activity organised for party political, religious or charity fundraising purposes.
  • Higher education courses or the costs of attending training courses.
  • Projects where the activity takes place in schools and is not open to the public.
  • Capital schemes, though we may fund equipment purchase as part of a wider project.
  • Activity which has already taken place.
  • We will not accept anything which conflicts with our policies.