Recognising the
Work of Smaller

Sir Jules Thorn’s endowment was provided primarily for medical research and medical care. Sir Jules was also a great humanitarian and, in accordance with his wishes, the Trustees allocate resources each year to support smaller charities across the UK.

The Ann Rylands Small Donations programme makes grants to support charities’ core costs with a maximum award of up to £5,000.

The programme was re-launched in January 2022 to enable the Trust to increase support for smaller charities whose work aligns with our mission to improve provision in health and care.

The programme is designed to help smaller charities provide practical and emotional support to people with – or at high risk of – physical or mental ill health, people living with disability, and their families and carers.

We accept applications from charities which offer practical and emotional support to improve health and care for:

  • Older people
  • People with disabilities or living with serious illness
  • People needing palliative and end-of-life care, or
  • People facing challenges with mental health, social exclusion or homelessness

General information and examples of previous awards in these priority areas can be found on the Trust’s website.



Applications are only accepted from charities registered with the Charity Commission for England and Wales or equivalent regulators in other parts of the UK.

Potential applicants should note that it is not possible for the Trust to make donations under this programme to:

  • Individuals or community groups which are not registered charities within the UK
  • Charities that have been registered in the UK for less than 2 years
  • Charities whose annual income – as stated on the Charity Commission website – is under £50,000
  • Charities whose annual income – as stated on the Charity Commission website – exceeds £2 million
  • Charities whose operational area – as stated on the Charity Commission website – is outside the UK
  • Organisations which work principally to support members of a particular faith community, whose charitable objects refer to a particular faith or who mention a specific faith within their website or application
  • Village and community halls, uniformed groups (such as Scouts and Guides), carnivals and arts festivals, ammonising charities (i.e., those that give grants to others) and charities that are engaged in political activism
  • Charities which have free reserves equivalent to 12 months or more of annual expenditure
  • Charities which have received funding from the Trust within the previous 12 months
  • Community interest companies.

We are very conscious of the level of work involved in applying for funding and would encourage charities to consider whether their work aligns with the Trust’s priorities before submitting an application.


All applications must be submitted using the online application form. Applications sent by letter or email will not be considered.

Before applying charities should ensure that they have read and comply with the guidelines for the programme.

As part of the application process applicants will be asked to submit:

  • a copy of the charity’s most recent signed accounts. (The Chair or other appropriate Trustee should sign both the Trustees’ Report and Balance Sheet)
  • a bank statement dated within the last 3 months (which clearly shows the date, account name, sort code and account number).

Charities must take care to attach both their signed accounts and a recent bank statement when submitting their online application form. Unfortunately, we cannot consider applications without this supporting information. Incomplete applications will be automatically rejected, and the charity will not be eligible to submit a fresh application for 12 months. The 12 month period is defined as 12 months from the date of your application decision email. 

If successful, we ask grant recipients to confirm receipt of the donation by email. There are no reporting requirements for awards made under this programme to minimise the workload for recipients. For the same reason, we ask charities not to add the Trust to mailing lists for newsletters or marketing materials.


There are no specific dates for submitting applications. Appeals may be made whenever the online application system is open and will be considered by the Trustees as soon as possible.  We normally aim to assess applications within 6-8 weeks, but this may vary depending on the volume of applications. We will write to all applicants to notify them of the outcome of their appeal, including those who are unsuccessful.

Charities are eligible to submit no more than one application within a 12 month period. The 12 month period is defined as 12 months from the date funds were awarded to your charity for successful applications, and 12 months from the date of your application decision email for unsuccessful applications.

Applicants should contact the Trust, should they have any further questions on [email protected].

More information about previous awards given under this programme can be found in the Previous Awards section of our website.

Apply Here

All applications must be submitted using the online application form