The Applicant Officer (AO) is the professional who applies on behalf of the family. AOs must be health or social care professionals, employed by a statutory organisation (NHS or local authority).
The AO should be working with the family on a professional basis and who knows the family and their history, and is happy to complete an application on the family's behalf.
We are unable to accept applications completed by parents or individuals. The reason we only accept applications via this route is to ensure that criteria is met through an independent professional. It greatly reduces our overheads by asking the AO to check details for us, thus ensuring a fast decision process. If we had to do these checks internally, we would not have as many funds available to help families.
You can become an AO by registering your details with us. We will then send you an application form that you can use to apply for a grant. To do this email email@example.com
Is the family eligible?
Marvellous Family Grants are open to any family in the UK who meet the following criteria:
- There is a child who has a serious illness that could be life-limiting, as described by the following:
- Group 1 - Life threatening conditions for which curative treatment may be feasible but can fail. (e.g. epilepsy, irreversible organ failures of heart, liver, kidneys.)
- Group 2 - Conditions where premature death is inevitable. (e.g. cystic fibrosis.)
- Group 3 - Progressive conditions without curative treatment options. (e.g. Batten disease, mucopolysaccaridoses, muscular dystrophy.)
- Group 4 - Irreversible but non-progressive conditions causing severe disability leading to susceptibility to health complications and likelihood of premature death. (e.g. sickle cell disease, cerebral palsy, multiple disabilities such as brain or spinal cord insult.)
- Group 5 - Syndromes without a name (SWAN) causing severe, chronic disability or illness.
Please note that the charity's remit excludes all forms of cancer owing to levels of support for children and young people with cancer being far higher than those for other conditions. We are also unable to support applicants whose primary diagnosis is a developmental disability including Autism and ADHD.
Who is eligiable to apply for a grant?
- The child is eligible to receive Medium or High Rate DLA (the Care component) or the Enhanced Rate for 6 of the 12 activities in the PIP, or has an equivalent level of need
- The person has yet to reach their 25th birthday
- The family are living in financial hardship
- The family has not received a grant for this child from the Marvellous Family Grants Programme in the last 12 months
- The grant is for the benefit of the child directly
What we will consider supporting
Grant awards of up to a maximum of £1,000 are considered to enable families to access a variety of support including;
- Physiotherapy, speech and language therapy, hydrotherapy and counselling, where the provision on the NHS is not sufficient
- Play, art or music therapy sessions
- Specialist equipment, for example, specialist seats and walkers, epilepsy monitors etc
- Everyday items that will improve the child's quality of life and keep them out of hospital longer, for example furniture, white goods and clothing (where this is required because of the child's condition)
- Attendance at a medical/support group conference
- Ongoing social activities, lessons and memberships
- iPads/laptops where there is evidence that it will be educational benefit to the child
- Travel (including parking), whilst a child is in hospital
Please note that we are NOT able to consider applications for:
- Funding holidays
- Funding day trips
- Property adaptations
- Any kind of decorating
- Deposits for vehicles
- Garden works
- Sheds or storage
- Utility bills
- Respite care
- Driving lessons
- We are also unable to help with requests where a statutory agency (such as local authorities or health service) has a responsibility to provide the item required
- Anything that doesn't have a direct impact on the child
What will you need to complete an application?
- Name for each family member and dates of birth for all children
- Family's contact details (address, phone number and e-mail address.)
- The child's (or children's) medical condition.
- Details of the support required by the family, how it will benefit the child with the serious illness, and the total cost of this support, including a financial breakdown of the costs
- Evidence of the child's (or children's) disability benefits and the family's financial situation
- Whether any other charities have been approached for funding and the outcome of this
- Your organisation's bank account details for payment of the grant. Please note that we cannot pay a grant award into an individual's bank account. If you do not have a bank account for us to pay into, we will need a quote or internet links included in the application for the items/services you are requesting us to consider. Please note: If you are requesting funding for hospital travel costs/accommodation, we can only pay any awarded grant into the Applicant Officer's organisation's bank account.
- The child's ethnic origin - this is purely for monitoring purposes and will not be used to determine whether a grant should be awarded. This is in an appendix that will be removed before the application is considered
- The parent's signature to comply with Data Protection purposes. Any applications received without a signature of a parent will be rejected
How long does it take?
Applications are considered at a monthly grants allocations meeting. The application forms need to be submitted by a set date to be considered at each month's meetings. These dates can be found on the right hand side of the page. We will notify with the outcome of your application by the notification date following the date, which you submitted the form. Depending on when in the month your form is submitted, your application could take between 4-9 weeks.
If you are working with a family who you feel would meet the criteria, please register with us for an application form. Alternatively, please email firstname.lastname@example.org confirming your full name, organisation name and contact details.
We aim to send out application packs to applicant officers within 10 working days of receiving your request.
Please note our fund is limited and we will be unable to fund every grant requested. On some occasions successful grant applications may only be partially funded as we try and help as many families as possible. Grants are generally awarded to eligible cases that demonstrate the greatest need, and where we feel our funding can make the biggest difference.
 Adapted from: ACT, ‘A Guide to the Development of Children’s Palliative Care Services,’ 2009.