Scottish grant holder support toolkit

Resources to help you run your funding grant

The basics

Communication and marketing

Free or discounted communication and marketing software

Canva Pro

An easy to use online graphic design platform. You can use it to create social media graphics, presentations, posters, documents and other visual content. The 'Pro' premium version is offered free to charities and CICs.

Photoshop Elements 2022 and Premiere Elements 2022 Bundle

Good video and image editing software. Available at a heavily discounted one-off fee to UK charities through Charity Digital Exchange.

Adobe Creative Cloud

The full set of industry leading design, video and graphics products. Subscription based. Includes PhotoShop as well as video/audio editing and document design packages. Offered to UK charities and housing associations at a significant discount through the Charity Digital Exchange

Community development and ownership

Diagnostic support

Environment and sustainability



SCVO's governance guide includes resources for:

  • good governance
  • managing staff
  • volunteers governance
  • FirstPort - training events
  • free workshops focusing on the knowledge and skills to start and run a social enterprise, including:
  • governance and board training for organisational start-up
  • legal structures training for organisational start-up.

Just Enterprise

Just Enterprise provides support for social enterprises including:

  • legal and strategy planning support
  • governance for Social Enterprises
  • training for organisational start-up

Chairs Network Scotland

Self-assessment toolkit for charity non-executives to rate their skills and experience across a range of categories.

TSI Network

Local TSIs usually offer governance and legal structures training.

Organisation growth and change

Wren and Greyhound - Strategy and planning support consultancy

Consultants specialising in third sector support, including strategy and planning. Includes offer of business planning retreats.

The Lens

An organisation that helps facilitate change within organisations. Range of offers and resources including:

Social Investment Scotland workshops and webinars

Range of sessions focused on looking into the future of your organisation's finances, including:

Just Enterprise – Planning for Growth

Provides support and resources around managing the growth of an organisation, focusing on social enterprise.

Impact and evaluation resources

Evaluation Support Scotland (ESS)

ESS gives practical support and access to impact and evaluation resources and tools.

SCVO monitoring and evaluation guidance

A short guide to monitoring and evaluation.

Wren and Greyhound

Support with planning outcomes, developing evaluation frameworks or devising action research projects.

Social Investment Scotland - impact learning hub

Links to various resources around impact practice, frameworks and toolkits.

Community Enterprise

Free or affordable consultancy to help involve service users, community and partners to assess an organisations impact.

Cranfield Trust

A free consultancy for charities around performance and impact.

Charity Fundraising Ltd

Consultancy providing support with evaluation,
impact monitoring and training.

New Philanthropy Capital (NPC) - Impact measurement, evaluation and data guides

Search the NPC resource hub for articles and information.

Inspiring Impact

Free impact and measurement resources. Information on understanding impact, training and consultancy, including NPC's Understanding Impact guide.

Eastside Primetimers consultancy

Consultancy support to measure impact.

Charity Excellence Framework

Access to a free online impact measurement framework and tools.

Centre for Youth Impact

Resources to support organisations to evaluate their work with young people.

Cultural Learning Evidence Champions

A handbook for gathering evidence and evaluation. Designed for evaluators in the arts but relevant for all sectors.

Directory of Social Change research consultancy

Research support to help with looking at impact and programme assessments for charities, funders and other not-for-profit organisations.

Institute for Voluntary Action Research (IVAR)

Uses action research to help support and respond to social challenges with the aim of strengthening the voluntary sector.

National Lottery Trust Fund

Our outcome frameworks and standalone measures guide. Our own guide with tools to help gather evidence and learning.

IT and digital resources

SCVO Digital

SCVO Digital provides events and training and information about:

  • Digital Services
  • Digital Inclusion
  • Remote Working
  • Digishift
  • Digital Skills
  • Connecting Scotland
  • Cyber resilience
  • Digital

Digital for Good

Is a network of digital professionals supporting third sector organisations.

Charity Digital

Provides blogs, guides and free events on a range of digital issues including free webinars and events and a database including discounted software for charities.

Charity Catalogue

A catalogue of useful online and digital tools for charities.

Third Sector Lab

Provides training and consultancy to help get the most from digital. They run The Curve, a series of free, 90-minute online workshops. These are about best digital practices, raising awareness of digital tools and helping increase impact.

Scottish Tech Army

A specialist tech volunteer support initiative.

National Cyber Security Centre - Small Charity Guide

UK Government agency's guide for charities on how to improve cyber security within your charity - quickly, easily and at low cost.

The Catalyst Digital Safeguarding Guide

A step-by-step digital safeguarding guide. For charities designing new services or moving existing ones online.

Digital for Good

A network of digital professionals supporting third sector organisations.

Charity Digital

Blogs, guides and free events on a range of digital issues for charities, free webinars and events, and a database of discounted software for charities.

Charity Catalogue

Catalogue of useful online digital tools for charities.


Top resources


ACOSVO is a membership organisation for voluntary sector leaders and senior staff in Scotland, supporting, developing and inspiring leaders.

SCVO training courses

SCVO provide online training opportunities for third sector organisations covering a range of topics.

Third Sector Interfaces (TSI) Network

TSIs provide online training opportunities for third sector organisations covering a range of topics. Local TSIs can provide a range of training and support, some are free.

Programmes and qualifications

SCVO management and leadership accreditation

In partnership, SCVO and Challenges Catalyst offer a Chartered Management Institute (CMI) Level 5 (Equivalent to SCQF Level 8) certificate in Management and Leadership qualification to SCVO member organisations and the voluntary sector.

Entrepreneurial Scotland leadership programmes

Leadership programmes designed for third sector management who want to learn more about leading growth and change. The programmes blend diagnostics, teaching and peer to peer learning.

Cause 4 – Trustee Leadership Programme

Delivered by social enterprise Cause4 in partnership with Close Brothers Asset Management and the Clothworkers’ Company, this Trustee course gives professionals the skills and confidence to join a charity as a board member.

Scottish Enterprise Rural Leadership Programme

The Scottish Enterprise Rural Leadership Programme (supported by HIE) is designed to give rural business owners and managers confidence and skills to make bold decisions and to get the best from themselves, their business, and their team.

John Smith Centre Minority Ethnic Emerging Leaders Programme

The John Smith Centre Minority Ethnic Emerging Leaders Programme is a professional and personal development opportunity for people between the ages of 18 – 29 from minority ethnic backgrounds across Scotland.

Leadership training sessions and short courses

Social Enterprise Academy

Provide training courses around third sector and social enterprise leadership, covering community based organisations and larger strategic organisations.

Directory of Social Change - leadership resources and training

Online training courses for Third Sector managers and leaders.

Clore Social Leadership courses

Courses and resources designed to help those from the social sector develop their leadership to lead more effectively.

Centre for Voluntary Sector Leadership

The Centre (Supported by the Open University Business School) provides voluntary sector organisations with access to leadership development resources and research-led insight. Including:

Civicos Training and Communications

Civicos is a not-for-profit company providing vocational training to voluntary organisations, with a number of training opportunities for Third Sector managers and leaders.

Charity Finance Group events

A range of events and training courses delivered through expert speakers from both the corporate and voluntary sector.


Pilotlight transforms the lives of disadvantaged people in the UK by offering charities and social enterprises access to strategic business support.

Institute of Directors CPD courses and resources

CPD opportunities for Directors including Certificates and Diplomas in Company Direction and Chartered Directors programmes.

LawWorks – Free legal advice

LawWorks brokers free legal advice to small not-for profit organisations on a wide range of legal issues.

Resources and reference

Third Sector Governance Forum leadership link library

Links to external resources supporting all elements of Leadership support.

Inspiring Scotland Knowledge Hub

Inspiring Scotland’s Knowledge Hub leadership section full of handy resources.

Trustees’ Week resources

A collection of resources and training opportunities for Third Sector Trustees.

Management Centre

A menu of leadership skills and development training programmes for management and leaders.

People management

Human resources

SCVO HR and Employment Support Service

Free online guidance and toolkits, training and webinars on topics including:

  • remote working
  • redundancy
  • restructuring
  • supporting employee mental health and wellbeing.

And a 1-2-1 enquiry service to help organisations facing challenging HR issues to understand their options and make informed choices about the best action to take. Free to SCVO members groups with an income of under £50,000.

Third Sector Interfaces

Some Third Sector Interfaces offer HR support or in-house HR services for charities in their area. GCVS in Glasgow runs a HR support service and has free toolkits and resources

Inspiring Scotland

Support & advice consultancy service for Scottish charities that are not currently Inspiring Scotland grant holders.

Free HR Dept advice for ACOSVO members

Members of the Association of Chief Officers of Scottish Voluntary Organisations (ACOSVO) can access free HR support from HR Dept, one of the UK’s leading HR providers.

Cranfield Trust HR links

A curated list of useful HR resources and support.

Strategy and planning

Resources & guides


Provide training opportunities for third sector organisations covering a range of topics, delivered virtually by SCVO. They also provide business planning guides and resources.

Charity Finance Group

Membership organisation offering training to the charity sector to develop:

  • leadership and financial management skill
  • understanding of topical financial issues
  • networking and knowledge sharing.

Inspiring Scotland - Support & Advice

Provide a support and advice consultancy service led by in house staff, matching organisations to their network of professional volunteers for free. Open to all of the Third sector and do not have to be an Inspiring Scotland grantholder to receive support.

They also have a Knowledge Hub that gives tips on strategy planning.

NCVO Know How

Offers advice and support for voluntary organisations and whilst based in England there is a range of tools and advice for free online.

Social Enterprise Academy

Can provide training and learning programmes for social enterprises.

Charity Excellence Framework

Free Resource Hub for charities including tools and advice.

Charity Comms - communications strategy resources

Up-to-date tips and advice from sector experts.

Free support & mentoring

CFG Small Charities Programme

CFG Small Charities Programme provides practical finance training both face-to-face and online and resources for charities with an income of £1m or less including budget and cashflow templates

Cranfield Trust

Free management support to charities, including:

  • free webinars,
  • management support
  • consultancy.

Bank of Scotland Foundation’s grantholders – Mentoring programme

A mentoring programme in which their grantholders are matched with a Scotland based colleague mentor from the Lloyds Banking Group to receive individual tailored business support.


Provides free training and workshops for social enterprises. Can also provide tailored business advice as part of the Just Enterprise programme.

Small Charities Coalition - mentoring

Provides mentoring support for small charities

Consultancy services


Can provide consultancy support to help organisations improve their strategic and business planning.

CEIS enterprise support

Can provide a range of consultancy support and training to help improve planning and strategy including online training and workshops.

Community Enterprise

Provides consultancy development support to social enterprises, charities and voluntary groups.


Can provide consultancy support to help with planning and strategy.

GLT partners

Provide consultancy support in a range of areas including strategic and business planning.


Can provide consultancy support to develop a strategic plan.

Rocket Science

Can provide consultancy support to help organisations improve their strategic and business planning.

SKS Scotland

Can provide consultancy support to help organisations improve their strategic and business planning.

STAR Development Group

Specialist in community owned organisations/development trusts can provide toolkits and training courses.

Wren & Greyhound

Can provide consultancy support to help organisations improve their strategic and business planning.