How do I apply for a grant?
There are a number of things you need to know before applying for a grant, including the grant criteria.
Important information before you apply
Before you apply for an assistive technology grant, it’s important you know that:
- We can only consider applications where no statutory funding is available.
- The device can only be used in your home, so your child cannot take it into school – their school should provide any adaptive tech needed in the classroom.
- Your application needs to be supported by a vision impaired (VI) professional or Guide Dogs Habilitation Specialist.
- If successful you should consider adding the device to your household insurance.
- You must also read all the grant criteria before filling in your application form and make sure you have the relevant documentation to hand.
- If your application is successful, we will ask for a (minimum) 10% contribution towards your awarded item, including postage and VAT if applicable.
FAQs for applying
Where do I get an application form?
If you want to apply for a grant, you need to download an application form, and then fill it in.
It’s very important that you tell us how the technology you’re applying for will improve your child’s life. The more detail you can give us, the more information we’ll have when it comes to deciding your application.
Is there an age limit?
The funding is available for children and young people up to (and including) the age of 18.
Who can support my application?
Your application needs to be supported by a VI professional, including:
- Guide Dogs Habilitation Specialist
- Local authority service providers, including QTVI teachers who work directly with your child
- Health workers (VI)
- Social workers
How long will it take to find out if I’m successful?
We’ll send you an email to confirm that we’ve received your application but if you don’t hear anything from us within two weeks, please get in touch.
If your application is completed fully and you have supplied the correct documentation it normally takes three weeks for us to process an application. We’ll send you an email to let you know if you’ve been successful or not. Please be aware our decision is final and we will not enter into any further correspondence.
If your application is rejected because you haven’t given us enough information, we’ll let you know what’s missing and ask you to resubmit your completed application form by a certain date.
Are there other types of technology can you apply for?
Yes. You can apply for a range of technology from high contrast Bluetooth keyboards and switches to refreshable braille devices through our Grant Service. We also offer to fund standard laptop and desktop packages which include magnification and screen reading software.
What if I don’t know which technology to apply for?
You can speak to a member of our technology team, who will help you identify the type of equipment which will be of most benefit. We can in some cases arrange demonstrations through trusted suppliers, so you can be sure before you apply that the technology will meet your child’s needs.
Do you provide funding for equipment in school?
Sorry, no, all items provided by Guide Dogs Grant Service are for home use only.
What information will I need to provide?
The decision to fund is based on the information you provide including how the technology would improve the applicant’s day to day life. Please remember if it is deemed that there is insufficient information the application may be rejected. Applications will need the support of a VI professional who is working directly with the applicant at the time of submission.
Do you means test your applications?
No, the decision to support is based on the benefit to the child or young person.
Will you pay retrospectively?
Sorry, no we can’t and we are unable to pay individuals and we can not exchange the chosen devise for monetary value. The service is also dependent on available funding.
How often can I apply?
One application including unsuccessful can be made in one year. Successful applicants may not apply again within two years.
If you have received an Apple product via the ‘Tech for All’ scheme you are still welcome to apply for other technology through the Guide Dogs Grant. Sorry, we are unable to offer alternative android mobile and/or tablet devices.
Do you have technology events where I can try the technology on offer?
We attend Guide Dogs Family Events throughout the year, where you can meet a member of our team and ask questions. At some events we have the equipment with us, allowing you to try the products yourself.
Will Guide Dogs provide payment towards the upkeep of the device including insurance?
No, you will own the equipment and therefore be responsible for its upkeep including any updates and maintenance. We highly recommend adding your device to your home insurance.
Do I have to provide evidence of my child’s vision impairment?
Yes, your child will need to be certificated or eligible to be certificated as Severely Sight Impaired (blind) or Sight Impaired (partially sighted) to be considered. Applicants will need to supply a copy of a CVI, or a letter from an Ophthalmologist.
If your child has yet to be diagnosed or you do not have documentation of Vision Impairment please contact us to discuss further.
My child has Cortical Visual Impairment (CVI) can I still apply?
Yes, please contact us if you would like to chat through your application.
Can I send an application by post?
We can only accept emailed applications. If you are unable to send your application via email, please contact our Guideline Team on 0800 781 1444.