RESponsible Island prize

Small Grants Scheme

OREF is aware of the present financial and practical difficulties facing researchers, developers and innovators today. In keeping with the aims of the prize, OREF feels assistance in the form of a small, flexible grant scheme, easy to access, with minimal procedural requirements, would assist in furthering the development of Renewable Technology, Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency in Orkney.
An explanation of the eligibility criteria, types of projects supported, the funding proposed, terms and conditions, obligations and restrictions, and application process is explained here.

Orkney Renewable Energy Forum (OREF) wishes to further the development of Renewable Technology, Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency in Orkney. To support this OREF welcomes applications to apply to their small grants scheme.

Who can apply

The scheme is intended to support Orkney and the community. Therefore, applications are welcomed from Orkney residents and qualifying organisations based in Orkney who wish to:

  • Develop a project and/or
  • Get support for a feasibility study and/or
  • Undertake small scale research

Who cannot apply

The OREF fund will not generally support applications that are related to:

  • Work that is primarily the responsibility of public agencies
  • Event sponsorship
  • Advertising, promotion or marketing of events or services
  • Fundraising events
  • Political activities
  • Applications from Non-Orkney residents/organisations

Application conditions

  • The application should support OREF’S aims and objectives and demonstrate the benefits it will bring to Orkney.
  • OREF would like original work and funding will not be given for a project or work already done.
  • Up to 85% of the costs will be supported. If an ‘in kind’ contribution is offered 75% of the costs will be supported.
    Maximum assistance will be £1000.
  • OREF may agree to an application in principle, but it may be subject to the provision of further information. Such requests will be time bound. If an applicant does not meet the time period specified this will be treated as a withdrawal of the application.
  • An applicant may make only one request in a 12-month period.
  • OREF’s assistance should be recognised on any publicity produced by the applicant.
  • OREF’s logo/branding/shout out to go on any output.
  • The applicant/s will produce a report for OREF on the completion of the project, or earlier if requested by OREF.
  • If the proposed project does not proceed OREF expects the applicant to repay the grant.
  • The applicant accepts that by part funding a project, OREF and its directors accept no liability for the project in any way.
  • The applicant agrees to unconditionally indemnify OREF and its directors against any such claim.
  • If funds become fully allocated the scheme will close. This may be at short notice. It will be reported on OREF’s website.
  • If formally requested by OREF, all references to OREF will be removed from a project. This will not require repayment of the grant.
  • OREF’s decision on funding is final. No negotiations or correspondence with applicants will be entered into over this.

Application process

Applicants can apply by downloading and completing the OREF Small Grants Application Form.  This documents requires an applicant’s identification and contact information, an outline of the project, its aims, methodology, costs, duration, and any funding already obtained or expected.  The completed application form can be submitted to office@oref.co.uk at any time.

An initial check will be done on eligibility then a funding subcommittee will evaluate the application. Further information or clarification may be requested from the applicant at this stage.

OREF aims for the evaluation process to take no longer than 8 weeks. If successful, the applicant/s will be notified of the award and any conditions attached to it. The project’s expenses or costs claimed must be accompanied by documentary evidence of the expense.  This will be checked against the grant conditions to verify it is an allowable cost.

OREF only has a small fund but would like to support as many projects as possible. Though not a grant criterion, if the project is successful, OREF would be very pleased if the applicant would consider recycling the grant by contributing whatever they can to OREF’s Small Grant Scheme. This will help OREF to further assist future applicants.

RESponsible Island Prize.

In 2019 the European Commission launched the RESponsible Island Prize. The prize name referred to the combination of renewables (RES) and responsibility. It aimed to reward achievements in local renewable energy production for islands. It was awarded based on the share of renewable energy produced by innovative energy technologies, environmental and socioeconomic sustainability and impact, and citizen and community involvement as well as replicability of the solution.
The Orkney Islands won 3rd place and was awarded €100,000. The judges felt there was evidence that Orkney had shown it had overcome a series of energy challenges and were now among European leaders in using novel green technologies for decarbonization.