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Scottish Connections Fund

As part of its new Scottish Connections Framework, the Scottish Government has launched the Scottish Connections Fund that will provide funding to organizations for new projects to promote Scotland’s reputation and interests. Grants for between £2,000 and £5,000 may be requested for projects completed by the end of March 2024. The closing date for applications is 5:00 PM GMT on November 8, 2023.

The Scottish Connections Framework established a comprehensive approach to what the Scottish government calls “diaspora engagement.” According to the report issued on April 11, 2023 by Angus Robertson MSP, Cabinet Secretary for Constitution, External Affairs and Culture, it “outlines a series of commitments and ambitions to strengthen and expand our relationships with, and between, Scotland’s international communities, and expand on existing work with our established networks.”

The sections include:

  • Picturing and Understanding Scotland's Diaspora;

  • Engaging Scotland's Diaspora;

  • Scotland's Culture;

  • Living and Working in Scotland;

  • Education and Alumni;

  • Visiting Scotland – Haste Ye Back;

  • Doing Business with the World;

  • Scotland's Offer to our Diaspora; and

  • Commitments in this Framework.

Of particular interest to Scottish heritage societies, the new Scottish Connections office within the Scottish Government launched the Scottish Connections Fund on October 9, 2023. Grants of between £2,000 and £5,000 will be available to Caledonian, St Andrew’s or other Scotland-linked community or heritage organizations; cultural, musical, theatrical, sporting, linguistic, religious or related bodies with Scottish links; and organizers of major Scottish themed events, such as Tartan Festivals, Highland Games, music/cultural/dance festivals.

Applicants must demonstrate that the project has a clear link to Scottish Connections Framework; will increase vibrancy, visibility or connectivity between Scottish diaspora communities outside Scotland; has a credible communications plan that promotes Scotland’s reputation as a place to live, work, visit, study, and do business; promotes inclusion and diversity; and will be completed by March 31, 2024.

The funding can be used for things directly related to the project, such as venue rental, IT hardware and software, learning materials, equipment and implementation costs, and travel and accommodation costs where justifiable.

Eligible organizations must complete the application form and budget template online and e-mail the package to by 5:00 PM GMT on November 8, 2023.

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