Grassroots in surgery
Our Grassroots in Surgery Scheme is a new project to support surgeons, surgeons in training and other professionals who are actively trying to address Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) in surgery.
Grassroots organisations and collective efforts working in this area are eligible to apply for grants of between £3,000 and £10,000 to support projects or activities to help make surgery a more inclusive profession.
Successful applicants can also access further support from the College during a 12-month partnership. The exact package of support will be tailored to the individual groups selected, but will be aimed at helping them engage with the College in the future and to become more sustainable in the longer term.
The scheme was launched in 2022 and funded seven organisations.
Applications for the 2023 scheme will open at 9am on Tuesday 25 April 2023 and will close at 12.30pm on Friday 23 June 2023. Download application form.
Who can apply
The Grassroots in Surgery Scheme is open to grassroots organisations or collective efforts addressing DEI in surgery.
This includes, but is not limited to, groups of surgeons, surgeons in training or medical students who are addressing a specific issue or offering support to an underrepresented community within surgery. These groups may be:
- An autonomous group
- A not-for-profit organisation or charity
- An informal network or a group operating under the banner of a larger organisation. For example, a network associated with a surgical specialist association or a student surgical society based at a UK university.
In the first year of the project, we received applications from projects or activities related to issues including, but not limited to:
- Socio-economic background
- Race and ethnicity
- The LGBTQ+ community and others.
If you have any questions about your eligibility for the scheme, please contact the team on firstname.lastname@example.org.
To be eligible for this programme, applicant groups must demonstrate the following:
- An understanding of issues around DEI in surgery
- Be applying for support to help them focus on tackling issues around DEI in surgery
- Be based in the United Kingdom
- Be able to demonstrate how a grant would significantly enhance their ability to deliver a project
- Be able to demonstrate how a project is deliverable, in full or in significant part, within a 12-month timeframe.
Grassroots organisations or collective efforts with an annual operating budget of less than £200,000 will be prioritised. Applicants with an operating budget of higher than £200,000 will still be considered and it is recognised that some collective efforts will be operating under the banner of much larger organisations.
The following groups, projects and activities will not be funded:
- Projects that do not focus, at least in significant part, on the surgical profession
- Academic research projects. All enquiries over research funding should be directed to the College’s Research department
- Organisations or projects that are based outside the UK
- Projects of which the primary aim is to generate a financial surplus
- Businesses or business associations
- Re-granting organisations
- Colleges or universities, though a student group which uses a UK college or university bank account may be eligible
- Student or trainee surgical societies who are seeking support for their running costs, or sponsorship for events or conferences, where the main purpose of the society, event or conference is not addressing DEI in surgery. These queries should be directed to the College’s Outreach team.
In March 2021 we published the findings of the Kennedy Review, which looked into the diversity of the leadership of the surgical profession and of the College. In September 2021 we published our Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Action Plan which addresses the 16 recommendations made in the review.
The Review recommended that the College provide seed funding and/or support to grassroots organisations or collective efforts that seek to address diversity, equity and inclusion issues in surgery. The recommendation said that we should:
‘Create or reallocate a budget of £50,000 per annum to be awarded as seed funding and/or support to grassroots organisations or collective efforts that seek to address diversity, equity and inclusion issues in surgery.’
Our vision is to ensure that all of the roles supporting the College’s work are diverse and reflective of the breadth of talent within surgery. We will do this by partnering with, and providing funding for, grassroots organisations and collective efforts that address diversity, equity and inclusion issues in surgery. By actively seeking and listening to the issues and challenges faced by different groups, we hope to cater better for them in the future.
Our desired outcomes are that, by the end of the project:
- The College is seen as generous, collaborative and supportive towards those organisations who share the College’s vision and create / foster belonging for specific groups of surgeons;
- The College shows itself able to work in ‘co-opetition’;
- The College is seen as more representative of surgeons at all career stages;
- The College’s strategy and activities are better informed by diverse networks and opinions.