Traditionally the trustees of the Society held two "Case Meetings" each year to consider new applications for assistance, and two "business" meetings to discuss matters concerning the management of the charity, its finances etc. This meant that some applicants might have had to wait up to 6 or 7 months to learn if their application was successful or not. However, the General Committee now meets on a quarterly basis and trustees undertake a range of business including consideration of applications.
For consideration at the March meeting of the General Committee, applications must be received by 31st December. Likewise, for the meetings in June by 31st March: for September by 30th June and for December by 30th September .
All applications are presented to trustees on a "name-blind basis", so that no prejudice can arise from assumptions about an applicant's race,background or religion based on their name. A summary of each application is provided to trustees, along with a Financial Statement, but the Caseworker for each applicant will have full details available to answer any questions which may arise in discussion.
Each application is considered on its own merits, and trustees decide whether to admit, defer for further information or reject each in turn. Trustees will take into account evidence of personal achievement in their life; self support; consideration of others; voluntary or community work, or looking after family members who required care. This information is requested on the application form and developed further during the first Caseworker visit. Trustees will also consider the level of debt an applicant may have.
All applicants are written to within a few days of each meeting, advising them of the outcome of their application.
The Society only has a finite income, and actively manages the number of beneficiaries it commits to support on a long term basis. Occasionally there may be more applicants who meet the admission process than the Society is willing to admit at that time, and in such circumstances, priority is given to those on the lowest "income" as defined above. Applicants who cannot be admitted immediately are carried forward on a waiting list.