Gino Watkins Memorial Fund & Edward Wilson Fund Grants

The Gino Watkins Memorial Fund

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Grant amount: Up to £2,000

Deadline: Jan 31, 2021

Applicant type: Individuals Nonprofit

Funding uses: Conference, Education / Outreach, Research, Project / Program

Location of project: Antarctica, Canada, Faroe Islands, Finland, Greenland Show all

Location of residency: Anywhere in the world

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The Gino Watkins Memorial Fund is a Trust raised as a memorial to H. Gino Watkins, a young explorer who lost his life in Greenland in 1932.  The joint Trustees (the Royal Geographical Society and the University of Cambridge), appoint a committee whose aims, on behalf of the Trust, are to implement the Fund’s objects which are:

  • The improvement and diffusion of knowledge of the Polar Regions
  • The promotion of the acquisition of the special knowledge necessary for the success of Polar Exploration and for the prevention of accidents and loss of life on Polar expeditions and
  • With the view to the objects aforesaid the assistance by financial or other means of suitable Polar expeditions.

To do so, the Fund provides approval and grants in aid to well-conceived polar expeditions. Each year the Fund helps appropriate expeditions to visit not only Greenland and other high Arctic lands, but also the Antarctic

The Edward Wilson Fund, named after Dr Edward Wilson who died with Captain Robert Scott on returning from the South Pole in 1912, is administered by the Scott Polar Research Institute (SPRI) and financed by royalties from some of the Institute’s publications and other donations.  Grants from the fund, which are nominated by the Gino Watkins Memorial Fund Committee to SPRI, are particularly applicable to expeditions in which biological and ecological studies are prominent.

The Arctic Club Award is given to an expedition selected from those who apply to the Gino Watkins Memorial Fund. It is given, usually annually, to a sporting rather than a scientific expedition.

There is one common application process; a grant may be awarded from whichever fund is more applicable.

You can learn more about this opportunity by visiting the funder's website.


  • The Trustees welcome applications for support from people of all backgrounds, including but not limited to school groups, scouting and guiding groups, and other youth organisations.


  • Expeditions that bring experience and training to young people are likely to be favoured. 
  • In making awards the Committee will additionally take account of the financial constraints on the party and the degree of self-help.


  • Grants are rarely given for non-polar or populous districts.
  • Ventures to Iceland in the summer and to Norway are not usually awarded grants.