Mini Explorers Fund

Mini Explorers

The Mini Explorer Fund gives children and families in Scotland the opportunity to have a break away, discover Scotland and make fantastic family memories.  We know that residential trips have a huge range of positive impacts on children and families, with families able to spend quality time together, try new things, learn together, and develop stronger relationships. Through the Mini Explorer Fund, we want to support nursery groups and family charities to ensure all families can access these amazing experiences.

The Mini Explorer Fund was launched in 2018 and has been a great success.  Woodburn Nursery from Falkirk went on the first-ever Mini Explorers trip to Rowardennan Youth Hostel. They paddled in Loch Lomond, toasted marshmallows on a bonfire and even had a boat trip. You can read about it here

Catrine Early Childhood Centre went on a trip last year to Pitlochry with their families, they had selfie scavenger hunts, den building, bookbug sessions, bedtime stories, and even wrote and posted postcards back to their centre. They wrote a blog of their trip here

We have now opened our first round of funding for 2020

Nursery groups, early years centres and charities working with families with early years children (aged up to 5) can apply to receive a funded residential trip to a Hostelling Scotland Youth Hostel of their choice.

For more information and advice on how to apply, download the application form and guidance notes below.  For useful information about what to expect on a trip to our Youth Hostels please read the information sheet.

We are proud to support the Brilliant Residentials campaign, to make high-quality residentials a reality for all children and young people. We ask groups applying to the Mini Explorer Fund to consider the criteria for a brilliant residential when they are designing their trip, including co-designing their trip with children and families. For more information on what makes a brilliant residential please go to the Learning Away website

The deadline for applications is February 28th 2020. This is for trips taking place anytime up until 31th January 2021


Application Form Guidance NotesInformation Sheet