12:45PM, Friday 11 July 2014
The Spoore, Merry and Rixman Foundation was set up in the 17th century as a way of helping children and young people under the age of 25 who are struggling to afford educational costs.
It can also support organisations providing education.
Applications are accepted by people living in the old borough of Maidenhead and the ancient parish of Bray, including Holyport, Fifield and Woodlands Park.
Ian Thomas, vice chairman of the charity and trustee, said: "We're not getting enough applications.
"If there are youngsters around Maidenhead who are looking to go university or take up an apprenticeship we can help and make a difference.
"We're looking to bridge that gap."
The charity, which is funded by rents from its properties and income from investments, can help individuals and organisations. It consider applications for help with university and college costs, apprenticeship costs such as tools, school uniform, educational visits, musical instruments, sports equipment, travel costs and extra-curricular lessons. It can even help with the cost of an interview suit.
Organisations which have received funding from the charity for educational purposes include Norden Farm Centre for the Arts, Holyport Youth Club and the Alexander Devine Children's Hospice Service as well as a number of schools.
Last year Cllr Colin Rayner (Con, Horton and Wraysbury) criticised the charity for not spending more of its funds, after sitting on the board of trustees in his capacity as the then Mayor of Windsor and Maidenhead.
Trustee Grahame Fisher said Cllr Rayner did not understand the restrictions on how the foundation worked.
"We were only allowed to use the income from the trust, which was between £300,000-£350,000 a year. Now we can spend in the region of £650,000-£700,000 a year due to a change in the Charity Commission's rules," he said.
The charity will meet at Maidenhead Town Hall on Monday where it hopes to approve £130,000 in funding for various projects.
Visit smrfmaidenhead.org.uk for an application form.
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