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Since 2010, we have seen the transformational impact of the support provided by the RCN Foundation – transformational for nursing and midwifery staff, and transformational to the care that they provide every day to individuals and communities.

Our strategic plan is about continuing the journey of transformation which is why it has been co-created with nursing and midwifery staff, so that their views and feedback are integral to our future priorities.

Read our strategic plan in full full here.


The challenges presented by the current climate make the period ahead an important one for the RCN Foundation. Over the next five years, we will increase our support in the three core areas of our work – hardship, education and learning, and research and innovation, ensuring that the voices of nursing and midwifery, and of those with lived experience, are reflected throughout all our work. 


There remains a need to support the most vulnerable members of the nursing and midwifery communities – those facing hardship because of illness, violence, disability, or financial constraints. We will enhance our provision by offering those that need it, a sustainable pathway beyond their current challenges, with at least 50% of our grant making activity being targeted at areas of greatest deprivation and health inequality. We will also fund key initiatives which focus on the health and wellbeing of nursing and midwifery staff, identifying the clear outcomes expected from this work.

Education and learning

Through our co-creation exercise, support for education and learning activities was identified by nursing and midwifery staff themselves as being their most important priority. As such, we will widen access to education and learning opportunities for nursing and midwifery staff by developing partnerships with individuals and organisations who share our ethos and values. We also intend to increase the number of individuals’ lives improved annually either through education or hardship support to by 25%.

Research and innovation

Having already developed a robust body of funded research, and identified where we can add the most value, the RCN Foundation is well placed to respond to the nursing and midwifery research agenda. We will set out our approach in a new research and innovation strategy which will underpin, and contribute to the overall delivery of, this strategic plan. Our total annual expenditure on research and innovation will increase 40%, to £0.5 million. As well as focusing on what research we will fund, we will also set out where and how we can add most value by building the research capacity for nursing- and midwifery-led research across health and social care.

Learn more about our award winning work and what we hope to achieve by 2028:

Strategic aims

Underpinning our strategic plan will be a number of enabling strategies – grant-making, research and innovation, fundraising and communications, people and finance – which will provide the RCN Foundation with a firm basis from which to deliver the transformation that is needed.

     Strategy diagram

  • Strategic aim 1 – hardship: Supporting nursing and midwifery in times of need
  • Strategic aim 2 – education and learning: Investing in the future of nursing and midwifery through our programme of education and learning grants
  • Strategic aim 3 – research and innovation: Developing and delivering a research and innovation strategy, that will have at its core the funding of nursing- and midwifery-led projects that improve patient care, health and wellbeing
  • Community – communities bring people together to advocate for and support each other, and provide a sense of belonging, all of which is important to enabling transformational change
  • Connections – connecting with those who share our values and ethos will be central to the success of this strategic plan.

By 2028, we intend to have increased the number of our partnerships by 400%.

     2028 in numbers  
If you would like to find out more about how you or your organisation can support our strategic goals, please email us at

Read our strategic plan to learn more about our plans.

Strategy diagram

Investing in the future for nursing and midwifery: shaping the health and care agenda together

RCN Foundation Director, Deepa Korea, shares her thoughts on the Foundation's strategy and our plans for the next 5 years.