Ten reasons you should give through your local community foundation
There are many reasons why you should give to your local community foundation. This #GivingTuesday we’re looking at the top 10.
1. The groups that we fund do amazing, life-changing work
Every single day we see and hear stories of how donors’ money is spent for the good of local communities. Whether it’s a project to help young struggling with their mental health issues through sailing in Cornwall, building an extreme sports hub in Liverpool to address gang activity or a support group for vulnerable dads in East Lothian, community foundations fund some amazing groups who are at the forefront of tackling some of the most pressing issues in society.
2. We’re the original place-based funder and we’re here to stay
“Place” might be the flavour of the month, but community foundations are the original place-based funders. We work with local donors, funders and businesses to create tailored programmes of grant-making. Our financial model means that we are here for the long-term to serve communities across the UK in perpetuity. And we can support small charities and community groups to be more sustainable.
3. Community foundations don’t just write cheques
…Or complete bank transfers. Our network forms long lasting relationships with the groups and individuals who work at the forefront of achieving positive social change in communities all over the UK. And the unique insights these groups possess help build a comprehensive picture of a community’s needs and how best to support them.
4. We help #ShiftThePower to communities
We want to empower grassroots groups to take ownership of the issues that matter to them. Our groups are working on the ground which means that our donors’ money is in the best hands to make the biggest impact. We also take practical steps to devolve power such as convening ‘citizen panels’ where community figures make real decisions about where money is spent.
5. You can give where you live
Sometimes you need to see it to believe it. When you donate to your local community foundation, you’ll be able to see with your own eyes the tangible difference that your money makes on the community you live and work in. Home is where the heart is. It doesn’t matter where you are in the world you can always connect with the place that feels like home by supporting the amazing groups who try to improve it.
6. You’ll be supporting small but vital organisations
It’s a difficult financial climate for small charities and groups, yet they are the backbone of our communities. Your money could be the lifeline they need to stay afloat and continue their vital work. According to the Small Charities Coalition 97 per cent of charities have an income of less than £1m, but they only share 20 per cent of the money that goes to the sector. We even out the playing field by funding these groups who otherwise may lose out to larger charities.
7. We do the legal heavy lifting
If you want to get all the enjoyment of giving but don’t want to get stuck in a legal quagmire of compliance, tax regulation and GiftAid then giving through a community foundation is the right path for you to take.
8. We’re all about the evidence
Community foundations undertake research to identify the issues that need to be funded and do due diligence on the groups we fund. You’ll be able to rest assured that your money will be tackling the most prevalent problems in your locality and funding the groups we know can make a difference on the ground.
9. We’ll find the right groups for you
Small charities and groups are often working under the radar and they aren’t as well-known as their larger counterparts. If trawling through the Charity Commission website or scrolling to page 12 of a Google search to find the right cause isn’t your cup of tea – then get in touch with your local community foundation. Our unparalleled knowledge of charities and groups in any given area will save you a great deal of legwork in finding the groups that best match your cause and we can work with you to develop a tailored plan for your giving.
10. Community foundations are a passionate bunch
Our network is full of driven, compassionate and knowledgeable people who are wholeheartedly committed to improving their local communities through philanthropic giving. Community foundations come in all shapes and sizes but one thing that is resplendent in all is the dedication of our staff and trustees.