Our Impact

From 1 April 2014 to 31 March 2015, the Community Foundation made 1,355 grants worth £5.4 million from funds established by our donors and partners – an increase of £0.2m on the previous year.

We received 2,332 requests for support, roughly the same as in 2013-14. Of these, 360 were for organisations nominated by fund advisors. The success rate was 50% for the 1,962 applications from groups and individuals.

impact-1

In 2015, as in previous years, most of our grants were for sums under £5,000, but the majority of funding was allocated in larger grants. Whilst the average grant was £4,000, the proportion between £5,000 and £10,000 increased to 22% of the total awarded, up from 12% in the previous year.The bulk of our grant-making tends to be for organisations with a turnover of £50,000 to £250,000 – the SMEs of the voluntary sector in the region. Compact for Race Equality in South Tyneside (CREST) was one such organisation that received a grant for its ‘Gis a chance’ project, which trains and raises the aspirations of young unemployed people from black and ethnic minority communities.

However, depending on the wishes of our donors, grant-making can extend to bigger organisations. For example, in 2015, the Platten Family Fund made a founding grant of £50,000 to support the creation of the IGNITE Centre for Engineering & Innovation at TyneMet College in North Tyneside, in line with the philanthropic vision of Tony Platten to support more young people to think about a career in engineering.

Larger grants are also often made possible through our funding partnerships. A three-year Henry Smith Charity grant of £103,000, for example, is currently supporting the provision of family support at North Tyneside Carer’s Centre.

Adding to our portfolio of grant-making programmes also enables us to reach across different communities. Sunderland is a part of our area that has benefited less from philanthropic funds at the Community Foundation, and this year we secured a new funding scheme for the Hendon and Ryhope areas of the city.

The programme, called Fourteen, was established by Spirit of 2012 as a legacy of the 2014 Commonwealth Games and the London 2012 Olympics and Paralympics. With matching support from Sunderland Council and private donors, Fourteen will support improved wellbeing, tackle misconceptions about disability, help people overcome isolation and better connect them through social activity and volunteering

Whilst Tyne & Wear and Northumberland are our principal areas of benefit, 15% of grants in 2014-15, representing nearly a third of the total sum awarded, was for work in Durham, the Tees Valley or which benefited the North East region as a whole. This was a slight increase on regional grant-making in 2013-14. The Henry Smith Charity North East Grants Fund is one of our key regional funds. Hartlepool Food Bank benefitted from a £10,000 grant for core costs from the fund in 2015.

impact-2

Larger grants are also often made possible through our funding partnerships. A three-year Henry Smith Charity grant of £103,000, for example, is currently supporting the provision of family support at North Tyneside Carer’s Centre.

Adding to our portfolio of grant-making programmes also enables us to reach across different communities. Sunderland is a part of our area that has benefited less from philanthropic funds at the Community Foundation, and this year we secured a new funding scheme for the Hendon and Ryhope areas of the city.

The programme, called Fourteen, was established by Spirit of 2012 as a legacy of the 2014 Commonwealth Games and the London 2012 Olympics and Paralympics. With matching support from Sunderland Council and private donors, Fourteen will support improved wellbeing, tackle misconceptions about disability, help people overcome isolation and better connect them through social activity and volunteering.

impact-2

Whilst Tyne & Wear and Northumberland are our principal areas of benefit, 15% of grants in 2014-15, representing nearly a third of the total sum awarded, was for work in Durham, the Tees Valley or which benefitted the North East region as a whole. This was a slight increase on regional grant-making in 2013-14. The Henry Smith Charity North East Grants Fund is one of our key regional funds. Hartlepool Food Bank benefitted from a £10,000 grant for core costs from the fund in 2015.

The vast majority of grants are intended to support the provision of effective services or activities (78% of grants made, totalling £4.3m), and to benefit the community as a whole. A grant from the Esmée Fairbairn North East Fund to South Tyneside Positive Activities & Targeted Youth Support Group, for example, enabled young people to contribute to their community through
voluntary work. The Community Foundation also funds organisations to develop. Women’s Health in South Tyneside (WHIST) received one such grant to improve its computer
equipment and so the delivery of its services. Meanwhile, a smaller but no less important aspect of our funding is helping organisations that are seeking to bring about improvements in policy or practice in their field. In 2014-15, 62 grants totalling £215,633 were for this purpose.

Some funds and grants focus more specifically on a particular beneficiary group. In 2014-15, children and young people benefitted directly from 29% of all the funds distributed, about the same as in the previous year.

Spend on projects benefitting black and minority ethnic (BME) communities, and for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) communities, remained at the previous year’s levels of 5% and 1% of the total awarded respectively. The proportion of the total amount for disabled people fell slightly from 8% to 5%, while there was a small increase to 7% from 6% in the sum for projects targeting older people.

impact5

A significant element of the latter is our Kellett Fund which supports organisations like St Martin’s Centre Partnership in East Newcastle which received £89,168 over three years for a programme of activities and to run an older people’s forum.