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Last chance: High Sheriff Youth Awards 2014-15 »

The High Sheriff of Tyne & Wear Fund recognises and rewards local organisations, big and small, which support children and young people, in a safe and secure environment, to develop confidence, to build skills, to find fun and friendship, and in turn learning how to play a part in the community.


The awards complement the work of the High Sheriff, an unpaid voluntary role appointed by HM The Queen, which today concentrates on upholding and supporting the judiciary, police and law enforcement agencies, emergency services, local authorities and all recognised church and faith groups as well as supporting and encouraging the voluntary sector. The role itself is over 1000 years old and dates back to the days when the High Sheriff was responsible for all law and order in the County; it is the oldest secular appointment in the country.

Hundreds of children and young people have benefited from these awards since the High Sheriff Fund was established in 1995. The funding given can make a real difference to the work of the many clubs, centres, organisations involved.  The awards are presented at an annual ceremony which celebrates the achievements of all the children and young people involved and recognises the volunteers who make this all possible.

The closing date for applications to the High Sheriff of Tyne & Wear Fund is 3 November 2014. Awards will be presented to the winners at a presentation ceremony in March 2015 where prizes will range from £250 to £2,000.

For more information about the awards please contact Iain Riddell on 0191 222 0945 or email You can view the Fund guidelines here and download an application form here.

Posted on 28/10/2014 @ 2:24 pm
Filed under: News

A successful year celebrated at the Community Foundation AGM »

On Wednesday 22 October 2014, the Community Foundation Tyne & Wear and Northumberland held its Annual General Meeting at the Sage Gateshead. It was announced that in the year 2013-14 1,369 grants were made totalling £5.2m and 18 new funds were established to support local communities in Tyne & Wear and Northumberland.

The evening commence with a performance by the 2013 Alan Hull Award recipient, Jake Houlsby. The Community Foundation and the Sage Gateshead, which is celebrating its ten year anniversary, have a special relationship as the Foundation hold the Sage Gateshead Fund. Through the generosity of the people, foundations and businesses who contributed, the Fund is now worth 12 million pounds. Through the Fund, Sage Gateshead has received support totalling more than 7 million pounds, which is a testament to the endowment model, as the capital in the Fund is still preserved for perpetuity.

Guest speakers included Anthony Sargent, General Director of Sage Gateshead, who discussed how it uses music as part of the outreach work to benefit local communities. This included a story about a boy who couldn’t speak learning to play the bassoon and a man with dementia recognising his wife for the first time in years after hearing her sing.

Professor Tony Chapman, one of the leading figures behind the Third Sector Trends Study in the North East and Cumbria also spoke on the evening. The Study, which was launched in 2008 by Northern Rock Foundation, seeks to provide authoritative information on the characteristics of the voluntary and community sector. The first phase, from 2008 to 2011, consisted of mapping the scale of the sector and exploring its dynamics. The result was an accurate data set, which has been used to demonstrate the significance of the sector and its activities in the region. However, the evidence drew largely on the period prior to the economic downturn and the large-scale reductions in public funding. Northern Rock Foundation commissioned a second phase of surveys in 2012, and, in 2014 they co-financed, with the Community Foundation, a third phase, repeating data collection from 100s of organisations of all sizes across the region. Professor Chapman discussed how a resilient voluntary sector is bouncing back in hard times.

For more information please download Our Year 2014 here.


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Posted on @ 10:38 am
Filed under: News

100 years of Community Foundations worldwide! »

The Community Foundation movement celebrates 100 years in 2014. The Cleveland Foundation was conceived in 1914 by banker, attorney and philanthropist Frederick H. Goff for the purpose of pooling the charitable gifts of Clevelanders from all walks of life into a single, great, permanent trust to be administered for the betterment of their city. As part of its centennial celebration, the foundation decided to create an atlas that would document the worldwide spread and importance of Goff’s invention.

To view the listing for Tyne & Wear and Northumberland please click here and view the video below for more information about how communities are being supported worldwide.

Posted on @ 3:01 pm
Filed under: News

Nominations for the Beacon Awards 2015 are now open »

The Beacon Awards for Philanthropy has launched a search for the most inspirational philanthropists in the UK. Beacon Awards are presented to those whose giving will inspire others to give and contains useful lessons for other philanthropists.

The main award is the Beacon Award for Philanthropy. In addition Beacon will also be presenting:

  • Beacon Award for Outstanding Philanthropic Foundation
  • Beacon Award for an Outstanding Partnership Between a Philanthropist and a Charity
  • Beacon Award for City Philanthropy (sponsored by the City of London Corporation’s charity, City Bridge Trust through its project City Philanthropy – A Wealth of Opportunity)
  • Beacon Award for Cultural Philanthropy
  • Beacon Award for Impact Investment

The deadline for the nominations is 6pm on Friday 5 December.

For full information about categories and to submit a nomination please visit this page.

To mark the launch of the 2015 awards, and to encourage nominations, Beacon is celebrating ten inspirational philanthropists from cities around the UK, many little known, to kick start a debate about how the UK has been shaped by philanthropy and who has left a ‘philanthropy footprint’ that still affects society today. The full list can be found on this page. Check the hashtag #philanthropyfootprint to see the conversation.

Commenting on the launch on nominations Gay Huey Evans, Chair of the Beacon Awards, said: “The UK has a tradition of philanthropy to be proud of – from George Cadbury, the chocolate heir who set up the Bourneville Village Trust in the 19th Century, to Dame Cicely Saunders who laid the foundations of the modern day hospice movement in the 20th Century.  The Beacon Awards honour the incredible men and women who are building on that heritage in order to inspire others to give.”

Upon receiving her Beacon Award in 2013 J.K. Rowling said: “None of us who are privileged in our daily lives and fortunate enough to have more money than we need should require a pat on the back for the act of giving, but we do need help to spread the word that responsible giving can make a difference; to individuals and communities, locally, nationally, and internationally.  The Beacon Awards are a great way to convey that message.”

Posted on @ 2:37 pm
Filed under: News

TT2 Ltd connecting communities through Give2 Funds at the Community Foundation »

TT2 Ltd has contributed £10,000 to support local communities in North Tyneside and South Tyneside. The donation from the company, which manages the Tyne Tunnels, has received a match of £5,000 to support the Give2 North Tyneside Fund and Give2 South Tyneside Fund at the Community Foundation Tyne & Wear and Northumberland.


TT2 has committed to support local communities in the areas that it operates and the total donation of £15,000 will be split equally between North Tyneside and South Tyneside to support grassroots community causes. In recognition of this donation, TT2 Ltd has been awarded corporate life membership at the Community Foundation and joins a number of other high profile businesses that hold this position.

The Give2 funds support local projects across a wide range of vital themes. The Give2 North Tyneside Fund made an award of £1,000 to the Making Waves Community Choir in North Shields, as a contribution towards their room hire and music tutor costs. The 15th South Shields Boys Brigade received £500 from the Give2 South Tyneside to compete in the Boys Brigade National 5-a-Side Finals in Belfast where they finished as runners up. The young finalists are ranked the top Boys Brigade side in England and competed against the top teams in Scotland and Northern Ireland in May thanks to a grant from the Give2 South Tyneside Fund.


Alan Greener, leader of 15th South Shields Boys Brigade added:

“The Boys Brigade is delighted to receive a grant of £500 from the Community Foundation which allowed us to attend the national finals in Belfast. To play in a cup final was a really special achievement and a dream that has been realised for many of the young players.”

The gift from TT2 Ltd means more grassroots projects can receive the support they need. Give2 Funds at the Community Foundation allow people and business to make a gift of any size to support grassroots social action in their local area.

Rachel Turnbull, Chief Executive of TT2 Ltd added:

“Through the Give2 Funds we can support local projects directly in our area of operation such as the Making Waves Community Choir in North Shields and the 15th South Shields Boys Brigade. The Tyne Tunnels connect local communities, and through the Give2 Funds we are committed to supporting local grassroots voluntary groups access the support they need to continue their work in the community.”

Lisa Cappleman, Head of Philanthropy Development at the Community Foundation added:

“TT2 is a great example of a corporate supporter who believes strongly in giving back to their local community. Corporate philanthropy is an important part of how a business can operate, and we’re delighted that we have been able to recognise this commitment by awarding TT2 with life membership status.”

The Give2 Funds are held by the Community Foundation Tyne & Wear and Northumberland, and match is available from a Government scheme called Community First through which the the Fund can receive £1 for every £2 given. The scheme is designed to encourage giving by individual, family and corporate donors, and to make effective use of charitable trust funds that have not been in active use. The match is coming to an end, and is currently available on a first come first served basis as part of a national pot.

For more information about the Give2 Funds at the Community Foundation please visit:

Posted on 16/10/2014 @ 11:59 am
Filed under: Uncategorized

Vital Signs Update 2014 »

The Community Foundation Tyne & Wear and Northumberland has launched a Vital Signs Update 2014, to present the impact of the Vital Signs Tyne & Wear and Vital Signs Northumberland reports that were published in 2013.

Vital Signs is designed to help inform the work of community philanthropists by starting a discussion about local priorities for charitable giving. The good news is that Vital Signs Update 2014 finds a reasonably good match between charitable spend through the Community Foundation and priorities identified through research into local needs and consultations with local residents.

The Community Foundation uses its unrestricted Vital Tyne & Wear and Vital Northumberland funds to support the development of community philanthropy. Around 75% of fund expenditure goes directly in grants to community and voluntary organisations, and the rest for fund development and policy initiatives.  Vital Grants are used to invest in projects that support vulnerable communities and services at risk and donor engagement with less popular causes; demonstrate good or innovative practice; enable organisations and communities to respond to unforeseen circumstances (e.g. natural disasters); contribute to the Community Foundation’s leadership work in relation to community philanthropy; address priorities identified in the Vital Signs reports.

In 2013 the Community Foundation made 8 Vital Grants worth £41,900. In 2014 the Community Foundation expect to match this figure, but with an additional allocation of £50,000 for a small number of projects that demonstrate how community philanthropy can help those at risk of exclusion from Work.

Building Futures East suffered catastrophic damage after two feet of water engulfed its premises in December 2013. The Vital Tyne & Wear Fund awarded £3,867 to help with additional costs not covered by insurance. The charity offers training to unemployed local people of all ages, helping them gain formal qualifications. The grant enabled it to temporarily repair workshops and training areas to preserve training on site, and reduce disruption to services.

Anthony Woods-Waters, Chief Executive of Building Futures East said:

“During the flood, the water levels rose so quickly that a huge amount of damage was caused. The Vital Grant we received was invaluable and we are very grateful that an emergency award was provided so quickly meaning our service could continue to support local unemployed people in our region.”

However there are gaps. Vital Signs Update 2014 reveals that many people believe that supporting work-related projects is one area where philanthropy could add value to existing provision particularly for younger people. The report sets out the Community Foundation’s intentions for further action on this issue.

Mark Pierce, Head of Policy and Programmes at the Community Foundation said:

“Vital Signs is a community health check that looks at the problems that our local communities are facing. It is an important way for us to help our donors think about the impact of their philanthropic giving and it’s not the end of a conversation; but the beginning of a conversation about how we can use philanthropic giving to support the vital issues in the area which we live.”

Vital Signs is now being used by local philanthropists, regional and national grant makers and grantees to help support the good work that is being done in local communities. In 2015 – 2016 the Community Foundation will be publishing further Vital Signs reports to look at how charitable donors can help build on the many positive aspects of life in our local communities.

For more information about Vital Signs and to download the 2014 update please visit

Posted on @ 11:57 am
Filed under: News

Local woods receive financial boost through LEAF »

LEAF 4The Woodland Trust has received a grant from a Local Environment Action Fund (LEAF) at the Community Foundation Tyne & Wear and Northumberland to re-vitalise two woods in the North East.

Letah Wood in Northumberland and Harraton Woods in Tyne and Wear have benefitted from a grant to make the woods more visitor and wildlife friendly.

Harraton Woods was awarded over £4,000 to put towards improving access through the creation of new paths and the thinning of existing woodland. It is hoped that the changes will encourage even more locals to visit the woodland. Letah Wood was also in need of aid, and will receive over £6,000 to remove non-native conifers and plant replacement trees. This work will encourage more native species to return to the woodland.

Funding was awarded through the LEAF, which empowers local individuals and groups such as Letah Woods, by funding projects which aim to encourage local communities to engage in environmental activities, change behaviours leading to more local environmental action, have a positive impact on the environment and share learning about the environment with others. The Fund is due to launch an appeal for further funders to join the environmental collaboration.

Katie Wellstead, Environment Partnerships Manager at the Community Foundation said:

“LEAF is a collaborative Fund between the Community Foundation, the Greggs Foundation, the Shears Foundation, and an anonymous donor. We’re looking for further funders to join us so that we can support more community and voluntary sector groups to make a positive difference such as Letah Woods with impactful environmental grant-making in our region.”

Sara Wood, regional development officer for the Woodland Trust said: “It’s brilliant to receive support like this from LEAF. The works that are now being completed mean the woods will be more welcoming to people and wildlife.  We hope that people will want to come and explore more woods in the North East as a result. We have additional plans for Letah Wood, and another of our woods in Northumberland, and still need more funding to make some vital improvements. You can find out more and make a donation at

Letah and Harraton Woods are just two of many fantastic woods to visit in the region. To find out more about local woods, visit  To find out more about LEAF please visit .

Posted on @ 11:52 am
Filed under: News,Uncategorized

Grants of £1.4m to be made through the first round of the Newcastle Culture Investment Fund »

Newcastle Vision for Culture bigAn innovative new fund aimed at cultural organisations across Newcastle has awarded £1.4m during its first round.

The Newcastle Culture Investment Fund at the Community Foundation Tyne & Wear and Northumberland will award grants to 17 organisations totalling £1,420,000 across the city in its first round. The fund, a partnership with Newcastle City Council, was set up with a commitment of £600,000 a year from the local authority. Organisations in the city were able to apply for up to three years’ support for core activities or for a one-year project grant. The successful organisations include several who had not previously had regular funding from Newcastle City Council.

To oversee the fund, the Community Foundation established an independent panel with experts from the arts, health and business, as well as two members nominated by Newcastle City Council. The panel was chaired by Fiona Ellis, former Director of Northern Rock Foundation, who said:

“The panel were impressed by the range and quality of cultural work being done in the city. In making our recommendations, we took account of other sources of support and funding facilitated or provided by the local authority. We also sought to balance the needs of applicants in this first round with the flexibility of being able to respond to new requests in future years. We are delighted that the 17 organisations that will receive grants represent such a broad range, including those who had not received regular funding from the Council previously.”

The Leader of Newcastle City Council, Cllr Nick Forbes, who instigated the fund and sat on the panel, said:

“Today the first beneficiaries of the Newcastle Cultural Investment Fund have been announced. I’d like to thank our partners the Community Foundation for managing this process so well.

“I know all the projects awarded funding will benefit our city and demonstrate the difference that culture can make to people’s lives. The task now begins to grow this innovative approach to arts funding which aims to combine public sector support with donations from individuals and institutions.”

Now that the first round is complete, the Community Foundation and City Council will consider plans for extending the Fund through philanthropic gifts.

Rob Williamson, Chief Executive of the Community Foundation said:

“The Community Foundation has a long-standing interest in developing philanthropy in the arts. Now that the Newcastle Culture Investment Fund is established, we look forward to working with the City Council on finding ways to grow giving through the Fund. We hope the first-round projects will inspire a range of donors, and that the remaining public sector element of the fund will act as a catalyst for new gifts.”

For more information about the Newcastle Culture Investment Fund please contact Adam Lopardo on 0191 222 0945 or email

Posted on 15/10/2014 @ 2:48 pm
Filed under: News

Vital Signs Update 2014 »




Today sees the launch of Vital Signs Update 2014, bringing you up to speed on the impact our Vital Signs reports have had since their publication in 2013.

The report is available now on our website here, and many of you will receive a copy in the post within the next few days. If you would like further copies, please contact us at the address below, and please share our Vital Signs video to continue the conversation about the vital issues that face our community.

Our Vital Signs reports are designed to help inform the work of community philanthropists by starting a discussion about local priorities for charitable giving. The good news is that Vital Signs Update 2014 finds a reasonably good match between charitable spend through the Community Foundation and priorities identified through our research into local needs and consultations with local residents.

However there are gaps. Vital Signs Update 2014 reveals that many of you believe with us that supporting work-related projects is one area where philanthropy could perhaps add value to existing provision particularly for younger people. The report sets out our intentions for further action on this issue.

We are pleased to report that Vital Signs is now being used by local philanthropists, regional and national grant makers and grantees to help support the good work that is being done in local communities. In 2015 – 2016 we will be publishing further Vital Signs reports. These will look at how charitable donors can help build on the many positive aspects of life in our local communities. As always, we will look forward to hearing your views on the issues raised.

Kind regards,



Rob Williamson
Chief Executive

Posted on 07/10/2014 @ 10:30 am
Filed under: News

UKCF announces manifesto for community philanthropy »


UK Community Foundations (UKCF), the national body of which the Community Foundation Tyne & Wear and Northumberland is a member, is calling on the next government to make charitable giving easier and more strategic with its manifesto for the next general election.  Special Giving Zones, modelled on Social Exclusion Zones, would prioritise investments in areas of greatest need, making it more attractive and tax efficient for donors to target their donations into geographical areas.

Stephen Hammersley, CEO of UKCF, said: “Our evidence is that philanthropists who have created their own wealth are interested in ways of using that wealth to achieve social good beyond traditional grants. They want to invest back in their communities to promote sustainable development and to see their investment grow and achieve results beyond the initial sum. Treating donations as a social investment means money goes further and is used in a more sustainable way.”

As part of the manifesto for community philanthropy released last week, UKCF recommends that Government continues to use match-funded endowment challenges to promote more local giving. The current 50% match challenge programme run through community foundations, Community First, created £45 million worth of extra money for small charities and community groups last year, based on a £15 million investment from the Cabinet Office.

The other key recommendations from the UKCF manifesto are:

  • Establishing a one-off £30m ‘Philanthropy Infrastructure Investment Fund’ providing seed capital for projects that release giving.
  • Investing in smaller organisations that have high impact volunteer work that could be scaled up, rather than investing in programmes that just increase the supply of volunteers who may or may not offer skills needed by charities to carry out their work.

Of the manifesto, Hammersley said: “With £65 million invested in small charities and community groups last year, community foundations already provide invaluable funding and support across the UK. We see how the philanthropic acts of many accumulate to develop highly resilient webs of support for communities across the nations. But we are working in challenging conditions, with growing demand and decreasing funding. The recommendations in this manifesto are a strategic response that will mobilise people to make local communities more resilient and self-reliant.”

To download of copy of the UKCF manifesto please click here.

Posted on 30/09/2014 @ 6:27 pm
Filed under: News
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Community Foundation Tyne & Wear and Northumberland - Enriching lives through effective giving

Cale Cross
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Newcastle upon Tyne
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