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Home > News and Events > The cost-of-living crisis: how can local philanthropy make a difference?

The cost-of-living crisis: how can local philanthropy make a difference?

This month we have published our latest Vital Signs report which looks at the cost-of-living crisis. It explains why inflation is increasing so alarmingly, examines in detail how this will affect us in the North East and explores what philanthropists can do to achieve maximum impact with their giving. 

The report recommends three priorities for action. The first – and most pressing – is to help people, families and communities in crisis. At a basic level this means ensuring people are fed and warm, but it also involves helping individuals, families and carers under pressure and ensuring that communities stick together in the face of adversity. The second is supporting community organisations as they face both rising demand and increased operating costs. This is all about ensuring that local groups have the capacity to help their communities whilst remaining financially sustainable. The third is to build long-term resilience in communities. Our view is that philanthropy can make a significant contribution here by supporting local people to contribute to – and so benefit from – the creation of a more productive and prosperous regional economy. In the long-term this is the key to developing the level of financial resilience that can protect individuals, families and communities when times are hard. 

With things as they stand, the cost-of-living crisis is likely to be deeper and longer in the North East than in more prosperous regions of the UK. Meanwhile the international situation remains unstable; the threat of Covid-19 and other potential pandemics remains over us, and climate change is having an increasing impact. We hope our Vital Signs report will inspire giving to both address the current crisis and prepare for what may be a challenging and uncertain future.

At the Community Foundation AGM in October 2022, Chief Executive Rob Williamson announced the launch of a Cost-of-Living Fund to support charities and community organisations in Tyne & Wear and Northumberland so they can help the people most affected by the cost-of-living crisis. You can read more about the fund here.