2007 was a year of change Apple launched the iPhone, Facebook and Twitter went global and Airbnb was founded – it was a year when we became ‘connected’.
On a much quieter scale on the 2nd April 2017 the Foundation for Social Improvement (FSI) took its first steps to support small charities in the UK. The whole premise behind the FSI was to support small charities to gain skills that, most often due to cost, were out of their reach. So we started by delivering fundraising training, a fundraising conference, drop in advice sessions, partnering small charities to build their sustainability and creating fundraising opportunities and products so that small charities could directly fundraise on their own behalf.
Whilst still a small charity ourselves, over the last 10 years the FSI has grown it’s support to become one of the largest providers of free and heavily subsidised support to small and local charities and community groups across the UK. In total the value of support we have delivered back to our members has risen from £360,000 in year one to over £2 million in 2014/15. We estimate by the end of this year we will have delivered over £10 million of value in free or heavily subsidised support to our now 5,417 members since 2007. We have seen the needs of our members change over the years and this year we have added governance support and on-line learning opportunities to our menu of support.
To celebrate our 10 year Anniversary we are launching the Small Charity Big Impact Awards, 10 award packages aimed at charities of all sizes. The awards will shine a light on the huge impact that small civil society organisations make to the communities they serve.
The ability of the FSI to continue to support our members relies heavily on those who embraced the idea of an organisation like the FSI from the beginning and so to those who have been supporting us over the last 10 years like the Leathersellers’ Company, Santander Foundation and the Westminster Foundation, we say a huge thank you as we do to those who currently give us their support.
So, whilst we cannot claim to have remodelled ourselves year on year, like the iPhone we can claim that we have flexed our support to meet the needs of our members and. Like everyone else in the UK we are not certain about what the future will hold for our members, what we are certain of is that we will continue to be there to support them helping them to be the best they can be so that they are able to support those in society, in the UK and further afield, who vitally need their support.
Pauline Broomhead, CEO of the FSI
You can enter the awards via the Small Charity Week website - http://smallcharityweek.com/small-charity-big-impact-day/