Trust to look at how Environmental Sector is Funded in the Future with NIEL and NPC

Trust to look at how Environmental Sector is Funded in the Future with NIEL and NPC

05 August 2015

The Trust, along with Northern Ireland Environmental Link, are pleased to announce they will be working with New Philanthropy Capital (NPC) to research the potential of social investment to finance the activity of the Environmental NGO sector in Northern Ireland.

This follows NPC’s recent in-depth work on social financing, including the report Smart money published at the end of last year.

This project will consider the potential for social investment in all its forms to support the activity of the environmental NGO sector in Northern Ireland by completion of a range of key tasks.

This will include analysis of the current financial support mechanisms and financing for environmental NGOs in NI and analysis of the current pressures and problems around core funding and multi-annual funding to environmental NGOs.

NPC will look at new and alternative forms of finance for the activity of environmental NGOs in NI with an emphasis on social finance and they will also consider the longer term potential to create an environment fund which could be used for actions including small grants, collaborative projects, and match funding.

NPC will identify and prioritise the next steps needed to support such development in the sector including securing appropriate investment and identifying actions needed in respect of policy development and implementation.

Nigel McKinney, Director of Operations at the Building Change Trust, said: ‘We are delighted to announce NPC as the sucessful bidder and are looking forward to working with them looking at how this vital and vibrant sector can be funded in the future.

“Having recently seen government cuts to the environmental sector, this research into how the sector can fund itself and become more sustainable couldn’t be timelier”.

Craig McGuicken, Chief Executive of NIEL said: “The environment sector in Northern Ireland is going through a very difficult time, and we all know that budgets are going to continue to be tight for the foreseeable future.

“Over the past few years we have been exploring ways to help the sector become more financially resilient, and social finance is likely to be part of the long term solution.

“We are looking forward to working with NPC, and are grateful to the Trust for their support of the project”.

Abigail Rotheroe, Deputy Head of the Charity Team at NPC, said: “With finances increasingly tight, foundations and charities are wise to explore alternative ways to raise funds to continue their essential work.

“We are very excited to work alongside the Building Change Trust and Northern Ireland Environmental Link.

“Social financing is a complex and relatively new part of the landscape for the voluntary sector, but if organisations get it right then there is real potential to fund effective work long into the future”. 

Click here to find out more about the Trust's work in Social Finance.