Merseyside 100 pioneers new form of giving

L to R – Colin Wardale (Hill Dickinson); David McDonnell (Presenting the award on behalf of Deutsche Bank); Anne Morris, (BWMacfarlane), Andrew Holroyd (Jackson & Canter), Rupert Yeoward (Presenting the award) and Sue Weir (Medicash)

A ‘giving circle’ that allows Merseyside businesses and individuals to help fund community projects is looking for new members.

The Merseyside 100, which was recently named ‘Emerging Philanthropist of the Year’ at the Community Foundation for Merseyside’s Spirit of Merseyside Awards, is a unique philanthropic giving club that brings together dozens of regional businesses, individuals and entrepreneurs to create a new circle of charitable giving.

The scheme launched 18 months ago, aims to support local communities in Merseyside by bringing together like-minded businesses and individuals who are passionate about the region and wish to collaborate together to fundraise and help address key local issues.

It is managed by Community Foundation for Merseyside, which distributes unrestricted funding to enable projects to go ahead that may have been unsuccessful in securing funding elsewhere.

Sarah Lee, Philanthropy Development Senior Officer for the Community Foundation said, “Giving circles like the Merseyside 100 are hard to establish in the UK. As a culture we don’t always like talking about charitable giving - but when key organisations join together and collaboratively pool their ideas and resources, they can have a really big impact.

“There are many advantages to getting involved, and it provides businesses with a fantastic channel through which to effectively meet their philanthropic aims and corporate social responsibility objectives.

So far the giving club has 25 local businesses and individuals represented within it, each donating £1,000 and it has already had a significant impact – but a longer-term objective is to continue expand this membership to 100.

Since January 2011, over £16,000 has been distributed to local projects across Merseyside and the Merseyside 100 has built an endowment fund for the future totalling over £70,000.

Sarah Lee adds, “We are incredibly proud of the achievements of Merseyside 100 so far, but we would love to hear from any more organisations that would be interested in becoming a member.”

The projects that the money has helped to fund so far work across a variety of areas and themes. So far, Merseyside 100 has helped each of the following local charities and community groups:

Peninsula Angling Club , Wirral; Fillies Girls Football Club, Liverpool; West Street Thursday Club, St. Helens; Zero Centre, Wirral; Clapperboard UK, Liverpool; South Sefton ME Support Group, Sefton; Mersey Region Epilepsy Association, Liverpool; Moving On Up Productions, Sefton; ANKUR in Merseyside, Liverpool; North End Writers, Liverpool; Speke Children's Environmental Committee, Liverpool; Voice of Nations, Liverpool; St. Helens and District Stroke Club, St. Helens; Under Construction Crew, St. Helens; Sutton Junior Football Academy, St. Helens; Wirral Society Blind and Partially Sighted, Wirral; Home Start Wirral, Wirral; Wirral Resource Centre and Toy Library, Wirral; Apple Trust, Knowsley; Bootle Salvation Army, Liverpool; and Merseyside Youthbank, Merseyside-wide.

For more information about Merseyside 100, please visit: www.cfmerseyside.org.uk