“Charitable Trusts West Midlands has become a CIO (Charitable Incorporated Organisation) and officially changed its name to WM Funders Network. Established in 1975, it is the leading regional membership network of charitable trusts, foundations and social investors.

Chair, Pauline Roche, explains: “Our aim with these changes is to reflect the broadening of our membership base to include organisations other than charitable trusts which are involved in, or have an interest in, funding in the West Midlands. We are looking to bring people together to exchange ideas, co-ordinate and collaborate efforts, and engage formally with private and public funders and their networks, so that the overall positive impact of funding on the diverse communities of our region is maximised.”

WM Funders Network currently has 67 members, representing large national foundations such as BBC Children in Need and Comic Relief and social investors such as Charity Bank and UnLtd to smaller family trusts such as Barrow Cadbury Trust and Bewley Charitable Trust that give grants and social finance to the voluntary and community sector, social enterprises and individuals.

Debbie Pippard,  Head of Programmes at Barrow Cadbury Trust, one of the founding trusts of WM Funders Network, a social justice grant giver that uses all of its resources to bring about positive structural change said   “From the start, we felt that it vital that funders in the West Midlands have a place to meet to discuss best practice and working together, so that the precious funds we have available can be used in the very best way possible to help local people”

Over time, the organisation’s activities have expanded to provide a programme of seminars, briefings, training workshops and networking opportunities as well as disseminate news and information. These activities enable members to explore matters of common concern and forge productive relationships with other types of funders and social investors that has increased the impact of local grant giving and investment in the West Midlands region.

Charity Bank exists to lend to charities and social enterprises and joined WM Funders Network in 2013, Peter Hughes, Regional Manager stated “we became members of the Network to engage with other funders working in the West Midlands with a view to working together where possible to share best practice and ensure frontline organisation are provided with the support they need where”

WM Funders Network is a strong and dynamic organisation, which welcomes new members and supporters.”
Please contact: Dipali Chandra, Secretary, WM Funders Network on 07980 55 55 76
 

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