Foundation targets those who need it most
More than £5 million has been awarded by the Bank of Scotland Foundation for over 500 Scottish charities in 2022.
This equates to helping more than 200,000 people access essential local services and personal support when they needed it most.
The awards were from a combination of the charity's grants and matched giving programmes, as well as additional funding specifically to help charities with the cost of living crisis.
Over £4.3million was distributed to 146 charities through the Foundation's three grants programmes, Reach, Invest and Change. Providing grants of between £1,000-£25,000 for one year, Reach is the charity's regular programme, and is aimed at smaller charities with an annual income of £1m or less.
Providing funding of between £10,000 and £50,000 per year over two to five years, the Foundation's Invest programme focused once more on supporting charities with an annual income of £50,000 - £1m that addressed disadvantage or social exclusion, helping vulnerable people across Scotland manage a variety of issues including mental health, loneliness, and poverty.
Aimed at larger charities with an annual income of £500,000 - £5m in 2022, charities were able to apply for unrestricted funding for a second year through the Change programme.
Offering grants of between £50,000 and £100,000 per year over one to two years, the programme extended a lifeline to charities, allowing them to apply for whatever was their greatest priority and area of need - whether that was capital costs, project work, specific operating costs or unrestricted funding.
Having seen the hugely positive impact that their Covid-19 contingency awards made to charities in 2020, all of the Foundation's 173 current grantees were offered a 10% grant uplift in August to ensure they could continue to deliver their services. Most of the charities used their share of the £318,580 help with rising core costs, while the remainder used it to support their original grant purpose.
Concerned that some charities would not be able to survive the coming year, the Foundation also increased the budgets of their remaining 2022 programmes by £650,000 to ensure more charities could benefit from its programmes and reach a greater number of people in need.
Lloyds Banking Group employees in Scotland helped more than 300 charities to receive a much-needed boost in funding through the Foundation's Matched Giving programme.
This enables Group employees to claim up to £1,000 per year for an eligible charity, a maximum of £500 for fundraising events and/or £500 for voluntary time given (£8 per hour).
In 2022, over £327,000 in claims were approved by the Foundation thanks to Group employees who volunteered their time or organised fundraising events – everything from marathons, to bake sales and quiz nights – in support of causes that held special meaning to them. This incredible effort has made a real difference in the lives of countless individuals and communities.
Donald MacKechnie, chair of the Foundation's Board of Trustees said, "Already impacted heavily by supporting their communities through the Covid pandemic over the last two years, charities were dealt another severe blow last year due to the cost of living crisis. Faced with increasing running costs, they now had to cope with an increase in the number of people dependent on the services they provide.
"With the impacts of inflation looking to be with us for some time, our work to support charities at this critical time would not be possible without the annual donation from our sole funder, Lloyds Banking Group, and the efforts of its colleagues. We are extremely grateful for their support as it means we can continue to help charities make a real difference to the lives of some of the most vulnerable people in Scotland."