City Funds Stakeholder Gathering 1

29th January, 2020

City Funds Stakeholders gathered over two days in December to plan for 2020 at an event organised with the help of Charities Aid Foundation and the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport.

Quartet Community Foundation is among the founding partners of the City Funds initiative, working alongside Bristol City Council and Bristol & Bath Regional Capital to help solve the biggest problems facing the city.

City Funds has a vision to see Bristol as a thriving and healthy city, built on fairness and environmental sustainability.

City Funds will focus on four priorities: No Child Goes Hungry, Economic Inclusion, Community Initiatives and Environmental Transformation.

The City Funds venture, described by Financial Times as the first of its kind in the UK, brings together the public and private sectors, mixing investment and grant-funding within a place-based approach, to target the causes of inequalities in Bristol.

What makes the City Funds special is that it brings together 50 experts from more than 30 local organisations, active in the community, business and civic sectors, who share a commitment to address some of the biggest social and environmental challenges in the city, by supporting organisations and projects with a transformational impact at a grassroots level.

Bringing additional funding in grants and impact investments towards concrete solutions to some of Bristol’s most intractable issues is at the top of the City Funds 2020 agenda. Having secured the first two investors, Big Society Capital and Bristol City Council, for a total of £10 million, City Funds will be able to invest in loans or equity in early 2020. Grant programs are expected to be set up later this year thanks to generous support from trusts and foundations, local businesses and the wider public involved in an experimental Place-Based Giving Scheme.

During two half-day workshops stakeholders of the City Funds were invited to solve a puzzle: how to identify genuinely transformational projects while building trust and accountability. The main outcome of the event was to move from the concept of system change to its practicality. After two days of reflection, City Funds is now ready to support the most promising initiatives thanks to the expertise of the Funding Priority Groups members.

One City Funds Gathering participant said:

“We all share the spirit to make changes in the city, and act on its shape.

We all want to have a transformational impact on social and economic systems.

We all want to have a tangible action and to keep resolving issues affecting Bristol.”

Organisations and projects working on City Funds priority areas can get in touch about funding or investment: