Press release

Winners of the Innovation in Giving Fund announced today

The Cabinet Office and NESTA today announce the first 15 investments to be funded from the £10million Innovation in Giving Fund

15 February 2012

The Cabinet Office and NESTA today announce the first 15 investments to be funded from the £10million Innovation in Giving Fund which aims to find and back innovative ideas for increasing volunteering and charitable giving. 

The Innovation in Giving Fund was launched in September 2011 by Nick Hurd, Minister for Civil Society as part of a £34million package to increase levels of social action. It is managed by NESTA, the UK’s innovation agency. Over 430 applications for funding were received and 62 were shortlisted to pitch their ideas to a selection panel between December 2011 and March 2012.

The first organisations to receive funding are:

  • BlueDot: a new social currency that rewards people for doing good  things such as -  volunteering, donating or liking non-profits on Facebook - with exclusive celebrity products and work experience; all of which then add up to a shareable ‘good CV’.
  • Payroll Local: a project led by The new economics foundation (nef) with Lambeth Council  and monea using the Brixton Pound electronic currency to enable staff to support local businesses and donate to local charities and social enterprises.
  • Buzzbnk: who currently run an on-line crowd-funding platform linking social ventures looking for start-up or growth capital with like-minded people keen to fund with small amounts of money, are planning to “Go Mobile” enabling full mobile capability for their on-line crowd-funding platform.
  • care4care: will be a joint collaboration between Professor Heinz Wolff from Tools for Living, The Young Foundation and Age Concern, Isle of Wight. care4care will be a membership organisation where members spend a few hours a week supporting an older person in their own local community, and in return build up their own “care pension” for their own future needs.
  • Cool2Care: a new Family Reciprocity programme from the family-carer introduction agency and training body that recruits, screens and trains individuals to work as Personal Assistants for disabled children and young people.
  • Hackney Shares: a borough-wide timebank network for the exchange of time and resources for people and organisations, facilitated by an online platform.
  • Horsesmouth: a safe, moderated online venue for informal one-to-one mentoring covering all the important aspects of life, from health and wellbeing to career choices, employability and business support.
  • Peoplefund.it: a crowd-funding platform that enables people with great business ideas, that might just change the world, to raise funding and gain public support, from the makers of River Cottage and Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall’s Fish Fight. 
  • Project Dirt: is a grass roots social networking site that enables people and organisations to give their time, expertise and/or resources to local environmental projects.
  • Slivers-of-Time: a social business working with three councils; Bristol, Hertfordshire and Newham to develop and scale a web based platform that makes it easy for people to volunteer their odd hours between other commitments to voluntary organisations.
  • Solar Schools: an innovative project, run by the 10:10 campaign, that enables schools to crowd-fund the cost of installing solar panels.
  • The Good Gym: a community enterprise that connects people who want to get fit, with physical tasks that need to be done and which benefit the community.
  • Timebanking UK: will develop and implement Community Weaver 2.1, an open-source, free-to-use platform to significantly reduce the barriers to entry for setting up, joining or managing local timebanks. 
  • Timto.co.uk:  an online social gifting platform that makes donating to charity an integral part of organising a celebration or special occasion.
  • Tyze Personal Networks: private, secure, online networks that provide support to both people requiring care and their volunteer carers to improve health and social outcomes.

Nick Hurd, Minister for Civil Society, said:

These organisations clearly demonstrate the visionary ideas that are changing the way we volunteer, give and share. What we are starting to see through the Innovation in Giving Fund are the vast pools of untapped potential and ideas that exists across the country. By being able to invest in these ideas we really hope to make a significant difference to the scale and nature of giving in this country.

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