Charity Bank pledges to 'transform' sector in the north

Charity Bank in the North has been officially opened with a promise from its chief executive to "transform the financial landscape of the sector" in the Yorkshire and Humber region.

The bank is offering a range of finance options to organisations in the region, from seed-corn and patient capital to equity and loans, as well as various support services traditionally provided by support agencies. The services, designed to help organisations adopt a more business-like approach, include business planning, concept proofing, assessments of readiness for development and access to online diagnostic tools and reference materials.

Malcolm Hayday, chief executive of Charity Bank, said: “Many organisations still rely on grant funding or gift giving, but they need to consider a more strategic approach that embraces funding and finance if they want to ensure their futures. Charity Bank’s new programme will not only identify where organisations are on the funding staircase, but it can help them work out what they need to do.”

The bank’s Leeds office intends to make more than £20m available to organisations in the area. Regional development agency Yorkshire Forward has invested £10m in the project.

“Our mission is not just to help community groups become more sustainable, but to transform the financial landscape of the sector,” said Hayday. “We want to facilitate a more diverse approach to funding, to improve organisational strength and to set organisations on the road to independence – in short, to increase the long-term viability of individual organisations and the sector as a whole.”

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