Ethnic body hires marketing chief

LUCY MAGGS

The Ethnic Minority Foundation has appointed a new marketing and fundraising director to raise an endowment of £100 million to provide long-term funding for black and minority ethnic (BME) groups.

The organisation aims to raise the money within the next five to 10 years. Jim Swindells, director of marketing and fundraising, said: "We are aiming to create long-term funding and sustainability for a part of the voluntary sector that does not receive its fair share of mainstream funds."

Swindells took on the role last month and five other marketing, fundraising and communications staff will be recruited. "We hope to have some staff in place by the end of October,

said Swindells.

The organisation will be focusing on developing committed giving from people within BME communities, specifically targeting professionals.

High level giving from individuals and companies will also be reviewed.

"We think they will see the long-term benefits of an endowment fund that supports BME groups,

said Swindells.

It will also be targeting trusts and foundations.

Swindells believes the capacity for legacy fundraising is also good.

"We will encourage people to leave bequests in their wills,

he said. "They will know that the money will go into the endowment and go towards creating future funding for black and minority ethnic groups."

He added that he is confident this amount of money can be raised. "The water has been tested, there has been research into it and there is support."

The organisation has already raised £13 million since it was established, although this has not gone in to the endowment fund but has been used for the day-to-day running of the organisation.

The Ethnic Minority Foundation and the Council for Ethnic Minority Voluntary Organisations (Cemvo) were set up at the same time to tackle the lack of resources in the BME voluntary sector.

The sector suffers from a lack of funding but also limited involvement of ethnic minority professionals who are failing to apply for trustee, volunteer and staff posts at organisations.

It was intended from the start that the Ethnic Minority Foundation would raise an endowment for funding BME groups and Cemvo would operate as an umbrella organisation for the sector, offering advice on governance and management.

"Energies until now have been going into Cemvo. The vision was that Cemvo would be working across the black and minority ethnic sector and building the capacity of organisations,

said Swindells.

"Cemvo has grown dramatically and now we have the opportunity to say we have built our credibility and can build the endowment."

As a result of the growth of Cemvo and the decision to start actively fundraising for the endowment, the board of trustees at the organisation will be expanded to include specialists in these areas.

Swindells was previously director of marketing and fundraising at the Blue Cross.

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