Fundraising News: Housing trust sets up foundation

Joe Gill

The Notting Hill Housing Trust, which provides social housing for 50,000 people in the capital, has launched a foundation to raise the profile of its fundraising among donors.

The trust's charity shops, and its furniture shops which provide basic furniture to around 1,000 people a year, have been transferred to the foundation.

The money raised through retail sales and from corporate and private donors support hardship funds for tenants and the work of volunteers who maintain properties and gardens.

The foundation will devise and launch publicity campaigns on behalf of the enterprises under its banner. It is seeking sponsorship to rebrand its network of charity shops under the Notting Hill Foundation brand.

The foundation's executive director, Mary Harvey, said: "We have created a separate identity to allow funders to see what we do. It is easy to get lost in a big housing delivery organisation like ours. Our fundraising profile was sidelined and people found it difficult to know why they should give us money, especially with all the government funding streams coming online. We wanted funders to see exactly where the money went."

The trust is covering the running costs of the foundation so that funders' money will go directly to end users.

The foundation is a wholly-owned subsidiary of the trust, with a board made up of trust board members and independents. It will be based in the trust's Hammersmith offices.

"It's alchemy - we get gold from the fantastic innovations coming out of being here and stay in touch with exactly what our staff and volunteers are doing," said Harvey.

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