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Community Foundation launches the Giving Network to find 30 new donors in its 30th anniversary year

The Community Foundation this week launched the Giving Network to find 30 new people who want to help change lives on their doorstep. The initiative is backed by Ward Hadaway law firm, which also celebrates its 30th birthday in 2018.

The Giving Network is being launched by the Community Foundation to help tackle big is-sues that affect people and communities across the North East – and to involve the next generation of professionals and businesspeople who want to make a real difference to lives and communities where they live.

The Giving Network is now searching for 30 individuals who are willing to donate a monthly amount – £30 – into a collective fund over a year, matched pound for pound from the Com-munity Foundation’s unrestricted funds.

40-year-old Gary Fawcett, from Morpeth, a Divisional Director at Brewin Dolphin Investment Management & Financial Planning, is one of the first people to sign up to the Giving Network.

He said: “The Giving Network at the Community Foundation is a great idea for my generation and for professional people like me with young families who want to help local charities. For me, it was the local element that was important as well as the fact that collectively we can make a real difference.

“It’s a manageable but meaningful amount that adds up to quite a big sum over a year when you donate alongside others, so you can really make a difference to local charities.

“It gets people involved at a younger age and there is a real movement now to do more. It is rewarding and the more you can help, the better you feel. If you want to give to charity, this is a great way to start – and you get to meet those you are helping and see where your money is going.”

At the end of the 12 months, there will be a special event where each of the donors in the Giving Network will vote for one or more from a group of the Community Foundation’s trust-ed local charities who will pitch on the night to receive a portion of the collective pot.

These ‘Giving Events’ will be held annually and donors will be able to join ‘seeing is believing’ visits to one or two of the groups they have supported.

Rob Williamson, Chief Executive of the Community Foundation, said: “We’re looking for the next generation of people to lead the way in making a difference to people’s lives across the North East. If you’re ready to give something back but don’t know where to begin, we can help.

“Many people find it hard or bewildering when considering making charitable donations – so we’ve made it easy. By joining the Giving Network, all the leg work is done for you – and you’ll be safe in the knowledge that you’re donating to the most worthy causes.

“Alone it is often difficult to make a real difference but together we can change lives. As a collective, the Giving Network ensures that your smaller donations count for more and go further, as donations are match funded and increased by Gift Aid.

“As part of the Giving Network, you will have the opportunity to give what you can to charities on your doorstep – as well as see the difference you are making. Not only will you have a sense of empowerment, you’ll feel good about yourself too – safe in the knowledge that the causes you are supporting are truly in need.”

Also celebrating its 30th anniversary this year, Ward Hadaway is backing the initiative.

Jamie Martin, Senior Partner at Ward Hadaway said: “Ward Hadaway is a law firm rooted in the North East.
“We are committed to giving back to the communities in our region, and proud to support the Community Foundation’s initiative to encourage others to do so too.”

The Community Foundation for Tyne & Wear and Northumberland is a charity that champi-ons giving to make a difference to people and communities across the North East of Eng-land. Last month, the Community Foundation announced that in 2017-18 it gave out grants worth £7.7million to help 943 community groups and 234 individuals across the North East – totaling £122million since it was set up 30 years ago.