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August 3, 2010

Lottery to invest in new independent Trust

One of the acknowledged weaknesses in the distribution of Lottery cash has been that where communities are good at making applications the cash tends to flow. Which is all very well, but this has created small pockets across the country where need is great but where little or no Lottery money has ever reached.  Different approaches are being pursued on each side of the border to rectify this imbalance. An interesting announcement last week from England

Our approach

We want to provide long-term help that supports and joins up with the valuable work already being carried out at a community, local and national level to help disadvantaged and overlooked neighbourhoods.

To do this we will set up a new independent Trust and give it up to £200 million to invest and spend over about 10 years. This Trust will support local funding schemes in specified urban and rural neighbourhoods that will help meet local need and build skills and confidence in the communities.

An independent Trust brings with it many benefits. A Trust can plan for the long-term and ensure that money committed cannot be diverted for other uses. It can be flexible in the kinds of local spending it supports, including giving out grants, setting up microfinance schemes and neighbourhood endowments, and organising social investment bonds. It can help local partners attract further investments for neighbourhoods. A Trust may also recruit staff or contract with other organisations to carry out elements of its work, and raise money from other sources, to add to the money from us.

Another important benefit the Trust can bring is its ability to work at neighbourhood level to provide support to communities: building confidence, developing skills and helping them to identify and tackle issues they prioritise.

How the Trust will work

The Trust will be set up to achieve the aim of our Big Local Trust programme:

To enable people to make their communities better places to live in, now and in the future, by helping them develop the skills and confidence they need to identify priorities that matter to them and to take action to change things for the better.

The Trust will focus its work on between 100 and 150 disadvantaged and overlooked urban and rural neighbourhoods in its lifetime. The targeted neighbourhoods are all places where many people face multiple barriers to meeting their needs, and which have not had great success in gaining resources to help. We have already selected the first 50, based on extensive analysis and discussion in each of our nine England regional areas, and we will also select a further 50-100. Details of the first 50 neighbourhoods are available on the Big Lottery Fund website

The Trust will have its own objects, which describe what it is set up to do. It will also have powers that set out the ways it can achieve its objects, for example, by giving grants, providing loans or tendering for services. These will include the power to seek other income to add to its endowment from the Big Lottery Fund.

For more information on the Trust click here