Berkshire Community Foundation
100 Longwater Avenue
0118 930 3021
Berkshire Community Foundation is the county's best kept secret! But it is the way forward for charitable giving in Berkshire.
Most people's perception of charitable is to make a donation to one or a number of charities; seeing a cause and finding an organisation that as close as possible meets their giving desires it may be to Age Concern or a local hospice. But daily they are faced with issues where they live and are challenged to do something but with no idea how.
Communities in the area, and their needs
The county has two different aspects: the rural west of Berkshire where the problems are associated with social isolation, with issues such as transport for people without cars. Those affected are often disadvantaged in other ways - elderly, disabled, young or seeking employment. The east of Berkshire is the more urbanised area, with pockets of unemployment, deprivation and poor educational attainment and more inner city issues.
The overall population is growing
Between 2005 and 2008 an estimated extra 000 and changing demographics. There are now over 000 over 75 year olds and this number is due to increase by over 10% in the next few year while there are fewer people in the working age range 25-44 to support them. The main health concerns are obesity, drug and alcohol addiction, and an estimated 000 suffer from dementia.
Other examples are:
000 under 18 year olds with mental health problems; 600 with learning difficulties; A total of 000 have some form of disability (12% of the population), there are therefore significant numbers of carers who also need support, including 700 who are aged under 18
The two broad purposes are:
To work with the community supporting local voluntary and community activity through a programme of locally based, constructive grant making and capacity building. Unlike CAF and other agencies BCF is able to award grants to grassroots groups that do not have charitable status, but do make a local impact.
To work with local donors by pooling the donations of philanthropically minded individuals and community-minded companies into a high interest Endowment Fund. This provides a permanent and growing fund for activities that strengthen community today and in perpetuity.
Berkshire Community Foundation is unique in the county and plays a pivotal and vital role in the future for Berkshire's Communities. It is part of an internationally renowned network, working in excellence and repeatedly best practice to achieve their aims of local giving for local people.