New crowdfunding scheme to help Covid-struck communities

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Crowdfunder & Power to Change team-up to launch Community Business Crowdmatch.

Power to Change, the independent trust that supports community businesses in England, has teamed up with UK’s leading crowdsourcing platform Crowdfunder, to launch Community Business Crowdmatch.

An innovative initiative, Community Business Crowdmatch will help local communities respond to the Covid-19 crisis by incentivising and maximising local crowdfunding campaigns. For every pound raised through Crowdfunder for a community supporting project, Power to Change will match it by one pound up to £10,000.

This scheme is aimed at emerging, new and existing community businesses. The money can support new ideas for local areas; meet increased demand for existing services; help save a community space; or bridge a funding gap.

Whilst the programme is open to all, Power to Change and Crowdfunder are particularly keen to support projects in more deprived areas of the country, and to work with Black, Asian and ethnically diverse individuals and community business leaders across England.

Vidhya Alakeson, CEO at Power to Change, said: “Communities have been the backbone of the country’s response to the coronavirus crisis and its imperative this hyper-local, neighbourhood approach continues. That’s why Power to Change has joined forces with Crowdfunder to create Crowdmatch. Through Crowdmatch, we’ll match donations to some of the country’s vital community projects. This gives projects vital funds but also encourages more people to donate. Crowdmatch makes our money and their money go further.”

There’s plenty of expert support and advice available to get you started on your crowdfunding plans from Crowdfunder and our sector experts.

Crowdfunder CEO Rob Love, said: “In these uncertain times, we’re delighted to be working with Power to Change and collaborate to support community businesses that are working hard to fight back against coronavirus. Funds like these are lifelines to so many at the moment, and we’re proud that our partnership can do something to facilitate that. We look forward to welcoming new projects onto the platform, and helping them to crowdfund.”

To find out more about Community Business Crowdmatch, sign up to the webinar on Tuesday 1 December 2020 at 12pm – https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/power-to-change-introduction-to-crowdfunding-tickets-129297958675 

Supporting renewal  

Community Business Crowdmatch is part of a wider £5million package of support to enable community businesses affected by the Covid-19 crisis to adapt, renew and rebuild their businesses so they can remain financially viable and best serve their local communities during the pandemic’s constantly shifting landscape.

Along with the Community Business Crowdmatch, the scheme includes: the Community Business Renewal Fund providing £3million of unrestricted grants; Powering Up, capacity strengthening support to help community businesses increase knowledge, resilience and equip themselves to ‘re-boot’ successfully; a further match-funding programme, Community Business ReBoost; tailored support to help community businesses protect community assets; and a programme of work highlighting the role community business can play in the economic recovery.

Building on an emergency response

In April 2020, Power to Change announced rapid emergency funding to support community businesses during lockdown. The money was available to community businesses that were previous Power to Change grantees along with members of Power to Change’s strategic partners – Co-operatives UK, Locality, SIB and the Plunkett Foundation – all of whom played a key role in designing this response. There was very high demand and Power to Change awarded more than 356 grants totalling £6.75million to community businesses in England.

It enabled many community businesses to carry on trading and diversify during lockdown, providing essential support in their communities – in some cases stepping-in to support local authorities to deliver services, particularly health and social care.

The money enabled community businesses to deal with immediate cash flow issues as a result of paused operations. 54 per cent of grantees used a portion of the money to pay staff salaries, whilst 18 per cent used some of the money to adapt assets so they could reopen and carry on trading.

Further information and support for community businesses is available at  www.powertochange.org.uk

To find out more about Community Business Crowdmatch, go to: https://www.powertochange.org.uk/get-support/programmes/community-business-crowdmatch/