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Esmée Fairbairn Foundation

About Esmée Fairbairn Foundation

The Esmée Fairbairn Foundation aims to improve the quality of life throughout the UK. It does so by funding the charitable activities of organisations that have the ideas and ability to achieve change for the better. The Foundation takes pride in supporting work that might otherwise be considered difficult to fund.

The Finance Fund, where Esmée Fairbairn Foundation does activities related to venture philanthropy, invests in charities, social enterprises and other social purpose organisations. The Foundation’s investments have ranged in size from €23,600 to €1,181,000 and so far, it has supported 28 organisations in this way, committing £15,167,000. Esmée Fairbairn Foundation makes these investments for three broad reasons:

- It is another tool to the causes it supports. Most of its support is in the form of grants; occasionally, returnable funds make more sense;
- To support intermediaries to meet the needs more systematically; it invests in intermediaries such as Bridges, Big Issue Invest, Charity Bank, Ecology Building Society and Venturesome, amongst others. They are specialists in their field, and can attract other funds alongside Esmée’s, to greater impact than we might have by ourselves;
- To help bring new sources of money to support social good. The Foundation’s philanthropic resources, though useful, do not have the scale to address the social and environmental problems it is tackling.


United Kingdom

Geographical Focus


Social Sector

Advocacy/Law, Children/Youth, Culture/Recreation, Education, Environment, Housing, Social services, Voluntarism funding and promotion

Country and Regional Focus

United Kingdom

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