The event celebrated small charities across the region and explored the findings of the Foundation’s research into what makes small charities distinctive.

Representatives from over 50 charities and sector organisations gathered in Leeds today to hear about and discuss the findings of Lloyds Bank Foundation for England and Wales’ independent research on the value of small charities.

Speakers at the event, which took place at the city’s Tetley art centre, included Lloyds Bank Foundation’s Chief Executive, Paul Streets, Rob Williamson, CEO, Community Foundation (Tyne, Wear and Northumberland) as well as small charity leaders from the region Dot Turton, CEO, Recovery Connections and Gemma Scire, Chief Executive Officer, Basis Yorkshire, who offered valuable insight to the experience of small charities in the region.

The Value of Small was commissioned by Lloyds Bank Foundation and conducted by an independent research team comprising the Centre for Regional Economic and Social Research (CRESR) at Sheffield Hallam University; the Institute for Voluntary Action Research (IVAR) and the Centre for Voluntary Sector Leadership at the Open University. 

The research, released earlier this year, highlighted the distinctive value of small charities when tackling disadvantage and found that they brought added benefits to their local communities in what they do, how they work, and the role they play in local communities, which increased local spending and investment over their larger counterparts.

The event comes as the Foundation has just awarded four Yorkshire charities new grants worth £286,984. The charities Rush House Project in Rotherham, Bradford Rape Crisis, The Hinge Centre in Bridlington and Leeds’ Solace work to tackle with complex issues working with groups including care leavers, people affected by sexual and domestic abuse and refugee and asylum seekers.

Paul Streets, Chief Executive, Lloyds Bank Foundation for England and Wales said: “We’re funding over 209 charities in the North, with over £11 million of grants. With our Value of Small research, we wanted to make sure that funding those small charities was the right approach. The research proved we were right and that size does matter. Small charities are distinctive in who they serve, what they do and how they work. Those charities are the lifeblood of their communities and in many cases the glue that holds them together.”

Pat Fairfax, Policy and Performance Manager (Third Sector), Communities Team, Leeds City Council, said: “Small charities play a vital role in the third sector here in Leeds and across the region as a whole. The Foundation’s research highlights the value of small charities – we need to use Leeds money to invest in the Leeds community and small charities play a vital role in bringing economic value to their local area.”

Rob Williamson, CEO, Community Foundation (Tyne, Wear and Northumberland) said:“Local government should be supporting local charities. For example, they should be transferring assets to small charities, not keeping you on leases - imagine what you could do with those assets, those properties on your books.”

Lloyds Bank Foundation for England and Wales partners with small and local charities who help people overcome complex social issues. Through long-term funding, developmental support and influencing policy and practice, the Foundation helps those charities make life changing impact. The Foundation is an independent charitable trust funded by the profits of Lloyds Banking Group as part of their commitment to Helping Britain Prosper.

For more information contact Jon Narcross, Press and Communications Officer (0207 378 4619)