From education to employment

Helping improve young people’s financial literacy


Helping BAMER-led charities navigate the funding maze 

Black, Asian, multi-ethnic and refugee-led charities and social enterprises will get help accessing the money they need to survive thanks to a project backed by London’s largest independent funder.

Money4You was set up in 2014 by former investment banker Carol Akiwumi to improve young people’s financial literacy and help charities navigate the often-complex funding maze.

Now, the Islington-based organisation has been given a grant of £150,000 from City Bridge Trust, the City of London Corporation’s charity funder, for its AVOCADO+ Accelerator programme.

The scheme, which has run successfully over the last four years, provides much-needed support to BAMER-led non-profit organisations, which are under-represented in the sector and often lack experienced, in-house fund-raisers.

Dhruv Patel, Chairman of the City of London Corporation’s City Bridge Trust Committee, said:

“Now more than ever, at a time when the coronavirus pandemic has had a profound impact on the voluntary sector, charities need to ensure they’re tapping into every possible source of funding.

“This scheme will help BAMER-led charities, which all too often miss out on potential sources of income due to lack of fund-raising expertise, improve their chances of accessing funding and put themselves on a sound footing for the long-term future.”

The £150,000 over three years from City Bridge Trust will enable the AVOCADO+ scheme to offer intensive support from dedicated consultants to 50 non-profit organisations and online support to 200 more.

Organisations receive a ‘diagnostic check’ to see how they can make themselves more attractive to potential funders and practical support through workshops and one-to-one sessions to help them submit successful funding applications.

Carol Akiwumi, Money4You founder and CEO, said:

“This scheme helps BAMER-led charities and social enterprises be much more confident in their ability to raise funds, which gives them a much better chance of surviving in these difficult times – without it, many of them would have to shut their doors.

“The funding from City Bridge Trust will make a world of difference, enabling us to put down deeper roots, expand the scheme and help even more organisations survive and become sustainable.”

Case study

One of the organisations to benefit from the AVOCADO+ pilot was Proud To Be Me, a Peckham-based social enterprise that empowers teenage girls to develop healthy self-esteem, positive mindsets and self-confidence.

Olutoyin Adeyemi, its project co-ordinator said:

“Fund-raising was not something I had done before, but the AVOCADO+ project gave me the confidence and the capability to be able to write successful funding applications.

“It was also really informative and the information we acquired is something that will have an impact on our charity – and on young people’s lives – for many, many years to come.

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