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Backbone Fund

About the Fund

We know that the work of our grantees is being delivered at a time when the external environment brings increasing pressure from economic and political shifts that cannot always be planned for. Resources for advocacy, collaboration, business development and other core functions have become increasingly scarce, yet are critical to a thriving civil society.

As a foundation we are in the privileged position of being able to support these essential functions and can mitigate against the external pressures that can make them vulnerable. We know that stable and flexible funding from an independent source is hard to come by, particularly for activities that are not ‘front-line’ or less visible, but nonetheless incredibly valuable to enabling civil society organisations to do what they do well now and in the future.

Through the Backbone Fund, we support organisations to resource essential activities as part of a wider response to back civil society and its leaders. The Fund offers funding towards core activity and makes a lasting commitment of up to five years to each organisation. It will enable those involved to resource their core services, fund essential posts and ensure that there is funding that can be relied upon for a significant period of time, free of political cycles. This is an approach that we have seen to be effective across our funding portfolios.

To better understand the impact of the Fund, we commissioned an independent evaluation from Nexus Evaluations Ltd. This summary highlights the key findings and offers recommendations for funders and infrastructure organisations.

The Fund is invitation only.

Please see our grants database for more information.