The Fore is a pioneering grant-maker providing strategic development funding and skills support to small charities and social enterprises across the UK. With a ground-breaking ethos of treating charities as investees rather than beneficiaries, The Fore is building a reputation as an investor in social change from the ground up that is challenging the traditional power dynamic between funder and fundee.
Over the next five years The Fore has ambitious plans to accelerate social change by improving the way resources are distributed to charities. The Fore is looking to lead change in the UK funding sector, inspiring a more equitable, professional and collaborative funding approach that will ensure our society is in a better position to solve it’s most challenging social problems.
The Fore’s mission is to ensure that anyone who has the talent and drive to create social change can access the financial and skills support they need to succeed. Since it launched in 2017, The Fore has achieved exceptional results. £5.3m in funding, alongside over 8200 hours of skills support, has been awarded to 402 small charities and social enterprises, catalysing new solutions to issues ranging from climate change to mental health support to disability inclusion.
The Fore's venture capital-style approach – a marked change from more traditional, siloed funding models - demonstrates a more equitable form of support for small charities but also one that works. The Fore is demonstrating that treating leaders as experts in their own field and breaking down many of the existing barriers to funding works. Results from a 2019 study show that charities supported by The Fore show income growth 800% higher than a comparison group four years after the grant.
The Fore’s broader vision for impact is based on the understanding that investing in dynamic small charities and social enterprises is a highly effective and cost-efficient way to support social innovation. The Fore has already secured recognition across the third sector and beyond for its funding practices and its commitment to research, impact management and transparency. Inequalities and inefficiencies are rife in the existing funding sector. 90% of all funding in the sector goes to the largest 10% of charities; an estimated £1.1bn is wasted on the costs of unsuccessful fundraising each year (the whole sector has a total income of £6bn) and marginalized groups find it harder to access funding[i].In the next five years, The Fore is looking to use everything it has achieved to lead broader systems change in the current UK funding system.
Supported by a wide range of partners including international businesses and funders as well as private and family foundations, The Fore is already demontrating the power to achieve greater efficiencies and impact through collaboration but is determined to do more. During 2020 The Fore proved its ability to scale the funding model. When the pandemic hit, The Fore moved fast to operate at 9 x capacity. Through adapting its ground-breaking, charity-led funding model The Fore offered over 220 smaller unrestricted grants during the first lockdown to help small non-profit organisations adapt their services to the new circumstances and prepare for the future with extraordinary impact.
In 2021 The Fore is looking to accelerating its ambitious plans to expand activities across the UK. With results that showThe Fore’s approach as better for both small charities and funders, a surge in demand due to the devastating effects of the pandemic and more interest than ever from the private sector, the time is right.
[i] 87% of BAME-led charities have turnover of less than £100,000p.a.