What we fund
Edge Fund seeks to support communities, campaign groups and activists struggling for social, economic and environmental justice, especially those who are:
- Facing discrimination and injustice because of their class, ability, gender, race, nationality, religion, sexual orientation, or other factors – those who are actively working to challenge these injustices and to create just and healthy communities;
- Working for systemic change – those who seek to dismantle and replace the structures and processes that create oppression, inequality and environmental destruction.
Other points and priorities
- We currently only fund UK groups working on UK issues. We hope to accept international applications soon.
- We fund small, unfunded groups. As a rough guide, in the first round only a few of the successful applicants had annual incomes over £10,000; organisations with incomes of over £100,000 are unlikely to be short-listed.
- We are looking for work that creates change in society. We do not fund work that only provides services to individuals, such as medical care, counselling, shelter, job training and advice.
- We do not support political parties.
If you’re unsure about whether you fit the guidelines above, our checklists may help. Also take a look at the list of projects supported in the first round. Otherwise, please contact us; either a few lines and a link to your website (if you have one) by email (edgefund [at] riseup.net) or call or text 0776 712 6915. Please read these pages first, as most of your questions should be answered here. If you think you do meet the guidelines go to How to Apply.
Many people have great ideas and perspectives and a real passion for justice, but face enormous challenges in taking action. This is because we live in an unequal society where some people are held back because of their personal circumstances and backgrounds. These challenges result in further inequality within the social justice movement, as individuals from more privileged backgrounds are more likely to have advantage over others, such as the time and resources that enable them to take part. This presents a barrier to building a diverse, inclusive movement; a movement which is representative of all the different people and communities in the UK and also reflects the society we strive towards. As a small step in addressing this we would like to offer grants of up to £1,000 to individuals who are faced with these challenges and can demonstrate a clear commitment to taking action.
We recognise that this is a complex issue and that there are a number of factors we need to keep in mind. In social movements around the world there is a concern about the ‘professionalisation’ of activists, where salaries from large charities and other organisations have diluted people’s politics and often distanced them from the grassroots. Giving funding to individuals can in itself create inequalities. Individuals are also much more likely to feel disheartened on being turned down for funding.
However, we feel it’s worth taking these risks and are committed to seeking feedback, reflecting, learning and reviewing this programme as long as we need to. We feel that providing funds to people whose circumstances prevent them from being active in social change could help to empower and widen the movement and to ensure the voices of those most directly affected by inequality and injustice are heard. We’d love to hear from you if you have any comments or ideas.